Fr Frank Martin passed away recently, aged 87. A great man has gone. His greatness could be measured by his extraordinary, timely and visionary leadership of Catholic education that ensured the funding and ongoing existence of the schools that today we take for granted. For that work he was awarded an M.B.E. But, for me, who grew to know and love him as a parish priest, Frank’s true greatness lay in his acceptance, love and compassion towards others, his faith and empowering leadership. Our vibrant parish, with dozens of groups, was a testament to Frank (and Anne’s) assessment of people and their gifts – then encouragement to those people to see things through. However feebly, I’ve consciously modelled my faith leadership on his inclusive style.
Frank was always an educator – engaging with people, touching hearts, helping them to see the good in themselves, then drawing that forth from them. Frank’s faith – in God, in the precepts of Vatican II and in people – will live on. A great man has gone but we are forever changed for the better.
Have a great week!