New Pastor for Canouan Church

Msgr. Vincent Blackett

The community of Our Lady of the Assumption has a new pastor. On Sunday, November 22, the Solemnity of Christ the King, the Rev. Msgr. Vincent Blackett was installed as priest-in-charge of the Church in Canouan. Msgr. Blackett joins Fr. Boniface in the Holy Family Parish. Bishop County who performed the installation says that he is ‘pleased’ to welcome Msgr. Blackett who comes with a ‘wealth of experience’. Bishop County also welcomes ‘the birthing stage’ of the Friend of Jesus Missionary Society. According to Msgr. Blackett, this society is founded to assist the Church in the Caribbean or any part in the world where there is a need with the work of Evangelization.  He shared that, “Presently there is a congregation of fifteen young men who are preparing for ordination to the priesthood. The house of formation is in Nigeria and there are eight who have completed studies and will come out here for Missionary formation next year.”

Msgr. Blackett, a native of Barbados, lived and worked in the UK teaching and assisting in parishes in Birmingham and London for five years; in Zambia as Co-ordinator for Ecumenical Leadership and Development for five years at the Mindolo Ecumenical Foundation (Pan African Institution). A priest of 45 years, he spent the last 18 years in his home country in various capacities including Vicar General.

Having been ordained a priest for the then Diocese of Bridgetown-Kingstown, Msgr. Blackett is no stranger to St. Vincent and the Grenadines. As a student he spent time here, particularly in the Grenadines, much of it with the Scarboro Fathers.

On the day of his installation he expressed, “Like St. Peter on the mount of Transfiguration I say – it’s wonderful to be here. Life in the Grenadines is quite different to the life I knew as a student and some of the lovely people I met are no longer with us. Some of those who were my close friends now live on the mainland and some have gone to their homeland in heaven. I have met people who lived abroad when I would visit and have returned so I am starting conversation with them to see how they are responding to the changed society. This is a time of learning and growing.”

Msgr. Blackett replaces Fr. Niño Mirandilla in Canouan who has since been appointed assistant priest at the Cathedral parish and Chaplain for the Filipino Community.