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RIP – Alban SSF

Brother Alban was a friar with many different sides to his character. He was a spiritual director; writer of ‘Spooky Takes’ (one of his short stories won a prize); guardian; and possessed a fund of literary knowledge. his wry and gentle humour was legendary. He died on 21st April at the age of 64 after nearly 30 years in profession.

Brother Anselm writes:

Graham Addis, who was to become Alban, visited Hilfield Friary in Holy Week 1954 and is remembered cleaning the garden shed windows in the sunshine – in those far off spartan days, all guests ‘helped’.

Later, by his life, he was to help his brethren to clarify their vision of God and of the Franciscans call, in a similar unobtrusive and totally loveable way. Between them, our noviciate and later Cuddesdon Theological College prepared him for the 23 years at Glasshampton (ten as Guardian) which were his principal gift to SSF and his response to a clear call from God to the contemplative way. By his steadfast and costly witness he upheld the ideals of Father William, and in addition made the marmalade and provided an inexhaustible supply of country wine.

By nature he was a man of prayer and a man who wrote – mostly for children, as regular readers of the Church Times will recall – and from 1958 this journal profited from his work on the editorial board.

God has extended his compassion to compassionate Alban, and taken him to where no dirty windows obscure the view. Those to whom for a time he was lent, although grieving for his smile, his turn of phrase, his often silent understanding – find themselves heartened to follow. f