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Br Cletus

Tribute to Brother Cletus: A Life of Faith and Service

Born Trevor Francis Storey in Melbourne on 8 February 1937, Brother Cletus, as he came to be known, embarked on a journey of faith and service that would span the breadth of continents and touch countless lives. Son of Thomas and Kathleen Storey, he was the brother of Peter, but in the embrace of the Brotherhood, he found a wider family, a community bound by shared purpose and unwavering devotion.

With the simple yet profound act of receiving the Religious Habit and assuming the name Brother Cletus on 14 May 1954, he embarked on a path illuminated by the light of faith. His commitment was steadfast, as he pronounced his First Vows on 26 January 1956 and later Perpetual Vows in December 1962, pledging his life to the service of others.

From the hallowed halls of St Bedes College in Mentone to the vibrant landscapes of Papua New Guinea, Brother Cletus's ministry knew no bounds. Whether as a teacher at St Bedes, a Director and Principal at Rosary High School in Kondiu, Papua New Guinea, or a guiding presence at La Salle Academy in Lithgow, his dedication to education and nurturing young minds was unwavering.

Arriving at St. Bedes College in 1958, Brother Cletus's journey as an educator began, leaving an indelible mark on the hearts of his students. His warmth and genuine care for each individual endeared him to all, from the toughest rogues in the middle school to the senior students at Benilde High. His quiet manner offered not threat but simple friendship, drawing students back year after year.

As the decades passe, his journey took him to Benilde High School in Bankstown, Kagua High School in Kagua, Papua New Guinea, and Holy Trinity Teacher’ College in Mount Hagen, Papua New Guinea, each posting leaving an indelible mark on his soul. His tireless efforts, whether as a teacher or director, were infused with a sense of purpose and a deep-seated belief in the transformative power of education.

In 1993, Brother Cletus assumed the role of Auxiliary Visitor, a position of leadership that allowed him to guide and inspire his fellow Brothers with wisdom and compassion. In his role as Auxiliary Visitor from 1993-1996, Brother Cletus's love and concern for the communities in Papua New Guinea shone brightly. His visits were not merely duties but labors of love, as he supported and uplifted those he encountered. His respect for the people of Papua New Guinea was palpable, and his sense of fun endeared him to all.

Vincent Keating, a fellow Brother, took to the lectern to share his memories of Brother Cletus. "Once, when asked for his definition of a gentleman, Cardinal John Henry Newman responded 'A gentleman is easy and puts others at ease.' Using his own criterion, Newman would certainly proclaim Br. Cletus a gentleman," Cleating began. He recounted their first encounter, reminiscing about the unexpected turn of events that marked the beginning of their journey together. "For me, it is ironic but fitting that both his arrival here and departure to-day start from the same location," Cleating reflected.

Quoting the Brother's Rule, another long-time companion of Brother Cletus, Brother Quentin, spoke of his unwavering commitment to community and service. "Those of us who had the privilege of living in community with Cletus found him not only a warm human being with an obvious great love of classical music, reading and drama but gradually came to appreciate his strong uncomplicated faith," Quentin declared. He highlighted Brother Cletus's pastoral qualities, prayerfulness, and leadership skills, praising his role as Auxiliary Visitor with responsibility for communities in Papua New Guinea.

Retirement beckoned in 2003, but Brother Cletus's commitment to his vocation remained undiminished. Even in retirement, he continued to serve, first in the Provincial Office, then as Director in Cronulla, and finally, in Mentone, where he once again embraced the quietude of retirement, his days enriched by prayer and contemplation.

In 2022, Brother Cletus found solace and companionship in the halls of Mercy Place, Fernhill, his final earthly abode. It was here, amidst the gentle embrace of his Brothers, that he breathed his last, on Thursday afternoon, 11 April 2024, his journey of faith reaching its culmination. His departure, marked by a gentle sigh, echoed through the corridors of Mercy Place, leaving behind memories that danced like flickering candle flames in the hearts of those who knew him.

In the quiet chapel, where shafts of light filtered through stained glass, friends and fellow Brothers gathered to bid farewell to a man whose life had been a testament to gentleness and grace. As the eulogies unfurled, they painted a portrait of a man who embodied Cardinal John Henry Newman's definition of a gentleman, one who was easy and put others at ease. Brother Cletus, known for his warmth and compassion, had touched the lives of many, leaving behind a legacy of kindness and humility.

As we remember Brother Cletus with memorial liturgies, his legacy lives on in the hearts of all who knew him. Through their prayers, communities and individuals entrust Brother Cletus to Gods loving care, his spirit finding peace in the embrace of eternity. May he rest in peace, knowing that his gentle spirit lives on in the hearts of all who were touched by his grace.

† Rest in peace, Brother Cletus. †


Click HERE to read the Eulogy given by Br Quentin O'Holloran 

Click HERE to read the Eulogy given by Br Vincent Keating