Wartime sailor turned pastor hits 100th birthday
A man who served as a Second World War sailor and who later became a man of the cloth has celebrated his centenary.
Wilfred Steede’s 100th milestone was celebrated with a motorcade on Monday, where family and friends and politicians, including David Burt, the Premier, and Derrick Burgess, the MP for his constituency, visited him.
Mr Steede, from Hamilton Parish, served in the Royal Navy during the Second World War.
He later helped to set up prayer meetings for men at the Reach Out Addiction Centre at the Harbour Light rehabilitation centre after it opened in 1977.
Mr Steede was appointed leader of the Gospel Tabernacle United Holy Church in Hamilton Parish in 1984.
He became pastor in 1989 and served in the role until 2000.
Bishop Stephen Jones of the United Holy Church of Bermuda said Mr Steede was born the same year that the church was founded.
He added that Mr Steede had seen “many storms and challenges”, including the Korean and Vietnam Wars and the civil rights movement.
Bishop Jones said: “As founding co-pastor of Gospel Tabernacle and now as pastor emeritus, he assisted the Bermuda district in establishing churches and ministries.
“Elder Wilfred Steede’s time and dedication over the many years will never be forgotten.”
Joseph King Jr, of the Gospel Tabernacle United Holy Church, said that Mr Steede was the “legend of the century” and “a real hero”.
He added: “He was known for spreading a message of hope and reaching down to help others up.”
Mr Furbert, the Minister for the Cabinet Office, said: “It is certainly a blessing to celebrate cousin Wilfred Steede’s long age and prosperity.
“I wish him continued good health and blessings. His service to the Lord and community is an inspiration to all of us.”
Mr Burgess, the MP for Hamilton East, said: “Elder Wilfred Steede is a remarkable human being.
“I recall when we played golf a few times and I was surprised that he kept up the pace with us – he was still a pretty good golfer even in his nineties.
“Again, I send well wishes to cousin Wilfred Steede on his 100th birthday.”