Saint Joseph's College, Colombo

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St. Joseph's College
St. Joseph's College Colombo crest.png
T. B. Jayah Mawatha, Colombo 10

Coordinates6°55′29″N 79°51′37″E / 6.924822°N 79.860405°E / 6.924822; 79.860405Coordinates: 6°55′29″N 79°51′37″E / 6.924822°N 79.860405°E / 6.924822; 79.860405
TypeGovernment-aided private school
MottoLatin: In Scientia et Virtute
(In Knowledge and Virtue)
Religious affiliation(s)Roman Catholic
Established2 March 1896; 125 years ago (1896-03-02)
RectorRanjith Andradi
Age5 to 19
Color(s)Blue & White    
AlumniList of Saint Joseph's College, Colombo alumni
Alumni nameJosephian

St. Joseph's College is a Catholic educational institution located in Colombo, Sri Lanka. It was established in 1896 by European Oblate missionaries led by Dr. Christopher Ernest Bonjean O.M.I.. The college enrolls over 4,000 students with a staff of over 400.[1][2] Distinguished former students include Cardinal Thomas Cooray, the first Cardinal from Sri Lanka[3] and President Ranasinghe Premadasa. The (Latin) motto of the college is In Scientia et Virtute, meaning "In Knowledge and Virtue".

The school is a non-fee levying school, whereby it receives some state funding, relying mostly on funds from an extensive network of alumni worldwide.[citation needed]

School buildings cover 15 acres (61,000 m2) and include a sports complex, and an Olympic standard swimming pool which was built in 1952, incidentally is perhaps the oldest swimming pool in a school in Sri Lanka.{{citation needed|date=September 2019}


Cricket has been played at the school since its founding. At that time it was the only Catholic school in a group of elite, mainly secular or Protestant Christian, private boys' schools which often played against one another.[4] Many alumnae played on the national team.

St. Joseph's oldest cricket rival is St. Anthony's College, Kandy. They compete for the Murali-Vaas Trophy, which was inaugurated in 2007 and named after St. Anthony's alumnus Muttiah Muralitharan and St. Joseph's alumnus Chaminda Vaas. In 2012 the two schools celebrated their historic 100th encounter.[5] The most high-profile rivalry is with St. Peter's College, a brother school founded as its satellite campus and also known as the St.Joseph's College South. Its annual match-up is known locally as the "Battle of the Saints" or "Joe–Pete".[6]


Rev Fr Charles Collin OMI 1896–1910
Rev Fr Charles Lytton OMI 1910–1912
Rev Fr Emile Nicholas OMI 1912–1919
Rev Fr Maurice Legoc OMI 1919–1940
Rev Fr Peter A. Pillai OMI 1940–1961
Rev Fr W. L. A. Don Peter 1961–1971
Rev Fr Mervyn Weerakkody 1971–1974
Rev Fr Quintus Fernando 1974–1979
Rev Fr Neville Emmanuel 1979–1983
Rev Fr Stanley Abeysekara 1983–1996
Rev Fr Victor Silva 1996–2005
Rev Fr Sylvester Ranasinghe 2005-2014
Rev Fr Travis Gabriel 2014–2019
Rev Fr Ranjith Andradi 2019

College anthem[edit]

The College anthem was composed by Edgar Neydorff. The words are by Fr. John M. Lanigan O.M.I..

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ Wright, Arnold (1999). Twentieth Century Impressions of Ceylon: Its History, People, Commerce ... p. 114-115. ISBN 9788120613355. Retrieved 24 October 2019.
  2. ^ Pinto, Leonard (14 July 2015). Being a Christian in Sri Lanka: Historical, Political, Social, and Religious ... ISBN 9781452528625. Retrieved 24 October 2019.
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 27 July 2011. Retrieved 25 October 2010.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^ "When Royal thrashed Cambrians in inaugural match in 1897". Daily News. 21 July 2013.
  5. ^ "Two saints at battle and the stakes are high". The Sunday Times. 12 February 2012.
  6. ^ "Joe-Pete big match opens new chapter". Sunday Observer. 28 February 2016.

External links[edit]