Personal Information
Born:20th May 1902
Died:27th October 1968
Nationality:Sri Lankan
Education:Royal College, Colombo
Spouse:Ouida Corea
Parents:Dr. James Alfred Ernest Corea and Letitia Seneviratne
Reverend Canon Ivan and Ouida Corea

Memorial at St.Luke‘s Church Borella


REVEREND CANON IVAN COREA was born on the 20th of May 1902 in Chilaw, Sri Lanka, to Dr. James Alfred Ernest Corea and his wife Letitia Seneviratne. He grew up with his brother Bertie and sister Gwendoline and received his education at Royal College, Colombo. In 1926, Canon Corea was ordained as a vicar of the Anglican Church, and was posted to St. Phillip’s Church in Kurana, Katunayake.

Three years after his ordination, Canon Ivan Corea became the Vicar of Saint Luke’s Church, Borella, where he remained for over 25 years. He married Ouida, daughter of Gate Mudaliyar James Edward Corea and Frances Eleanor Ameresekera in 1925, and both Ivan and his wife helped the poorest members of the area during their time at St. Luke’s, especially the Rodiya ('untouchables') community. He provided housing for them on Church property. Canon Ivan contributed to the rebuilding of the church, by designing the doors, windows, the designs for the pillars and other decorative features of the church.

His marriage to Ouida produced two sons: Vernon and Ernest. They were brought up in the vicarage of St. Luke’s Church. In 1954, Canon Ivan left Saint Luke’s Church after his wife’s death. He was appointed Vicar of St. Paul’s Church, Milagiriya. He was also the Rural Dean of Colombo and the Chaplain to the Bishop of Colombo. He  passed away on 27th October 1968. Sri Lanka’s King of Sinhala Pop, musician Clarence Wijewardena wrote his classic hit, 'Piyaneni', in memory of Canon Ivan Corea, who championed the rights of the poor.

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