Marianist Father Martin Solma, SM, has served as provincial of the Marianist Province of the United States since July 1, 2010.
Fr. Martin’s ministry experiences have taken him from Kalamazoo to Kenya. He began his career teaching religious education and English at Msgr. John Hackett High School in Kalamazoo, Mich. (1971-1975) and Purcell Marian High School in Cincinnati (1979-1982). In 1982, Fr. Martin began more than 25 years of ministry in Eastern Africa. He first served as assistant novice director at the Marianist novitiate in Ekpoma, Nigeria, and became director of the Marianist novitiate in Nairobi, Kenya, in 1985.
Fr. Martin was appointed regional superior for Eastern Africa in 1992, a position he held until 1998. He served five years (1999-2004) as director of the Marianist scholasticate in Nairobi before being appointed to a three-year term as district superior of Eastern Africa in 2004. Fr. Martin served as manager of Our Lady of Nazareth Primary School in Nairobi where he was actively involved in the school’s development for more than 13 years. OLN is a school for 1,900 children from the Mukuru kwa Njenga slums in Nairobi.
Fr. Martin was born in Cleveland, where he met the Marianists while attending St. Joseph High School. Upon graduation in 1966, Fr. Martin entered the Marianist novitiate at Marcy, N.Y. He professed first vows in 1967 at Marcy and perpetual vows in 1973 at Mount Saint John in Dayton. Fr. Martin was ordained in 1978 in Dayton.
He received a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and English in 1971 from the University of Dayton and a master’s degree in religious education in 1975 from Boston College. In 1979, Fr. Martin received a master of divinity degree from the University of St. Michael’s College in Toronto.