The Essence Of Life And Other Poems (1976)

By Verna Ernestine Penn. 1976
A selection from hundreds of poems spanning a ten-year period, some of which have appeared in three publications.

The Essence of Life
The Essence of Life


The voice of the British Virgin Islands may be heard in these poems. In communicating her deep feelings for the islands, Verna Penn not only utilizes the great Romantic tradition, but also the contemporary local idiom, bringing together both the British Virgin Islands history and their aspirations for the future (Pyke Johnson, Jr., Editor Doubleday & Co. NYC)

…her poems  capture the ambiance of those little known but beloved British Virgin Islands… her poems have validity as well as beauty… she reflects that special combination of mood, time and place which makes the West Indies unique… her vision is the special one of an islander whose eyes reach across the Caribbean… (Florence Lewishon, author-historian, USVI)

VIRGIN ISLANDS: World Bibliographical Series Volume 138

by Verna Penn Moll. Clio Press Ltd, 1991

Virgin Islands
Virgin Islands by Verna Penn Moll

The Volume is the only available up-to-date, multi-disciplinary, selective annotative bibliography of the Virgin islands. It covers a wide range of subjects, including geography, tourism, the economy, agriculture and fisheries, flora and fauna, history, language and dialects, folklore, religion, politics, foreign affairs, education, literature and the arts. Attention is paid both to the major standard works and to the more popular publications by indigenous and other authors. This work will be invaluable to general readers, researchers, and all those interested in the Virgin Islands.

KITTS- NEVIS: Would Bibliographical Series, Volume 174

By Verna Penn Moll. Clio Press Ltd, 1995


St Kitts-Nevis
St Kitts-Nevis by Verna Penn Moll


The bibliography details and evaluates 565 selected sources, and is intended to assist users in understanding the people of St. Kitts and Nevis and their culture. Aspects of the history, geography, politics, socio-cultural and economic conditions of these islands are covered, making this a key work of reference, which should be invaluable to students, librarians, business people and general readers.


By Verna Penn Moll. Cedar Tree Books, 1997.

 An anthology of poems, written  in praise of the British Virgin Islands, while the author spent many years away from her native home. 

Legacy: Poems by Verna Penn Moll



Verna Penn Moll writes with a simplicity of structure and a clarity that brings her subjects into sharp focus… strong and compelling, her imagery excites and involves… her flow of language draws you in.

Annie Taber (M. ED) Adult Community College, Colchester, England.

 I admire Verna’s poems which seem to me to capture the authentic flavour and spirit of a wonderful corner of the Caribbean, where over fifty years ago, I worked as first Education Officer.

( Thomas D. Green(M Ed.) York, England)

Coals of Fire by Verna Penn Moll.

Coals of Fire: The Development of Caribbean Fireplace, Cooking facilities and Fireplace Technology with traditional Customs, Myths and Sayings.

Coals Of Fire
Coals of Fire: The Development of Caribbean Fireplace, Cooking facilities and Fireplace Technology with traditional Customs, Myths and Sayings.

(Review) Petra X Off  having Adventures

This is a wonderful book describing the technology of fireplaces for cooking from Siboney Indian times through to present day folk-cooking. Although everyone in the Caribbean now cooks on gas or electric, the few people lucky enough to have a traditional bread oven in the garden do produce superlative bread and cakes. At Carnival time though, out come the coalpots, the kerosene drum barbeques and the latest – cast-off wheels of cars and trucks turned into ovens! The pen and ink illustrations by Joseph Hodge are spot-on. Just the right amount of detail and no romanticised coconut trees waving in the backgrounds. An excellent and informative read.

METHODISM: 200 Years of Witness, 1810- 2010. Celebrating our Heritage of Faith and Freedom.

Edited by Verna Penn Moll & J. Wheatley.  Bicentennial Anniversary Committee, 2010

The History of the East End Methodist Church as told by Members and Adherents


Methodists Local Preachers In The Virgin Islands 1858-2014
Methodists Local Preachers In The Virgin Islands 1858-2014


Methodist Local  Preachers in the British Virgin Islands 1858 – 2015   by Verna Penn Moll.  BVI Methodist Circuit, 2015

A collective biography of BVI Methodist Local Preachers, who have passed on to their reward. It comprises full biographies and biographical notes. The work adds to the documentary heritage of the  BVI Methodist Church specifically, and so provides a resource where  young people of the Church could find role models and encouragement to grow stronger in the faith. Additionally, the book adds genealogical research material for scholars and writers. The work has an index, five appendices, a bibliography and illustrations.


This biography of Methodist Local Peachers had its origin in the consciousness of author, Verna Penn Moll.  It sprang out of her desire to document the biographies of those lay preachers whom she said  ‘spoke the  Word of God to us in their time: a time when Missionaries were scarse and getting around was not easy, particulaty given ths scattered nature of the Virgin Islands Circuit across several islands, many characterised by rugged, hilly terrain’.

It is a timely work: important, relevant, well researched and carefuly documented.  I have great respect and admiration for the writer’s work as a poet and author. I commend this book, preserving our documentary and spiritual heritage, in gratitude to those preachers who have kept the faith and inspired hope in countless thousands. It will encourage and strengthen us all in the faith today. May all who read it know that the same God , who called our brothers and sisters then, is still calling us today.  ( Charles A. Seaton, Superintendent Minister, 2012- 20115)



This Land: A Trust From God

The Environment And Related Topics

by Verna Penn Moll, 2014

This Land - A Trust from God
This Land: A Trust from God – The environment and related topics.


This book seeks to bring renewed awareness of and commitment to our personal and collective responsibility for the protection and preservation of the environment, and our God-given duties towards the world around us. It seeks to bring insight into specific issues and concerns in the Virgin islands society at a given time. It should encourage us to measure the changes made between 1995 and now, to seek solutions, take action, and encourage change for the better.

“The book calls us to give thanks for every good steward who gathers the everyday we senselessly toss aside, the stewards who know its history, its character and its value; stewards who cherish The Presence in its ordinariness; those like the” long-memoried woman,” who re-collect all its many pieces, and re-present them beautifully back to us in good trust for the safekeeping of these islands, their children, and their legacy”.

(Patricia Tunrbull, Ph. D)


by Verna Penn Moll: Light Switch Press, United States, 2020. Paperback.

Lead Me To The Rock
Lead Me To The Rock


Verna Penn Moll takes us on an intimate journey of her deliverance from emotional and spiritual doubts and fears; even from the jaws of death.If you are experiencing similar struggles against illness, bereavement, loneliness, depression, financial loss or any other affliction, offer them up to God and let Him show you His plan for your life and purpose on this Earth.Verna E. Penn Moll is a Virgin Islander dedicated to the cause of preserving the cultural and spiritual heritage of the Virgin Islands. She has edited and written several books and other publications including Methodism: 200 years of Witness 1810-2010, Poetic Prayers: Where Cultures Meet 1999, This Land: A Trust From God, 2014 and Funintun’s Christmas: Traditional Christmas Customs of the BVI, 2015.Penn Moll has held several leading positions in her homeland. She is also a Methodist and has served as Youth leader, Life Boys Leader and Assistant Sunday School Superintendent. She is currently serving on the BVI Circuit (MCCA) Women’s Commission of the Methodist Church of the Caribbean and the Americas.





Funintun’s Christmas

2nd Edition. By Verna Penn Moll. Cedar Tree Press,  2020

Funitun's Christmas
Funitun’s Christmas



The original ‘Funintun’s Christmas’ was published in 2015 and went out-of-print within nine months, leaving a few orders still unfilled. The need for a reprint became even more evident after devastating floods and storms destroyed so many libraries and books in the Virgin Islands in September 2017.

In this revised edition, the cover illustration is the Inkberry, Virgin Islands traditional Christmas tree, which was  popular in the 1960s and before. There is an  addendum, containing  reviews of the book, how the book got its name,  and an historical background note on the Virgin Islands.

The reviews, by prominent educators Medita Wheatley, Dr. Katherine Smith, Dr. Angel Smith and Dr Patricia Turnbull, were delivered at the book launch. . The ceremony was held at the Breeze Way of the Government Administration Complex in Road Town, Tortola, on November 9, 2015.   We hope that many, if not all, of the projections made by those educators, may now become a reality.

‘Funintun’s Christmas’ is the definitive book documenting Virgin Islands  Christmas tradition and customs.


Mrs Penn Moll, speaking to Virgin Islands News Online (VINO), said the need to document VI’s Christmas traditions became apparent, given there was a, “lack of published material in the Virgin Islands, generally and particularly, about our Christmas customs.”

Inspiration for the original 2015 book

According to the author, in addition to the general lack of materials, when researching on the topic she also discovered the little that was present on the internet was ‘appallingly inaccurate.’

“I, therefore, thought that it was time to document, both to remind ourselves of our tradition, and to share our valued Christmas customs with the world,” she told VINO.

Mrs Penn Moll said the original ‘Funintun’s Christmas’ was launched on November 9, 2015, and went out-of-print within nine months, leaving a few orders still unfilled.

“The need for a reprint became even more evident after devastating floods and storms destroyed so many libraries and books in the Virgin Islands in September 2017.”

2020 revision extras

However, instead of just doing a mere reprint, Mrs Penn Moll said the original book has been revised to include more relevant illustrations and some extras.

The revised book will feature four reviews from VI’s prominent educators; Medita Wheatley, Dr Katherine Smith, Dr Angel Smith and Dr Patricia Turnbull, in addition to historical notes on the islands.

‘Funintun’s Christmas’ remains a definitive book documenting Virgin Islands Christmas tradition and customs and is now available at local bookshops and at Penn’s Landing, East End, Tortola, Mrs Penn Moll told VINO.

The 2nd edition also features on its cover an illustration of the Inkberry Tree, the Virgin Islands traditional Christmas tree, which was popular in the 1960s and before. (Virgin Islands News on-line)