Valletta (Malta), September 14, 2017 - With the solemn Mass celebrated in the former convent church of the Knights of Malta, now the Cathedral in Valletta, the Archbishop Metropolitan Archbishop Charles J. Scicluna, presided over the celebrations commemorating the 200 years since the foundation of the Augustinian Province of Malta, which has as its patron saint Saint Mark the Evangelist. During this year various pastoral, cultural and social celebrations have been held that marked the calendar with a celebration of the various activities that the Province engages in today.
Concelebrating with the Archbishop there were the Prior Provincial Fr. Raymond Francalanza and all the brothers of the Province, Archbishop Mario Grech, Bishop of Gozo; Archbishop Alessandro D'Errico, Apostolic Nuncio; Archbishop Pawlu Cremona OP, Emeritus Archbishop of Malta; representatives of other religious provinces and various priests, some of whom received their training at St. Augustine College. There were also the Augustinian Servants of Jesus and Mary, and a large presence of Augustinian lay people and other lay friends, who are close to us in our pastoral realities.
The first Augustinians arrived on the Maltese islands towards the end of the 14th century. After two attempts to become established, finally in 1817 the Province of Malta was born, beginning with three convents: Rabat, Valletta and Victoria. Today the Province has 6 communities, and the ministerial field includes: pastoral-parochial, educational, social and cultural work. Some friars work in Cuba, Brazil and Italy. In the past among the missionary fields were our presence in Algeria, Tunisia, Australia, Canada and the USA. Today the province consists of 39 solemn professed friars, and among its members there is His Eminence Prospero Cardinal Grech.
With this commemoration of the first 200 years of the formation of the Province, which was detached from the Sicilian one, we want to thank God for the history of these years and look forward with courage and with full confidence in God's fidelity, to which we render honor and glory!