May the word you have shared with us be a source of courage in life, light to our path, comfort in our trials – The Archbishop

Message of Archbishop Charles Jude Scicluna

Your Holiness,

We thank you sincerely for your decision to visit us. Thank you for celebrating the Holy Eucharist with us. Thank you for your love for us.

May the word you have shared with us be a source of courage in life, light to our path, comfort in our trials.

In the first century after Christ’s Resurrection, these islands had the good fortune of receiving the light of the Gospel through God’s grace, thanks to the presence amongst us of our father in faith, St Paul the Apostle, whom Publius, the protos of the island, and the Maltese, welcomed “with unusual kindness” (Acts 28:2), together with two hundred and seventy-five other persons who found themselves shipwrecked on our shores.

May your visit among us and your blessing upon us instil in the heart of each and every one of us that warmth of charity and that unusual kindness that are among the best fruits of the Holy Spirit.

May the sweet glance of Our Lady of Damascus pierce our hearts and protect your universal mission. Allow us to greet you with the profound words of St George Preca, glory of our priests and our catechists:

Salve Papa noster (Peace be with you Holy Father)
Salve Petra Fidei (Peace be with you Rock of Faith)
Salve Coeli Janitor (Peace be with you Heaven’s Doorkeeper)
Et Dominus sit tecum (And may the Lord be with you!)

Thank you, Your Holiness.

✠ Charles Jude Scicluna
    Archbishop of Malta


Il messaggio dell’Arcivescovo Charles Jude Scicluna


Grazie di cuore per la decisione di farci visita. Grazie per questa celebrazione solenne dell’Eucaristia. Grazie per il Suo amore per noi. 

La parola che oggi Lei ci ha donato sia per noi motivo di incoraggiamento nella vita, luce nel cammino, consolazione nelle difficoltà.

Nel primo secolo dopo la Resurrezione di Gesù, questa nostra terra, per grazia di Dio, ha avuto la grande fortuna di accogliere la luce del Vangelo con la presenza dell’Apostolo Paolo, che Publio, il protos dell’isola e i Maltesi accolsero insieme alle duecentosettantacinque persone naufragate, “con rara umanità” (At 28:2).

Padre Santo, l’odierna Visita e la Sua Benedizione, suscitino anche nel nostro cuore quella fiamma di carità e quella “rara umanità” che sono frutto dello Spirito del Signore.

Lo sguardo pieno di tenerezza della Madonna Damascena penetri le nostre anime e accompagni la Sua missione universale.

Santo Padre, ci permetta di salutarLa con le parole profonde di San Giorgio Preca, gloria del nostro clero e dei nostri catechisti:

Salve Papa noster
Salve Petra Fidei
Salve Coeli Janitor
Et Dominus sit tecum

Grazie ancora, Santità. 

✠ Charles Jude Scicluna
    Arcivescovo di Malta

Details about the gift from the Archbishop to Pope Francis

The painting that Archbishop Charles Jude Scicluna has given Pope Francis on behalf of the Church in Malta is named, ‘Misericordia et Misera’ and depicts the story of the adulterous woman. This story from the Gospel of St John is being read today, the Fourth Sunday of Lent.

The painting is by artist John Martin Borg who has been studying this subject of the adulterous woman since 1999. In his studies, the artist always presented the woman stripped of her dignity. In the artist’s words, the painting emphasises that many are those who judge and accuse, but there are also those capable of identifying God’s divine spark in humanity.

John Martin Borg said that “the interpretation of the law at the time was merciless. The scribes and Pharisees, together with the crowd, were about to stone and kill the adulterous woman, and they are depicted as looking upon her with stones in their hands, ready to implement the law, that instead of bringing about justice, eliminates life. The scribes and the Pharisees consider themselves morally correct and their behaviour justified because they were following the law, although, in reality, they are actually using the same law to trap Jesus.”

Christ is portrayed dressed in white for He is pure in heart and spirit. Draped over His shoulder is a red cloak which represents His divine nature. With mercy and comfort, Christ extends his arms towards the adulterous woman and offers her His own red cloak to cover her body – a simple, symbolic act that restores the woman’s lost dignity. With this gesture, Jesus invites her to partake in His divine nature.

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