Your Eminence, thank you so much for sharing your wisdom and your enthusiasm for the Gospel. Thank you also for tickling our imagination and warming our hearts with this call to be pilgrims and missionaries; but also to find, discover and enjoy, the Galilies in our myths, where the Lord promises an encounter of love, mercy and compassion. 

Welcome to our islands, as you know Malta’s eptimology is rich. The Greeks called it ‘a land of honey’. I hope that you had a sweet welcome. The Phoenicians called it ‘Malat’ – ‘safe haven’. For centuries people have felt safe here. We have been invaded, we have been attacked, but we have always felt protected. And we have also been blessed around AD 60, by a shipwreck, and an apostle of Jesus who came, and stayed with us for three months, and brought us the powerful name of Jesus, not only by being freed of the venomous bite of the viper, but also, by healing all the sick of our islands – Paul the apostle. We are grateful for this divine providence. 

But we thank you for your presence, your Eminence, because you work closely with Our Holy Father Pope Francis, taking care of missionaries, lands and dioceses, with all that entails. You also bring to us this fresh air of an Easter, that is full of hope and promise. So as we say in Maltese, Grazzi ħafna. Thank you so much Your Eminence.       

✠ Charles Jude Scicluna
    Arċisqof ta’ Malta

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