Archbishop denounces construction chaos in VE Day homily


Archbishop Charles Scicluna denounced the building chaos in Malta during his VE Day homily, asking the public to reflect more deeply on what the Maltese have done to their own architecture.

In the Catholic tradition, September 8 is a celebration of the birth of the Virgin Mary, mother of Jesus. However, the date coincides with two key moments in Maltese history, the end of the Great Siege by the Ottoman Empire in 1565 and the end of the Second World War’s Siege of Malta in 1942.

Dwelling on the significance of the date in Maltese history, Scicluna said September 8 should not be a static moment in history, but people should appreciate the responsibility that comes with defining moments in history. common heritage of the Maltese.

“The first, in 1565, confirmed us in our religious heritage where there was a choice by the Maltese to remain under the influence of Christian culture instead of falling again under the possession of Muslim tradition”, a- he declared.

“It was a huge strategic, political and religious fight and we have to understand that these celebrations are not only about bringing us joy, but they come with some responsibility. We were lucky to have the Knights defending us in a way that we just missed the trauma of slavery, something that our Gozitan counterparts didn’t come out unscathed.

It was a watershed moment and in it Christian Europe recognized the role of the Knights and Grand Master La Vallette in preventing slavery by the Ottomans, and it was also what prompted the Knights to stay on these islands. and start building this city, a living monument. to their heritage.

Scicluna went on to say that the end of the Second World War in Malta marked the end of the danger of being part of the Nazi regime and losing the full right to self-determination. He asked people to look at what we have done with this precious right.

“Originally, in 1964, the Maltese wanted to achieve independence on September 8, not because they wanted to dwell on the past but because they wanted the day to confirm our identity and a sense of responsibility. which should not be lost, despite the British having other plans,” the Archbishop said.

“What do we do with this heritage today, when we have the right to determine our own culture, our spirituality and even our architecture”, he asked.

“We can look at this magnificent cathedral, the wonderful architecture of this city and even the beauty of Grand Harbor and you see a harmony of architecture.”

“Then we look a little beyond, you can see what we’ve done, what we’re building when we have control over the reigns.”

“I leave the answer to the conscience of each of you.”

The Archbishop’s call to examine the state of development in the country follows the planning authority’s blessing for the construction of more apartments in Sannat in a project linked to prolific developer Joseph Portelli, by the through his frequent business partner Mark Agius.

This is not the first time that the Church of Malta has spoken out against overdevelopment in Malta, particularly through the Church Environment Commission, which has criticized both politicians and state authorities for allowing the construction industry to soar beyond sustainable limits.

However, the Church has not been exempt from its own controversy surrounding development issues and has been criticized for handling the Gozo land saga as well as the sale of land in Għargħur which is under development. into a large block of great height. in the heart of the village.

The state also commemorated the day with President George Vella laying a wreath at the foot of the Grand Siege Monument in Valletta.

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