Sunday, February 16, 2014

At the Vatican in 1966

Group photo - I am on the the front, far right
I take you today back to the summer of 1966 when I was chosen as one of the altar-boys to serve at the Vatican. A year earlier, a new initiative was started having a group of altar-boys from Malta to take over serving at the Vatican for the two summer months. The purpose was to replace the Italian altar-boys who serve the Masses all year round. I was chosen in 1966 and I was grateful to serve many Masses of various priests from around the world on the many altars spread around the entire Basilica. We had to serve as many as 5 Masses a day, but we were free in the afternoon and evening to take trips to various landmarks around Rome. 
Kissing the ring of Pope Paul VI, August 1966

I was also grateful to have a picture taken of me kissing the ring of the Fisherman, Pope Paul VI, with the then-bishop of Malta, Msgr Michael Gonzi present as well as our Director Fr Joseph Delia. The altar-boys still go every summer, cherishing a tradition that is coming close to 50 years. So many of the altar-boys became priests, including 4 from my group.
Between Masses at the Vatican

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