Fr Julian shares his experiences of his first year at the Chapel of the Ressurection at Hilltop Gardens.
Today is the first anniversary of my appointment as chaplain at Hilltop Gardens at Naxxar. It is a retirement home that caters for both independent living as well as a care home for the elderly. My duty is to celebrate Mass daily, twice on Saturday and twice on Sunday, (including an English Mass) plus any additional Masses that are needed for visiting groups.
|Playing the Ave Maria during one of the Masses|
The chapel itself is very modern as you can see from the photos. The whole complex was opened in December 2015 and presently has close to 200 residents. My Masses are attended also by the local neighbors who enjoy the simplicity of the liturgies without the huge crowds one finds in larger parishes. An occasional meditation on my flute adds to the warmth and atmosphere of the community. The chapel holds close to 80 people and is surrounded by a moat, which gives it the impression that it is a floating chapel. Many of the residents are wheeled into the chapel in their wheel-chairs and those who cannot attend can follow the Mass on their closed-circuit TV in their rooms. After each Mass I go around with communion calls to anywhere between 15 and 25 residents who are bed-ridden.
|Foot-washing ceremony on Holy Thursday|
The chapel is dedicated to the Risen Christ, and the floor is covered with onyx, a special type of marble that the owner found in a quarry, and saved it for this chapel, which he designed himself. Tomorrow I will show you more photos of the artistic aspect of the chapel. For today you can see the inside during various celebrations, including the Holy Thursday foot-washing ceremony.
Hilltop Gardens Management would like to thank Fr Julian for his service and dedication throughout his first year at Hilltop Gardens.