Another restoration phase on the parish church of the Assumption in Ħal Balzan has been completed. The works were inaugurated by Bishop Joe Galea Curmi and Parliamentary Secretary Stefan Zrinzo Azzopardi. The Church authorities worked hand in hand with Government to source the necessary funds, with the parishioners forking out 20% and the remaining 80% coming from European Union funds.
The 122,000 euro project included restoration of the transept of the Crucifix, the outer walls of the sacristy and the bell tower. Maintenance was carried out on the clocks, material stuck to the walls was removed and the stonework was cleaned up.
“This part which covers the bell tower and sacristy is the most prominent part besides the main facade, and we are handing back to the parishioners and the Maltese public an architectural jewel which we wish to be kept open for visitors to enter and come across the treasure. The outer covering is beautiful, and we now need to find the inner treasure in order to continue growing as a Christian community.”
The work was carried out under the direction of the Archdiocese Cultural Foundation, with the Archdiocese Administrative Secretary Michael Pace Ross saying that this church, which started being built 350 years ago, enjoys Grade 1 Schedule. Pace Ross added it is the responsibility of the Church that the cultural heritage of the archdiocese is preserved together with the traditions which make up the Maltese people.
80% of the expenses came from European funds, with Parliamentary Secretary Stefan Zrinzo Azzopardi saying this is part of the four million euro investment from which various projects have been carried out to safeguard the ecclesiastical heritage.
“Through these European funds restoration has been carried out on the outer facades of the church, including to the transept of the crucifix, the bell tower and the sacristy walls. It is important that the rich heritage left to us by our ancestors is safeguarded and handed over to the next generation.”
Bishop Galea Curmi thanked the parishioners for paying for 20% of the costs, adding that the Ħal Balzan church is a jewel and a place where parishioners are made to feel welcome.