PM Robert Abela has paid a courtesy visit to Archbishop Charles Scicluna and Auxiliary Bishop Joe Galea Curmi and, at his request, this took place at the Clergy’s Home in Birkirkara where 46 priests are residents, many of them elderly.
Archbishop Scicluna thanked the PM for choosing the Clergy’s Home for this meeting because he said that here, the Church illustrates solidarity in practice, especially by caring for priests who have given their lives for the people, some of them as missionaries. Mons. Scicluna promised the Church’s support to the PM.
“We promise our complete commitment to continue co-operating with the state for the common good, because at this moment we greatly wish to send a strong signal of hope to the whole country.”
While speaking about the work which has been carried out together in various sectors and the financial help which the Government gives to Church entities, Dr Abela said that this is also done because he firmly believes in the good work which the Church does.
“The Church gives society a lot back through its work and therefore I felt that I should be the one to leave Castille and come to the Church, come to the home where it is giving such a good service. There are so many residents here who gave their service to the community and I think it was a message which needed to be sent which I really believe in. That we have values in common, values which principally deal with social issues and I wanted to send this message.”
Questioned about what he said on Dissett when he said that the Catholic religion should remain enshrined in the Constitution, the PM said that the direction of the country will remain the same, in other words it will continue to be secular, but he emphasised that Article 2 of the Constitution is balanced by the fundamental rights of man including the right to practice one’s religion. On the subject of abortion, PM Abela said that while he is Prime Minister, abortion will remain illegal.
Questioned about his relationship with civil society, the PM said that he wants to be close to it and announced that the Great Siege monument, which is being used as a memorial for Daphne Caruana Galizia, would not be cleared.
“I have already given instructions that tonight after the vigil the memorial should not be cleaned up.”
The PM met several residents during his visit to the Clergy’s Home.