Towns and Villages. Index
St.Bartholomew Parish Church
Bishop Gargallo raised the village of Gargur to the dignity of a parish on the 16th July 1610. The present church, one of Tomaso Dingli's first, was built in 1610 and was consacrated by bishop Alpheran de Bussan on the 22nd April 1736. It has some old paintings and tryptics in the sacristy and others by well known painters such as G.Cali' in the church itself.
Inside pictures Jasmine Grech
St.Bartholomew parish church
Assumption ta' Bernarda
Known as Bernarda's chapel because it was endowed by Bernarda Cauchi on the 10th August 1571. In 1653. Luca Mifsud asked permission to rebuild this church which request was granted him. He duly carried out this work before 1659. Religious functions were still being held there through WWII after which time it fell into disuse. It is still private property but the Francalanza family has loaned it to the parish as a store for church furnishings.
Assumption ta' Bernarda
Assumption Maghtab
A chapel had already been built in this general area by 1575. It was one of the most frequented Marian sanctuaries. In 1653, a new church was built to replace it some distance away through donations. In 1674 it was described as dedicated to the Immaculate Conception because of the painting on the main altar of the church. Today's 18th century chapel is still in regular use with Mass celebrated every weekend and on first Fridays.
Assumption Maghtab
Assumption taz-Zellieqa
Mons.Dusina, during his pastoral visit of 1575, recorded that the church was built by a young woman as thanksgiving for a grace she received during an apparition of the Virgin which took place in 1560. In 1608 it had four altars and its barrel vaulted roof rested on seven arches. The church was thoroughly rebuilt in 1650-56 and nowadays is open regularly every Saturday.
Assumption Zellieqa
Our Lady of Snows
Before the end of the 16th century, in Malta, there were already two churches dedicated to the 'Ad Nives' - Of Snows. The first is the only one mentioned in Dusina's records and was situated at Xwieki, outside Gargur. Wooden doors had to be provided for it to avoid deconsecration. In the meantime the burdens attached to this church were transferred to the more important church in the nearby village. This church was no longer mentioned afterwards.
Around the 19th century a small church with adjoining rooms was built. In time it was deconsacrated and the building together with the rooms used as a residence. Only lately (2008), during some construction work inside the residence, did some traces of the church resurface.
St Catherine TaxXwieki
There was a Visitation church at Wied id-Dis already recorded in 1598. Nearby stood a garden belonging to Fr Giuliano Borg, parish priest of Naxxar. He himself provided a bequest for this church. Rebuilt in 1611 by the heirs of Father Giuliano, this chapel was most probably Siculo-Norman in shape. In 1662 it was rededicated to St Catherine, even though its altar piece also represented the Visitation and the feast continued to be celebrated here. Bishop Molina in 1680 recorded its beauty in his report of the pastoral visit. It was deconsacrated in 1866 after being abandoned after being ruined in a violent storm. Nowadays there is no more than a pile of stones to show it existed. The photo below was taken in 1935 by Sir Temi Zammit.
In the Gargur area, there existed a chapel dedicated to this Saint (San Girgor in Maltese) from whom the town most probably took its name. Of this chapel we have only some of the foundations left.
St.John Baptist
First said to be built in 1223 by banished inhabitants of Celano Italy. It served as a parish church for Gargur until the time when the present church was built. Bishop Balaguer closed it in 1659 but it was rebuilt in 1675 and re-opened for service. The village cemetery is adjacent to it and was built for the 1592 and 1676 plague victims.
Church of St.John Baptist
St.John Evangelist
Built early in the eighteenth century in fulfillment of a vow made by John Portelli who escaped capture by Barbary corsairs, this small chapel is octagonal and bears the date 1757. The Franciscans took over the chapel in 1947. In 1959 they started building the Porziuncola House nearby, which soon became an important centre for retreats.
St.John Evangelist
St.Mary of the Angels
The Franciscan friars, since 1947, resided in a small house at Bahar ic-Caghaq near the church of St.John the Evangelist. Porziuncola Retreat House was founded in 1957 and named after the chapel of the Virgin Mary of the Angels, where Francis of Assisi discovered his evangelical calling in 1208. On the 16 July 1973 the Friars started building a small convent and a pastoral centre. A new church was started in 1992, finished and blessed on the 2nd August 1995. They also have a Chapel in the retreat house.
St.Mary of the Angels.
Chapel at Porziuncola House Church at Porziuncola House
The church was first built in the 15th century, but Mgr.Dusina closed it together with a large number of rural and village churches in 1575. It was rebuilt in 1656 and used again. For a time it served as a store for church furnishings until recently when in 2005 it was restored and is now used for Perpetual Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.
St.Nicholas Church
St.Peter Fisherman
At Bahar ic-Caghak which nowadays forms part of Ibrag, this abandoned chapel is serving as a store for dilapidated furniture. Even though the altar is still there, the paintings have been missing for ages now and the building itself in total disrepair inside and out. Lately there have been discussions about its restoration.
St.Peter Fisherman chapel