Towns and Villages. Index
Nativity of Our Lady Parish Church
Mellieha was one of ten parishes mentioned in a document of 1436, but ceased to be a parish when the locality was abandoned for fear of Saracen raids. The sanctuary of Our Lady though, the oldest in Malta, remained a centre of devotion. Mellieha became a parish again in 1844. On the 5th September 1883, the Parish Priest, Rev Francis Maria Magri blessed the first stone of the new church. The new church was blessed by Bishop Pietro Pace on 5th September 1897. It was conscrated by Bishop Mauro Caruana¬Żon the 18th February 1930. The main titular picture is by Giuseppe Cali and depicts the triumph of Malta and the knights over the saracens in 1565.
Late 1890's
Nativity of Our Lady parish church
Chapel Private
Ta' Qorqa at tal-Ahrax, outdoor with a statue of Our Lady.
Chapel Private
Another private chapel nowadays not in use lies at Marfa close to the Riviera Hotel.
Immaculate Conception tal-Ahrax
This tiny chapel is perched on the opposite side of the White Tower of De Redin on the cliff of the tip of the peninsula looking North. The present Chapel was built in 1961 after the previous one, deteriorated due to prevailing wind and sea spray. Legends abound explaining the reason for the chapel in such a forsaken place. (picture of old church courtesy of Tony Bonello)
Present Immaculate Conception chapel
Before the 1960's
Original titular by unknown painter done in 1730, now at the Mellieha Sanctuary.
Titular picture Latest
Nativity of Our Lady
The Christian Brothers built a novitiate in Wied Zejtuna. Nowadays it is being used as a house for retreats. During the summer months, on Saturday Evenings, Mass is celebrated in the chapel of the centre for the people enjoying their holiday in the locality.
Nativity of Our Lady Sanctuary
This is the oldest Marian Sanctuary in Malta and is still a pilgrimage centre. It was visited by Pope John Paul II. As one approaches, on an ornate archway outside there is an inscription in Latin and old Maltese: In You was the hope of our fathers. They hoped and you saved them.
An old engraving of the Sanctuary
Our Lady of Ransom Selmun
The only chapel dedicated to Our Lady of Ransom stood, till the recent past, within Selmun castle built during the 18th century. On the 13th October 1792, the Monte di Redenzione founded in this chapel an ecclesiastical living which was recorded, on that day, by Notary Francesco Mamo. The altar piece of the chapel was painted by Antoine Favray. The Chapel was used in later years as a church by the people resident in the area, but when a British consortium took over the Palace and built an hotel near it, a new chapel was built nearby to replace the one inside, the titular by Favray being transferred there. Marriages may be held in the new chapel.
Sacred Heart
Chapel in 'Nuzzo' convent of the sisters of the Sacred Heart on the road to Selmun built in 1947.
St Agatha
A small Chapel of this dedication used to exist in a tower built during the time of the Knights of St John. The St Agatha tower which is more commonly known as the Red tower because of its appearance, lies on a hill on the other side of Ghadira bay. A plaque above the main door of the tower dated 1649 declares that it was not a Sanctuary for those running from the law, (Non gode immunita ecclesia).