Malta National Day & Our Lady Queen of Victories 2022

10th September, 2022

Malta National Day with Archbishop.jpg

This year all the Maltese Societies under the banner of the Maltese Community Council, wisely decided to combine the celebration of The Queen of Victories Feast with the Malta National Day Event. It proved to be a wise decision, much to the satisfaction and pleasure of those who attended.


The celebration of Our Lady Queen of Victories Feast commenced on Friday night at the Lockleys Parish Church with the usual tribute to the “Bambina”. Given the terrible cold weather with showers the attendance was even better than had been expected. It was inspiring to see.


Due to the inclement weather the usual procession outside didnot take place, instead the Maltese Queen of Victories Band adjourned to the rear of the Church to play the Marian hymns inside. As the time approached to start the evening’s ceremony, Fr Alfred was unable to come due to the stormy weather.


Undaunted by this news, guided by Sr.Bonnie and dear friend Mr.Charles Zarb, the Tribute celebrations commenced with the various members of the Maltese Community and representatives from each Maltese Society brought their beautiful floral tributes and laid them at the glorious statue of the Bambina while their corresponding colleague read prose, poetry or prayers dedicated to our Bambina. It was beautiful, in fact I read this on ‘facebook’ a couple of days afterwards, “ It was great listening to the wonderful words of inspiration from so many of our cherished community. The floral tributes are simply stunning”.


The occasion was enhanced by the organist Robert Coombe who accompanied the melodic choir under the direction of Sr.Bonnie Attard. The Rosary was recited and in between every decade, the church echoed the sounds of the Marian hymns of the Maltese Queen of Victories Band.


Despite the obstacles that the bad weather threw at us, the evening was a dignified and solemn occasion enjoyed by the congregation. The cuppa, snacks and social gathering that followed in the parish hall gave everyone an opportunity to top off this beautiful night.

Saturday, the next day, the Lockleys Parish Hall, was exquisitely decorated, much to the delight of the packed house. The atmosphere was certainly a jubilant one. It was a delight for me to introduce the distinguished guests which included Mr Agius, the President of the Maltese Community Council, Mrs. Carmen Spiteri, our Hon Maltese Councill of SA, MP Zoe Bettison representing the Premier of SA, MP Matt Cowdrey representing the Leader of the Opposition, our friend Fr.Alfred Farrugia the Adelaide Hills Parish Priest, The Lockleys Parish Priest Fr. Michael Trainor, His Grace the Archbishop of Adelaide Patrick O’Regan, and our dear Franciscan Sisters Sr. Bonnie Attard, Sr, Natalea, and Sr.Rita Spiteri.

Enhancing the start of the evening, the Maltese Queen of Victories Band played the Maltese & Australian national anthems. It was certainly special to have this occasion officially opened in this manner!


After some of the guests delivered their complimentary speeches, His Grace, Archbishop O’Regan, in his friendly manner greeted the audience and recited our grace before meals and the very appetizing Maltese style entree was served, while DJ Eric entertained us with his bright music. The dinner catered by Joe Cassar was delicious as was the music and also the singing by our local star Stacey Saliba. The atmosphere was great.

The hall was packed, and our benefactor Chev Charles Figallo with his many guests enjoyed the dancing and also joining in the singing along to such popular oldies as Volare! By the smiles on everybody’s face, it was evident that the night was an entertaining success. The raffle had many great prizes, most of which were donated by the Maltese Societies and many guests alike. Thanks to all that helped, the night was a huge success, one that we had not seen for a while.


The next day, Sunday celebrations started in the afternoon with the Festa Mass celebrated by our Maltese priest, Fr.Alfred Farrugia, and enhanced by the Maltese Choir accompanied by our favorite organist, Robert Coombe. The attendance was also good, especially considering the threatening weather.


The ceremony of the Laying of the wreaths was well executed, with the Maltese Societies and others placing their wreaths by the window of remembrance at the front of the church. Charles Zarb guided the proceedings in his usual gentlemanly manner and then he called upon Ray Grima to conduct the recitation of the Ode of Remembrance which he did very eloquently after his brief explanation for this ceremony. As the various representative stood by the Altar, Joe Camilleri & Ron Borg, played that touching mournful Last Post and Revellie while the 2 flags were lowered and raised as a salute for the fallen. It was a touching ceremony which was gracefully executed.


Due to the threat of the weather, the usual outside procession did not take place but none the less, the Maltese Queen of Victories Band gave 2 excellent concerts inside the packed hall where everyone was enjoying their Maltese Pastizzi and other tucker with gusto! Much to everyone’s delight the night finished with the very jubilant ‘Brijju’ with the children and some adults showering everyone with confetti while the band played their happy Maltese Marches.


celebrations went off with a resounding success because this year there was a fresh approach and the Maltese Societies united together, working hand in hand to a common goal - to celebrate these 2 great Maltese feasts together, the Vitoria and the Malta National day together for the very first time. I must say, it was a breath of fresh air to see Maltese Societies work together like this. It’s marvelous to see what can be achieve when we unite and work together, Societies and also many individuals who put their efforts together to re-ignite our Maltese Communities! Thank you to all the many individuals who took the effort to help in this worthy Maltese Community cause.


By Sr Bonnie Attard FCJ