A dream come true! For quite some time I was disturbed by the fact that in our primary school St Joan Antide in Malta the first Holy Communion of our girls is celebrated with great preparation and solemnity, while in our secondary school our girls receive the sacrament of confirmation in the parish, and nothing is done at school to highlight this event.

Finally, with the help of the pastoral team, we decided to take the girls who received confirmation this year, to Rome and reconfirm our Faith in the heart of the Catholic Church. Thirty-three girls joined this initiative and were accompanied by 8 adults. We arrived in Rome on the 10th February, which for us Maltese is the feast of the shipwreck of St. Paul in Malta.

We dedicated this day to St. Paul with a Mass celebrated by a Maltese Jesuit who works in Rome and a visit to the Basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls. We were also “baptized” again with an incessant rain!

On the second day – the climax of the experience – we went to St. Peter’s. We met with the Maltese Cardinal Msgr. Mario Grech with whom we spoke briefly about synodality. We are very proud to have a Maltese cardinal in Rome.

Then we went to the square where we prayed the Angelus with the Pope and he greeted us from the window “I greet the confirmands of Malta” and we responded with an applause and pulled up the yellow balloons we had prepared.

After this exciting experience, we headed to the Provincial House where the sisters welcomed us and offered us a warm and dry place where we could calmly eat our pizza. In the afternoon we attended the Mass in English at St. Anne’s and then in the Vatican, at the tomb of Peter we renewed our baptismal vows. We could not miss a quick look at the statue of St. Jeanne-Antide.

The third and last day was spent in our Mother House. The welcome and generous availability of the sisters was wonderful! The girls had the opportunity to learn about the reality of the house for young people, the Thouret Foundation and the novitiate. All realities that, seen up close, are understood, and appreciated more. We also enjoyed an abundant packed lunch in the “small refectory”. We were also lucky to meet and greet Mother General sister M. Rosa and all sisters present at that time in our Mother House.

In the afternoon, the leaders had the courage and energy to accompany the young girls on foot in about 2 hours to visit the Roman Forum, the Colosseum, Piazza Venezia, Piazza Navona and the Pantheon! A marathon… but we needed this too!!

Let us pray and hope that this brief but meaningful experience will return to the girls, when they will mature, as a reminder of their freely chosen and convinced commitment to be living members of the Church which is the Mystical Body of Christ.

Sister Teresa Tonna

College Principal