Id-Dar tal-Providenza in collaboration with RTK 4 Charity, the Armed Forces of Malta and the St John’s Co-Cathedral Foundation organised a concert to launch the celebrations planned to commemorate the golden jubilee of the Home. The concert was held at the Co-Cathedral with the participation of the Band of the Armed Forces of Malta led by Mro John Ivan Borg, soprano Rosabelle Bianchi, tenor Musician Gunner Zammit Georg and the Bel Canto and De La Salle College choirs under the patronage of the President of Malta Marie Louise Coleiro Preca and the Apostolic Administrator, Bishop Charles J. Scicluna. For the occasion we heard the premiere of the musical work “Ispirazzjoni Divina” (Divine Inspiration) music by Mro Ray Sciberras with lyrics by Sunny Aquilina.
In his address, Fr Martin Micallef, Director of Id-Dar tal-Providenza, said that the concert which was meant to raise funds in aid of the Home should also be the prelude for next year, a special year during which id-Dar tal-Providenza will be commemorating the 50th Anniversary of its foundation by the lamented Mgr Mikiel Azzopardi. The theme for these celebrations is: “Respect, Rights and Dignity”. These are the values that the Home embraces heartily and that should be the inspiration for the Home’s work in the years to come. May these three words also inspire our society so that persons with disability will be truly treated as equals.
Special guest speaker was Mrs Vicky Gauci, a person with disability and lecturer at the University of Malta, who reiterated that it was Mgr Mikiel Azzopardi who fifty years ago saw it fit to ensure that persons with disability in Malta and Gozo will be treated with more dignity. Vicky Gauci said that from then on and with the unstinted efforts of dedicated persons, we started to comprehend that a disability is not only a result of a biological deficiency but is also the result of obstacles raised by society itself and by our own environment that withheld from persons with disability those opportunities that the rest of society enjoyed.
Bishop Scicluna referred to the President’s use of the phrase “inclusive democracy” whereby all citizens of this country of ours felt welcomed. He refered to what he termed Dun Mikiel’s divine inspiration and said that it needed someone’s help. It came in the form of a generous woman who planned to go on a trip with the hundred pounds she saved but decided to give them instead to this great visionary, who wasn’t just a dreamer but also someone who enthused others. And God sees to it that help comes in the way of all especially those who have grand visions.
The President of Malta, Marie Louise Coleiro Preca said that no one can fathom what Dun Mikiel did. He sincerely believed that dignity and not pity should be shown and this was the huge difference he emancipated. Dignity creates solidarity but pity just robs the dignity. However, Dun Mikiel also motivated unity because he drew to him the whole nation. And so, continued the President, this concert was a grand opening for this important event of the foundation by Dun Mikiel of id-Dar tal-Providenza and we should really praise him for that but it is also a celebration of a united people of Malta and Gozo, an immense value that distinguishes us from other nations, a love that reflects in our solidarity. It also has to be a recognition of the fact that the Catholic Church in Malta gave a huge contribution and is certain to continue to do so in the social sector as well as in the motivation of volunteering.