A Maltese delegation made up of Fr Martin Micallef, Director of Id-Dar tal-Providenza, Mr Natalino Psaila, a deaf person, and Mrs Rita Portelli, interpreter of the Maltese Sign Language, took part in the second Catholic European meeting for Deaf persons that took place in the city of Prague in the Czech Republic. This bi-annual meeting is meant for representatives of the Catholic Church in European countries, who are involved in pastoral work with Deaf persons, to meet up and share experiences, projects as well as difficulties encountered with in their respective countries.
The meeting was officially opened by H.E. Mgr Dominik Jaroslav Duka O.P., Cardinal of Prague, who also celebrated mass for all the participants in St Vitu’s Cathedral.
During the meeting, the Maltese representatives had the opportunity to share the experiences of the Malta Diocese with Deaf Persons amongst which are the setting up of a Deaf Ministry Team, a Saturday evening mass in the chapel of the University of Malta interpreted with the Maltese Sign Language, an interpretation service for those preparing for the Sacraments, new resources such as the readings of the Liturgy of the Word and other prayers in the Maltese Sign Language that one can easily access on You Tube or the Laikos Website.
Other countries taking part besides the Czech Republic and Malta were Poland, Italy, Holland, Ireland, the Ukraine, Spain, France, Germany, Slovenia and Hungary.
Poland was chosen to host the third European meeting that will take place in 2019.