Ecumenical Remembrance Service

The 1,500 or so people who lost their lives in the Mediterranean as they fled Libya since the start of the conflict on small, overcrowded boats to seek safety in Europe were commemorated in a poignant ecumenical prayer service held this evening. The service was jointly organised by Jesuit Refugee Service, St Andrew's Scots Church (incorporating the Church of Scotland and the Methodist community) and the Andreasgemeinde (the German Lutheran congregation in Malta).

Against the backdrop of a departing cruise liner and the majestic walls of Fort St Angelo on the opposite side of the harbour, members of the diplomatic corps, immigrants, Maltese people, members of the different NGOs and the UNHCR, several expatriates living in Malta and members of different Catholic religious orders assembled at the waterfront by the Valletta Fish Market to pray for the dead.

Readings from the New Testament in English, Tigrinya and Amharic were interspersed with songs and other prayers. The prayers included one for the sisters and priests still serving in Libya and who were of tremendous help to all caught up in the Libyan conflict.

Beautiful red carnations were lovingly placed in the sea by all those present as a sign of respect for those who died. A message for the occasion, written by former US Ambassador to Malta Douglas Kmiec, who left Malta on 31 May, provided a most appropriate concluding reflection.

Read message by former US Ambassador Professor Douglas W. Kmiec

View photos and video of the event

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