Hundreds of people crowded St George’s Basilica yesterday evening to watch the titular statue of St George come out of its niche.
The celebration started at around 8.15pm, once the La Stella Band had finished its march from Taċ-Ċawla to St George’s Square, where it hailed the Patron Saint of Gozo as the statue appeared for a while at the Basilica portals.
For yesterday’s occasion, the two restored Bohemian crystal chandeliers were lit for the first time after decades as the statue of the saint was finally placed under the central arch of the main aisle, where it will stay for veneration during these festive days.
A crowd of youth and adolescents, the largest in years, then stayed in the church for the Ċelebrazzjoni ta’ Xhieda Kristjana, where Fr Marcello Ghirlando ofm led a reflection on our fears and how faith in God gives us the strength to carry on, as it gave St George to the point it made him his faithful witness to the end.
Today is the first day of the Holy Triduum. The main liturgy, which includes the homily on the saint by Fr Anthony Bajada, starts at 6.30pm with the singing of Vespers.