Celebrate the feast of Maria Bambina for 9 days in Mellieha
The Mellieha Village Festa celebrations begin at the end of August. The statue of the Maria Bambina is taken out of the vault. A nine-day “in-Novena” period begins. In addition to the four titular statues of Maria Bambina, there are 13 lovingly sculpted statues in the church square. The main statue for the feast of Maria Bambina was created by the sculptor Pietro Paolo Azzopardi. The statue was erected around 1860 and is restored every few decades. Most recently in 2022 for six months in a special workshop in Senglea and Xagħra.
What is offered at the Feast of Maria Bambina in Mellieha?
Every evening from 8 p.m. onwards, a lively hustle and bustle with music and entertainment starts in the church square of Mellieha. On many days, the march of the music band “Il-Marc ta’ Fil-Ghodu” (the morning march) through different streets of Mellieha takes place from around 7 pm. It is a highlight of the festival for many citizens in Mellieha. Mobile kiosks offer Maltese pastries such as Mqaret, Maltese Honey Rings, Peanut Brittle Nougat or Pastizzi. Besides the filled pastries with nougat, heirloom or cheese, there are drinks, hot dogs, ice cream, burgers, kebabs, fries and many types of fast food. The day ends daily with the traditional Maltese fireworks. On some days there is the Maltese ground fireworks giggifogu. And if you haven’t had enough of celebrating yet, use 9.9 as an “extra holiday” Xalata on Malta’s biggest sandy beach, Mellieha Bay.
What is the highlight of the Feast of Maria Bambina?
On 8.9., it comes at 7 pm, thousands of believers and spectators expect in front of the Paris Church the Maria Bambina in Mellieha. It starts a magnificent fireworks display that lasts almost four hours. The bells ring for about 15 minutes. The archpriest of Mellieha Dun Joe Caruana enters the gate of the Paris Church with other priests. At the end of the bell ringing, the band plays the hymn of the patron saint. Now the priests begin the 3-hour procession through Mellieha. Followed by the life-size statue of Mary carried on shoulders. The walk is accompanied by thousands of believers and tourists. Around 10 pm reaches the church. The bands play the hymn of the patron saint and other Marian hymns. With the collective singing of Ave Maria, the statue enters the Paris Church. The fireworks end around 10:30 p.m.
What is the difference between the feast of Mary’s birth and the Immaculate Conception?
On 8 December, the Roman Catholic Church celebrates the conception of the parents Joachim and Anna, and their daughter Mary, the mother of Jesus of Nazareth. This day is nine months before the feast of the Nativity of Mary (Feast of Maria Bambina).
The official name for Mary’s Election or Immaculate Conception:
Solemnity of the Virgin and Mother of God, conceived without original sin (Sollemnitas In Conceptione Immaculata Beatae Mariae Virginis).
This is not a virgin conception. Mary is without the stain of original sin from Paradise, the bite into the apple of the forbidden tree. This sin is to be inherited by all men. Mary is free for God and good through the Immaculate Conception.
Since 1708, Pope Clement XI has prescribed the celebration of Mary’s conception for the Catholic Church. On Advent Sunday, the celebration of the Immaculate Conception moves to 9 December.
Age of papal infallibility
Pope Pius IX enshrined this belief on 8 December 1854:
The Blessed Virgin Mary, at the first moment of her conception, was preserved pure from every stain of hereditary guilt by a unique gift of grace and prerogative of Almighty God in view of the merits of Christ Jesus, the Saviour of the human race.
Since the dogma of Pope Pius IX, the pope is practically infallible. A pope judges “ex cathedra” on matters of faith and morals. On 18 July 1970, a council adopted the constitution “Pastor aeternus” with two votes against it. Surprisingly, the next day Napoleon III started the German-French war, which interrupted the council.
FAQs – Do you have questions about Feast of Maria Bambina? We will give you the answers!
Where can you see the Maria Bambina outside Malta?
The name Maria Bambina is said to have originated in Milan (Italy) since 1007. There, the church of Santa Maria Fulcorina was dedicated to the birth of Mary. It later became the Milan Cathedral of Santa Maria Major. In bronze letters, Mariae Nascenti (Mary, the Child) adorn the main entrance. From Milan, the name Maria Bambina had spread throughout the world. For example, in Rome’s Church of San Rocco, the altar is dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary, Maria Bambina (source themarianroom.com/maria-bambina/). Other sources report that Mary’s birth has been celebrated since the 5th century.
Was Maria Bambina a Maltese?
No, the Maria Bambina is the expression for Mother of God, as her time as child in Malta. A name that has stood for the Mother of God in Milan at least since 1007. Malta was converted to Christianity by Saint Paul about 60 years after Christ.
Why is Feast of Maria Bambina celebrated on 08.09.?
The day is the birthday from the Blessed Virgin Maria. In other, September 8, 1565 was the end of the Great Siege by the Ottoman Empire. This victory is dedicated to the birth of the Virgin Mary.
Is the Feast of Maria Bambina a holiday in Malta?
The feast of Maria Bambina, or the Nativity of Maria, has been celebrated in the Roman Catholic Church on September 8 since around the 5th century. It commemorates the birth of Mary, the mother of Jesus Christ.
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