Monsignor Charles Jude Scicluna, Archbishop of Malta

Biography

His Grace Mgr Charles J. Scicluna was born of Emanuel and Maria Carmela née Falzon in Toronto, Canada, on 15 May 1959.  The Scicluna family moved to Qormi, Malta, in 1960 and to Lija, Malta, in 1976. Mgr Scicluna was educated at Saint Sebastian Primary School, Qormi, at the Saint Joseph Secondary Technical School, Paola, and at Saint Edward’s College, Cottonera.  He entered the Law Course at the University of Malta in 1976 and he graduated Doctor of Laws in 1984.  After completing his Seminary studies and a Licentiate in Pastoral Theology at the Faculty of Theology, Tal-Virtù, he was ordained to the Roman Catholic priesthood by the Archbishop of Malta, Monsignor Joseph Mercieca, on 11 July 1986.  Monsignor Scicluna was sent to read Canon Law at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome and obtained the doctorate in Canon Law with specialization in Jurisprudence in 1991. After his Rome studies Mgr Scicluna worked on the Malta Metropolitan Tribunal as Defender of the Bond and was lecturer in Pastoral Theology and Canon Law at the University of Malta. He served in the parishes of Attard, Saint Gregory’s Sliema and Iklin, Lija.

He also served as Vice Rector at the Major Seminary between 1994 and 1995 when he was called to the Vatican to work on the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Segnatura as Substitute Promoter of Justice.  In 1996 he was appointed Postulator for the cause of beatification and canonisation of Dun Ġorġ Preca. In October 2002, Monsignor Scicluna was nominated Promoter of Justice at the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith detailed to investigate and prosecute the more grave crimes reserved to the exclusive competence of the Congregation. He has also lectured widely on issues concerning child protection in the Church, visiting a number of local churches in Europe, Asia, Africa, the Americas, and Australia. While working in Rome, Mgr Scicluna also helped with chaplaincy work at the Convent of the Nuns of Saint Bridget, Piazza Farnese, and as Extraordinary Confessor at the Venerable English College in Rome. Mgr Scicluna is a Visiting Lecturer in Penal Processes at the Pontifical Gregorian University (Rome). On 6th October 2012, Pope Benedict XVI nominated Mgr Scicluna as Auxiliary Bishop of Malta and Titular Bishop of San Leone. He was ordained Bishop on 24th November 2012. On 28th November 2012, he was nominated member of the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

On 18th October 2014, following the resignation of Mgr Paul Cremona O.P. from the office of Archbishop of Malta, Pope Francis nominated Mgr Scicluna as Apostolic Administrator sede vacante, with the authority to govern the Archdiocese of Malta until the new Archbishop of Malta takes canonical possession of the Archdiocese. On 21st January 2015, Pope Francis nominated Mgr Scicluna as President of the Special College within the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, to hear appeals in processes concerning serious offences established under the Motu Proprio Sacramentorum Sanctitatis Tutela. On 27th February 2015, Pope Francis appointed Mgr Scicluna as Archbishop of Malta. On 13th November 2018, Pope Francis also appointed Mgr Scicluna as Adjunct Secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith of the Holy See.

Coat of Arms

L-Arma araldika tal-Arċisqof Scicluna hija ispirata mill-arma tradizzjonalment assenjata lill-kunjom tal-familja li għandha żiemel rampanti u nofs qamar krexxenti ta’ lewn abjad/fidda fuq sfond aħmar. Mons. Scicluna żied il-warda safra/deheb imwerrqa bil-lewn aħdar.

L-isfond aħmar ifakkarna fil-mant ta’ Kristu waqt il-passjoni “imxarrab bid-demm” (Apok. 19, 13): «Imbagħad Pilatu ordna li jieħdu lil Ġesù u jagħtuh is-swat. Is-suldati nisġu kuruna tax-xewk u qegħduhielu fuq rasu, u libbsuh mantar aħmar skur. U bdew ġejjin quddiemu u jgħidulu: “Is-sliem għalik, ja sultan tal-Lhud!” U bdew jagħtuh bil-ħarta» (Ġw 19, 1-3).

Iż-żiemel abjad/fidda ifakkarna fid-dehra li kellu l-Appostlu Ġwanni dwar Ġesù Kristu stess: “Imbagħad rajt is-sema miftuħ, u kien hemm żiemel abjad! Dak li kien riekeb fuqu jissejjaħ Fidil u Veru (Fidelis et Verax); bil-ġustizzja hu jaqta’ l-ħaqq u jagħmel il-gwerra. Għajnejh qishom ħuġġieġa nar, b’ħafna dijademi fuq rasu, u b’isem miktub fuqu li ħadd ħliefu ma jafu. Kien liebes mantell imxarrab bid-demm, u jissejjaħ bl-isem “il-Kelma ta’ Alla”. Mexjin warajh, fuq żwiemel bojod, kien hemm l-eżerċti tas-sema, lebsin l-għażel abjad bla nikta. Fuq il-mantell u fuq koxxtu għandu miktub isem: “Sultan tas-slaten u Sid tas-sidien” (Apok. 19, 11-16).

In-nofs qamar krexxenti abjad/fidda iffakkarna fix-xbieha ta’ stabilità li joffri is-Salm 72: «Jinżel mill-muntanji s-sliem lill-poplu, tinżel mill-għoljiet il-ġustizzja. Hu jħares id-dritt tal-imsejknin tal-poplu, isalva l-fqajrin u jrażżan ’il min jgħakkishom. Ħa jdum kemm iddum ix-xemx; kemm idum il-qamar, minn żmien għal żmien». In-nofs qamar huwa wkoll simbolu tal-Verġni Marija u tal-Knisja, l-Għarusa ta’ Ġesù, b’riferenza għax-xbieha tal-għarusa fl-Għanja tal-Għanjiet: «Min hija dik li tielgħa bħaż-żerniq, sabiħa donnha l-qamar, tiddi bħax-xemx, tal-biża’ bħall-eżerċtu lest għat-taqbida?» (Għanj. 6, 10).

Il-warda safra/deheb tfakkarna fi xbieha oħra tal-Verġni Marija peress li l-għarusa fl-Għanja tal-Għanjiet hija mxebbħa mal-warda: «Ġnien magħluq tajjeb int, oħti, għarusa tiegħi, ġnien magħluq tajjeb, għajn issiġillata. Jinbet ġnien tar-rummien minn ilmijietek, flimkien mal-ogħla ħxejjex: il-ward tal-ħenna, u l-ispika, spika u żagħfran, qasab ifuħ, kannella, kull siġra tal-inċens, mirra, sabbara, u l-aqwa balzmi kollha» (Għanj. 4, 12-14).

Il-Motto bil-Latin: FIDELIS ET VERAX (Fidil u Veru) huwa meħud mill-Ktieb tal-Apokalissi 19, 11. Huwa t-titlu li jingħata lir-Rikkieb taż-żiemel abjad li huwa Ġesù Kristu nnifsu. In-nisrani jagħraf lir-Ragħaj it-tajjeb bħala ragħaj fidil f’kelmtu u li ma jqarraqx bil-merħla. L-isqof huwa meħud mill-merħla biex ikun Ragħaj fuq ix-xbieha tar-Ragħaj it-Tajjeb Fidil u Veru.

L-arma tinkludi l-pallium li hu bħal faxxa li jintlibes fuq il-pjaneta madwar l-għonq. Ikollu wkoll żewġ pendenti wieħed fuq quddiem, ieħor fuq wara. Fuq il-pallium ikun hemm irrakkmati sitt islaleb suwed. Il-pallium hu simbolu tal-awtorità tal-Arċisqof metropolita f’kommunjoni mal-Knisja ta’ Ruma.

Is-Salib Patrijarkali hu Salib Latin b’żewġ traversi orizzontali. It-traversa ta’ fuq tissejjaħ it-titulus cruces, jew il-kitba ta’ Ponzju Pilatu li twaħħlet mas-salib ta’ Ġesù.

Fl-isfond tal-arma hemm ukoll is-Salib ta’ Malta peress li Monsinjur Scicluna hu Kappillan Konventwali Gran Cruċ ad honorem.