On Sunday, 21st May 2023, the Greek-Catholic parish in Malta will have a new deacon. The diaconal ordination of subdeacon Jesmond Schembri will take place with the blessing of Archbishop Charles Scicluna and with the laying of the hands of Mgr Manuel Nin O.S.B., Apostolic Exarch to Greece and Titular Bishop of Carcabia. The ordination Mass will be celebrated at 9.00 a.m. at the Church of St Nicholas of Myra (Tal-Erwieħ) in Valletta.
The sub-deacon Jesmond Schembri is from the Greek-Catholic Parish of Our Lady of Damascus in Valletta. Schembri is married, a father of two and a grandfather of two.
In the Byzantine rite, the act of service which characterises the deacon’s vocation is especially apparent in the very active role he takes in the celebration of the liturgy. The deacon is found both in the sanctuary assisting the bishop or priest and in the midst of the congregation leading them in their prayers to God.
The Greek-Catholic Church is part of the Catholic Church which is made up of 23 different Churches which, however, are in complete and perfect communion with each other and with the Pope of Rome. These churches have different traditions and rites. While the vast majority of Catholics embrace the Latin Rite of the Roman Catholic Church, other rites include the Byzantine one, which is the rite of the Greek-Catholic community of Malta.