- Chancellor: Fr Simon Godfrey SSC
- Chaplain: Locum ; The Reverend Ian Rutherford CMP from 2nd June
- Church Wardens: Mrs Maureen Fava 79210116 Mrs Ursula Smith 99263572
- Friends Secretary: Mrs Mary de Gruttola 99210620
Sunday: Mass 9.30 am
Sundays from time to time Family Mass for young people and children
Friday: Mass 9.30am
Open as a quiet place for prayer and contemplation from 09.00 to 17.00 each day.
We have recently celebrated the 150th anniversary of the Consecration of the building by Bishop John Walter Trower on 23rd April 1867
A Victorian Gothic stone “English Country Church”
2017 11th June
Trinity Sunday Collect
Almighty and everlasting God,
who hast given unto us thy servants grace,
by the confession of a true faith,
to acknowledge the glory of the eternal Trinity
and, in the power of the divine majesty, to worship the Unity:
we beseech thee that thou wouldest keep us steadfast in this faith
and evermore defend us from adversities;
who livest and reignest, one God, now and for ever.
HOLY TRINITY LIBRARY AND BOOK EXCHANGE
Books are available for lending and exchange from the large selection next to the church
Sundays 10.45-11.15. Mondays, Wednesdays & Fridays 10.00-12.00
If you are an Anglican worshipper and could regularly attend the 9.30 am Sunday service at Holy Trinity, would you consider joining the Choir?
Visiting choir members are most welcome to join the choir whilst in Malta. Please make yourself known to the sidespersons who will conduct you to the choir vestry where you will be given music and a robe.
Chaplain based at Holy Trinity, Sliema
Locum Chaplain Fr Ian Rutherford until May 2016
Bishop’s House, 75 Rudolphe Street, Sliema, Malta SLM1273
Telephone: 00356 27335231
Mobile phone: 7980 6114
Holy Trinity: History ~ 1866 to today…
In the middle of the 19th century, it became clear that there was a requirement for an Anglican church and vicarage to serve the needs of the growing Anglican community in Sliema. In response to an appeal for funds by the Bishop of Gibraltar, the Rt Rev Dr Walter John Trower, two well-known English merchants of the time, Mr Ingham and Mr Whitaker, each donated £100 to add to the Bishop’s promised gift of £1000.
The total estimated building cost for the Church was £4000. The Bishop therefore undertook to be responsible for the remainder, to be provided as building progressed.
On 7th April 1866, the villa known as the Bishop’s House and the adjoining land on which the church was to be built was acquired by the Bishop’s daughter, Miss Jane Trower. Her intention was to transfer the property to the Episcopal See of Gibraltar. However, under the law, an unmarried woman, in the lifetime of her father, could not make a donation of greater than £50 without his consent. Thus the Bishop became party to the Deed of Gift and also refunded to his daughter the purchase price of £1,050.
In the early years, a Sliema Church Endowment Fund was inaugurated by Bishop Trower with a sum of £100, increased in 1871 by his successor The Rev’d Charles Amyand Harris, with a gift of £2,000. The interest that this amount generated paid stipend to the incumbent Minister of £72 annually. The money generated from the offertory, after expenses had been deducted further increased this. The Chaplains residence, known since 1905 as Bishop’s House, was built in 1855. Memorials and gifts in Holy Trinity Church reflect its military and civilian connections
A Guided Tour:
The design of this Church is unusual in Malta; it was built for the English community and so reflects the shape of a village Church anywhere in the United Kingdom. The high pitched roof and simple two stage shape do focus our attention on looking up and beyond ourselves as we approach. The narrow, pointed East windows with their highly coloured roundels soar upwards in a similar vein. The delicate tracery of the chancel screen both highlights the holiness of the place but at the same time allows entrance and does not obscure what takes place at the altar.
Anglicans on Malta
British people began settling on Malta in the early 1800’s as traders, civil servants, service personnel and so on. They brought their own understanding of the faith with them and Anglican worship was conducted usually by service chaplains from the early days.
As the civilian population grew, and wives and families settled here, the need for a larger church for worship became apparent. During her stay on Malta to recuperate after an illness, the Dowager Queen Adelaide became the prime mover in arranging for St. Paul’s Cathedral Church to be built in Valletta. Despite a number of serious construction problems, that Church was eventually completed and dedicated for worship in 1844.
Almost immediately, the need for another Church building became clear. Sliema was very popular amongst British residents, and Holy Trinity was consecrated in 1867 for them.
Look at the stained glass windows near the door. Three of them fit into the style of the ‘Arts and Crafts’ movement with which William Morris was associated in Britain in the late 19th Century. Notice how very different the fourth window looks, can you work out why?
The impressive marble font stands near the door which used to be the main way into the Church. Baptism is seen as the first step on one’s Christian life, so the font is traditionally placed at the entrance to the Church. Notice here the fine Maltese cross above the font, given in memory of George Borlase and one of the earliest memorials in the Church.
Do take some time to look at the other plaques and memorials in the nave. That for Ethel Winifred Haynes is very striking; the ones related to the Eastern Telegraph Company remind us of the strategic importance of Malta and that not all people here were in the armed services. No one seems to know anything about the ‘Voluntary Workers Corner Club, Sliema,’ which erected the Second World War plaque at the back of Church; do let us know if you have any information!
The long list of names on the wooden war memorial reminds us just how dangerous and difficult life was in Malta during the war period. These names are read out every year on Remembrance Sunday lest we forget.
The newest addition inside our Church in the nave is the series of wooden carvings symbolising the way of the cross. Do take the time to look closely at some of these before you move up to the Chancel.
The tracery of the wrought iron screen marks the move from nave to chancel, as do the three steps upwards. Again the symbolism is important; as we draw closer to God we climb higher. Although the Church is very plain in many ways, the need to use concrete symbols to express spiritual ideas is stilt very clear. So the choir stalls face inwards, the choir members are not giving a concert facing the audience, but leading the worship.
The organ is here too, for in our way of worshipping music and singing is very important. We do have services which are said, but mostly we would involve everyone in singing hymns of praise.
Probably when it was built, the altar in this Church would have been against the far wall, with the priest leading the service with his back to the congregation. In that approach, the priest stands in front of the people and represents them to God. Nowadays most churches like this one think of God as in the midst of us, and therefore the priest stands on the far side of the altar facing the people where we are gathered round the table as God’s family sharing in the Eucharist.
Take time to absorb the impact of the three windows; this Church is dedicated to the Holy Trinity.
Outside the Church
Here you will find our most recent addition, or rather a renewed original.
As you go through the gates between Bishop’s House and the church and follow the signs, down the steps to the Church Hall, you will pass the old cross which can be seen is considerably weather-beaten. The small garden plots alongside the steps have been transformed over the recent years from bare earth and stones into separate gardens. These gardens have been designed, planted and maintained by individual and family members of the congregation. The last garden on the right nearest the Hall, is the Sunday School garden, hence to ornaments which surround it.
The Church today
The Anglican Chaplaincy in Malta and Gozo provides frequent services here and throughout the islands. The two chaplains respond to the needs of all who would request their help; the British community, tourists and many other nationalities. The Chaplaincy has to be self-supporting. It receives no assistance from abroad and relies on the donations it receives to cover its costs. It is part of the Diocese in Europe and the world-wide Anglican Church. It does not seek to convert from other religions, but to provide Christian pastoral care and support.
Brass eagle in 1891.
Font in 1898.
Chancel screen in 1891.
Organ chamber in 1934.
Oak panelling in the nave in 1915.
Pastoral Staff in 1921
Henry Joseph Corbett Knight, the 6th Bishop of Gibraltar, Fellow of the College of Corpus Christi and the Blessed Virgin Mary of Cambridge received a gift of a Pastoral Staff from the Master, Fellows and Friends in Our Lord on the Festival of St James in the year of our Salvation 1911. Subsequently, in 1921 Bishop Knight bequeathed the Staff to Holy Trinity Church, Sliema, Malta.
Those who died defending Malta during the Second World War are commemorated in a number of ways. The St George window in the northwest corner of the nave is dedicated to the memory of the worshippers in this Church, members of HM Forces and Civilians who lost their lives through enemy action 1939 – 1945. On the west wall is a brass plate in memory of those who were lost, and to the right of the Chancel steps is a memorial to the men who served and fell defending the Island in the 10th Heavy Anti-Aircraft Regiment, Royal Artillery. A detailed guidebook of Holy Trinity by Alan Keighley is available from the Friends of Holy Trinity.