Qrendi parish church being restored in EU-funded project

Qrendi parish church being restored in EU-funded project

Photo: Jeremy Wonnacott (DOI)

The façades of the Parish Church of the Assumption in Qrendi is being restored through an €84,000 project which is 80% funded by the European Regional Development Fund.

The church occupies a site which once housed two small chapels next to each other, one dedicated to the Assumption and the other to St Anthony. Construction work on a new parish church began in 1620, two years after Qrendi – formerly part of Żurrieq – became a separate parish, but this church , completed in 1655, only lasted a few decades before the need for a larger church was felt.

The present church was designed by the renowned Maltese architect Lorenzo Gafà – whose works include St Paul’s Cathedral in Mdina and the Cathedral of the Assumption in Victoria. Construction works began in 1685 and were concluded in 1712, though the church was only consecrated 70 years later by Bishop Vincenzo Labini.

The restoration project was launched as the years took their toll: the church’s primary and secondary façades both suffered some deterioration. In light of this, a number of stone blocks have needed to be replaced, while various apertures have undergone extensive restoration.

And the project will also fund the creation of a heritage route in Qrendi, one which prominently features the Gafà-designed church, which will guide local and foreign and visitors to various heritage sites in the locality.

The project is one of over 30 restoration projects being undertaken by the Archdiocese of Malta’s Cultural Heritage Foundation with the help of some €4 million in EU funds.

The initiative was commended by Parliamentary Secretary for EU Funds Chris Bonett on a visit to the site.

“Malta’s churches are part of our cultural heritage,” he said. “Through this investment, our ecclesiastical cultural heritage is being conserved, protected and promoted, and we are strengthening the product we are offering to the tourists seeking to enjoy our history.”

The restoration project was also celebrated by Qrendi’s parish priest Fr Mario Said, who welcomed the beneficial use of EU funds to the benefits of locals and visitors alike.


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