Oil Dedicated to St George Preca B
St George Preca (in Maltese: Ġorġ Preca) (12 February 1880 – 26 July 1962) a Maltese Catholic priest. Founder of the Society of Christian Doctrine as well as a Third Order Carmelite. Known as “Dun Ġorġ” in Maltese and Pope John Paul II dubbed him “Malta’s second father in faith”.
He assumed the religious name of “Franco” after becoming a Secular Carmelite. A popular figure among some groups, and his pastoral care and religious teaching earned recognition. However, his activities raised suspicions of heresy from senior clergy.
He ordered to close down his teaching centres for a time while they could be investigated. They subsequently re-opened. His activism earned him praise and in 1952, Pope Pius XII nominated him as a Papal Privy Chamberlain and awarded the rank of Monsignor.
In 1957 he composed five new mysteries for the Rosary for his followers which he had referred to as the “Mysteries of Light”. He canonized as a saint by the Catholic Church in 2007.
George Preca born in Valletta on 12 February 1880 as the seventh of nine children of Vincent and Nathalie Ceravolo Preca. His father both a merchant and a health inspector. He received his baptism on 17 February 1880 in the Church of Our Lady of Porto Salvo. Preca a frail child due to a range of illnesses he had and in 1885 almost drowned in the harbour though boatmen rescued him.
In 1886, the family relocated to Ħamrun. He received both his First Communion at some stage in his childhood and then his Confirmation on 2 August 1888 in the Parish Church of St. Cajetan, Ħamrun.
In 1897, while walking along with the Maglio Gardens in Floriana, Ġorġ Preca met one of his professors. Father Ercole Mompalao, who encouraged his religious vocation. Preca first studied at the state-owned school on the island before he commenced his studies for the priesthood.
He had studied Latin and English but also studied Italian and received a prize in handwriting. Shortly before his ordination, Preca diagnosed with acute pulmonary tuberculosis and given a poor prognosis. He attributed his recovery to the intercession of Saint Joseph, patron of the dying, however, the illness left him with a damaged left lung.