Listen: “I could sense sadness in their eyes”

Qormi couple, Charles and Rose Saliba, last year extended their invitation to the family Christmas lunch to a refugee couple who are living in Malta. Charles spoke to about the initiative from which brought joy to both families.

Charles started off by explaining that the Christmas meal within their family is extended to all members of the family which would tally up to some 25 people. However last year, the family decided to share their Christmas meal with a refugee family and reached out to Mgr Alfred Vella from Malta’s Emigrants’ Commission, who put them in touch with the family. The family accepted their invitation and joined the Saliba’s Christmas lunch. He explained that the reason behind their invitation was the wish to share Christmas joy with another family who might not have relatives here and with whom to celebrate during this time of the year.

They felt really happy”

Charles explained that for him it was quite heartbreaking to hear the husband admitting that he had not seen his family in ten years. However the guests were happy to share Christmas lunch with the Salibas. Charles continued to explain that one could sense a sadness in their eyes, stemming from the fact that during this time of the year they found themselves apart.

Mundane things such as work were also discussed between the two families.

It was a beautiful experience”

Charles told that they were really happy that the refugee family had accepted their invitation and came over to share lunch with them. Describing the whole experience as “beautiful”. 

What can one do?

When asked how one may invite over refugees or people suffering from loneliness over for dinner or lunch, Charles said that one could always contact Fr Alfred Vella who had initially placed him in touch with the family. Another option would be to contact the village archpriest who could guide them.