Archbishop Charles Scicluna told the members of the Armed Forces of Malta (AFM) that they are Malta’s guardian angels, there to protect and to serve. The Archbishop was celebrating Mass at Saint John’s Co-Cathedral in Valletta on the day dedicated to Malta’s Armed Forces.
Mgr. Scicluna said that the armed forces fulfil a role which is similar to that fulfilled by guardian angels. Angles are assigned to protect and guide an individual or group while the army is there to serve the country. He praised and blessed the AFM for their humanitarian service given whenever there is a need for a rescue operation.
He added that similarly Jesus used to aid and heal people of diverse beliefs, irrelevant if they were pagans or Jewish.
A great soldier can still believe in Jesus
The Archbishop explained that a soldier does not need to throw away his faith when he or she is at the barracks. Mgr. Scicluna stated that a soldier who is efficient at work can still believe in Jesus.
Mgr. Scicluna narrated the parable written in the Gospel according to Matthew, which saw a centurion, a commander of a Roman army, travelling to the city of Capernaum to ask Jesus to heal one of his servants.
The centurion was well aware of the different authority levels, stated the Archbishop. However, this did not prevent him to seek help for his servant. He still felt responsible for his safety.
The Archbishop stated that similarly, members of the army should feel responsible for the Maltese and Gozitan citizens who depend on them for their safety.
We need to be the shield
Mgr. Scicluna also emphasised that they should also treat each other with respect. He expressed that “simply because I am above you does not mean I can treat you badly”. He concluded that “we need to be the shield” that is needed, to create a better life for others and those around us.