God s love Part 5.The Senglea Redeemer.
Twice a year, on the fourth Friday of Lent and on Sunday after the solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, thousands of devout Christians flock to Senglea.
The reason is that on those two occasions the miraculous effigy of Christ stumbling under the cross, locally known as Ir-Redentur, is carried shoulder high around the streets.This statue has, in fact, overcome the test of time by keeping a strong following, even in this day and age when similar traditions are dying out.
Originally commissioned by the Confraternity of the Holy Crucifix in 1742 as a statue for the Passion set, it soon grew to become one of the most cherished and beloved effigies in Malta. Within an arc of 60 years devotion had grown so much that Pope Pius VII gave permission for a feast to be held in its honor annually after the end of the Easter period. This effigy eventually became a national monument of devotion when a vow was made by the clergy and the people of Senglea in 1813 to be safeguarded from the plague that was rampant in Malta. Since then the number of ex voto donations have increased exponentially.
Psalms 126:1-6 (KJV) When the LORD turned again the captivity of Zion, we were like them that dream.
Then was our mouth filled with laughter, and our tongue with singing: then said they among the heathen, The LORD hath done great things for them.
The LORD hath done great things for us; whereof we are glad.
Turn again our captivity, O LORD, as the streams in the south.
They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.
He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.