Maltese Association

Order of Malta


Training and Induction Seminar – Refectory of Martha’s Kitchen

October 28 2023 

A most important training and induction seminar for members and volunteers of the Maltese Association who enrolled for service as volunteers in the “Refettorju tal-Kcina ta’ Marta” (Refectory of Martha’s Kitchen), as the Balzan soup kitchen to be run by LOOP Djakonija Parrocci is to be named, was held at the Jesuit Retreat House of Mount St. Joseph in the morning of Saturday 28th October 2023.

31 participants gathered in the lobby from 0845 – 0915 for registration and a welcome coffee. The gathering then proceeded to the conference hall, where the seminar kicked off with an introduction about LOOP illustrated by Mr. Albert Debono.

The Rev. Fr. Anton D’Amato, Director of the Migrants Commission, then explained the whole concept behind the soup kitchen, which is scheduled to be opened during the first week of December, on Monday and Friday evenings, catering for 45 covers. He stressed that the name “Refectory”, rather than “Soup Kitchen”, had been purposely selected to avoid any possible stigma arising to those who come to make use of the facility.  A very relevant talk on the Code of Conduct for Volunteers by Mr. Mario Gerada then ensued.


After a brief coffee break, during which time the participants had the opportunity of carrying on the discussion on an informal basis, the seminar resumed with very topical presentations on Communication Skills and Dos and Don’ts, which were both delivered by Mr. Jesmond Schembri.



The whole session was quite an interactive and engaging one, from start to finish, with various pertinent questions for discussion raised throughout by many of the participants.

The session was finally concluded with a brief address by the Hospitaller Dr. Kevin Dingli, who thanked all participants for having enrolled for this service, and for having taken time to attend the seminar. He highlighted the long standing close cooperation between the Association and the Emigrants Commission, and also thanked Fr. Anton D’Amato and all the speakers for their deliveries. He concluded by emphasising the essential hospitaller nature of the Order, remarking that the carrying out of such works is what the Order is all about.



Cardinal John Henry Newman’s “Fragrance Prayer”, prayed often by Saint Teresa of Calcutta and most apt for those rendering volunteer service, was then recited by Fr. D’Amato prior to the dismissal. 





'Casa Lanfreducci’ - 2, Pjazza Jean de Valette, Valletta VLT 1104, Malta