St. George Preca (1889-1962)
Priest, Third Order Carmelite
Feast Day – May 9th
Born February 12, 1880 in Valletta on the Island of Malta. He was the seventh child in a middle-class family of nine. His childhood was normal. Feeling called to the priesthood, George moved to the Seminary. While in seminary, a severe respiratory ailment nearly killed him, but he recovered through the intercession of St. Joseph. He was ordained on December 22, 1906 and on July 21, 1918, George joined the Carmelite Third Order in the Carmelite Priory at Santa Venera. He was professed as a Third Order member on September 26, 1919 assuming the name Franco after Blessed Franco of Siena. In 1952, the Prior General of the Carmelite Order Fr. Killian Lynch affiliated him to the order in recognition of his untiring efforts to spread devotion to Our Lady of Mount Carmel.
In 1957 George Preca wrote the Luminous Mysteries of the Rosary, declared as an official meditation of the Rosary by Pope John Paul II years later. Due to failing health, he retired to his housekeeper’s home in santa Venera where he died one year to the day later on July 26, 1962. He was declared ‘venerable’ on June 28, 1999; and was canonized in Rome on June 3, 2007 by Pope Benedict XVI. St. George Preca is the first Maltese Catholic Saint.
Last content update 05/03/09