The annual celebration in honour of the Annunciation of the Virgin Mary at the medieval church of Ħal Millieri (Żurrieq) will this year be held on Sunday 10th April 2016. For the occasion the chapel will be open to the public from 9.00 a.m. to 6.00 p.m. Holy Mass will be celebrated at 10.00 a.m., followed by the blessing of the adjoining churchyards. Din l-Art Ħelwa, the volunteer heritage organization which holds the chapel in trust, will be offering two guided tours of the site at 11.15 a.m. by Dr Stanley Farrugia Randon, and at 4.00 p.m. by Mr Salvator Mousu.
The church of the Annunciation at Ħal Millieri is a major landmark of Malta’s medieval past. The present edifice dates to around 1450, but archeological excavations have shown that it was built over the site of an earlier, possibly thirteenth century chapel, and a much older late-Roman rural complex. The Ħal Millieri church is best known for its medieval architectural features, and for its unique set of frescoe paintings that adorn its side walls between the springing of the arches. This anachronistic cycle of holy effigies, which is believed to have been copied from the earlier chapel, have been expertly restored through the efforts of Din l-Art Ħelwa, as fine exemplars of Maltese medieval vernacular art. The church can be reached from Imqabba Road at the Żurrieq entrance to Blue Grotto Avenue; or from Diamond Jubilee Square (Fuq il-Mentna) at the end of the Imqabba bypass.