The Church of St Cecilia on the island of Gozo is the title of a book by David Mallia, which has been published to coincide with the recent reopening of the newly restored medieval chapel dedicated to the saint in the limits of Għajnsielem.
As Joe Azzopardi states in his review of this book (Vigilo-April/2012),
“Dr Mallia starts off by looking at the Church of St Cecilia from a distance – both physical and historical. He traces out the context of the church in both of these aspects trying to establish its origins, the factors that brought it into being, its life as a place of worship
until the definite deconsecration in the mid-17th century (when it was supplanted by Xewkija parish church), and the various uses to which it was put before the long abandonment which almost brought about its destruction……….
Next comes a detailed dissection of the various component parts of the building, with sections dedicated to the plan, the walls, the arches, the roof, the altar, the doorways and the parvis……..
While much of the strength of this publication is based on Dr Mallia’s in-depth knowledge, much of its appeal comes from the intelligent layout and magnificent photographs – both by Daniel Cilia. These two aspects come together in the section dedicated to the many graffiti found in the church, which are meticulously mapped, graphically illustrated through drawings and vividly presented in a series of photographs cross-referenced to the drawings.
This publication is certainly visually enjoyable and stimulating…….”