Luċjan Borg

  1. When were you born and where did you live? 

I was born on 26 December 1943 at Haz-Zebbug, Malta.

  1. Where did you receive your primary; secondary and post-secondary education? 

At the local primary school. My secondary education was at the St. Augustine College, at that time in Tarxien. That was in 1954 when the rector was Fr. Joseph Borg OSA. I ended my schooling by sitting for the G.C.E Oxford exams in July 1960. Around 21 September of that same year, along with two other Maltese youths, I went with Fr. Paul Spiteri OSA to Gozo where, together with Fr. Adeodato Schembri OSA, we started our novitiate under the spiritual direction of Fr. George Bezzina. From the very first day we started living the Augustinian way of life and our very first activity was an annual retreat held at the convent there. I made my first religious profession on 1st October 1961 when Fr. Ugolino Gatt OSA was the Provincial.

  1. When did you feel the call for a vocation with the Augustinians and what brought this about? 

My mother used to say that from my birth I had an Augustinian vocation! This has a historical base. My mother hailed from Valletta and, when still single, used to work with a family that lived in ‘Vincenti Buildings’ right opposite the Augustinian convent in Old Bakery street, Valletta. During the week she used to attend Mass at our Church there. There she came across Fr. Angelo Pizzuto OSA whom she chose as her confessor and spiritual director. One fine day Fr. Angelo came to our home because he had promised my mother that he would consecrate our home to the Sacred Heart of Jesus when I was born. And this is what he did in due course. Thereupon he told my mother: ‘Maria, this child is for us Augustinians.’ And my mother maintains that from that moment I started my Augustinian vocation.

I believe that it was God, my mother and Fr. Angelo who conceived my Augustinian vocation. I was never sorry that my Augustinian vocation came about that way. Today, having experienced an Augustinian way of life for sixty years, I thank God, my parents – because my father supported my mother’s contention - and Fr. Angelo who opened for me the way so that, without my being worthy of this, I have close to my heart the Augustinian charisma in which I was able to grow with the beauty of a Catholic faith - and this through the formation I received in St. Augustin’s teachings and Augustinian spirituality – I matured psychologically and I am happy that I have served, and continue to serve, God, the Church, the Augustinian order and humanity in various countries to which I was sent and in various missions with which I was entrusted by my Superiors.

  1. What do you like doing in your free time? 

As presently I find myself in our Cuba mission and I am very involved principally in teaching Theology at the Faculty of the Seminary and I am also dean of the Department of Philosophy at the Pontifical Institute of Humanity of the city of Havana, a little of my free time is devoted to cooking for my community, especially on Sundays. I also take care of the tropical plants in our convent. Often, I also spend some of my free time correcting my students’ work, taking care of the archives of the Cuban Augustinian Delegation, and accompanying persons entrusted to me for spiritual direction or otherwise preparing the liturgy for Sundays and feasts.

  1. Can you mention an interesting book you read? What was the subject matter? 

It is impossible for me to answer this question. Many were the interesting books that I have read over the years especially on theology and philosophy. More than anything I am interested in all that was written about St. Augustine. This is such a wide area that one can never end discovering new qualities with which St. Augustine was endowed. For over 40 years I have been studying St. Augustine’s writings and I must admit that I always find something new which he wrote or which others have written about him.

  1. Do you have a favourite quotation/saying? 

I will limit myself to two quotations. The first one from Socrates that says: ‘what I know is what I don’t know’. This is a famous quotation because it is the foundation of everything. In fact, anyone who thinks he knows how to stop studying and investigating goes backwards instead of forward. Whoever thinks that he knows enough, misguides himself, develops a superiority complex who is bound to ruin all his knowledge and wisdom.

The second quotation is from the first paragraph of St. Augustine’s ‘Confessions’ where St. Augustine said: ‘O God you made me for yourself and my heart will not rest until it rests in you’. In a world where man has put God aside it is as well that one remembers this as, if modern therapy is an efficient means against itself, nonetheless the strongest therapy that one needs for finding peace and to lead a serene and happy life is to fashion himself on God.

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