Mgr. Daniel Xerri installed as the new Archpriest of Xewkija
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The installation of Xewkija's new Archpriest Mgr. Daniel Xerri, was marked by a programme of activities held in celebration.
Mgr. Daniel Xerri made his way to the Rotunda Church in Xewkija in a processional march accompanied by the Prekursur Band of Xewkija and the Victory Band of Xaghra.
This followed by a short ceremony on the church parvis which included various speeches, including one by Xewkija Mayor Mr. Paul Azzopardi and a concelebrated Mass led by Gozo Bishop Mgr. Mario Grech.
Fr Daniel Xerri was born on 21 August 1969, received primary education in Xaghra School and secondary in the Minor Seminary of the Sacred Heart, Victoria.
In 1987 he started his training for the priesthood at the Major Seminary of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
He was ordained deacon on 10 July 1993 and a priest on 24 June 1994 by Bishop Nicholas G.. Cauchi. He continued his studies in Rome from where he obtained a doctorate in theology. He was appointed parish priest of the Sta Maria della Pace parish in the Sabina-Poggio Mirteto diocese and later of the Santa Maria Assunta parish in Corese Terra.
In 2004 Bishop Nicholas G. Cauchi called him back to Gozo and he was appointed Parish Priest of San Lawrenz.
In 2007 Bishop Mario Grech appointed him as Rector of the Major Seminary of the Heart of Jesus, an office that that he served until 2014.
Xewkija is the first village in the Gozitan countryside, outside Victoria, which became a parish, on 27 November 1678, by order of Mgr. Michael G. Molina, Bishop of Malta and Gozo.
The old church dedicated to St. John the Baptist has been built at least twice, until on the 4th of May 1952 the first stone was placed of the Rotunda we see today. The majestic building, made entirely from Maltese stone, is built on the site of the old church, and was dedicated on the 17th of June 1978.
In 1845, one hundred and seventy years ago, the Xewkija parish commissioned the statue of St. John, carved in wood by sculptor Pietro Paolo Azzopardi.
To date, during the history of the parish church, there have been nine parish priests and six Archpriests.