Vicar General

The son of Giacomo Tholessanti, Antonio was born and baptised in Valletta at St Paul’s Parish Church.

When was ordained sub-deacon on 16 July 1628 he had already graduated Doctor in both Laws, and was ordained priest on 13 August. On 15 July 1629 he was assigned the Praecentorship of the Cathedral Chapter and was installed in this office two days after his ordination as a priest. In 1629 he was nominated synodal judge.

Rev Antonio Tholessanti managed to obtain several benefices. Soon after his insertion in the Cathedral Chapter, he started being involved in various commitments, in fact on 26 March 1630, the Chapter chose him to take care of all objects that were in the possession of the Treasurer Don Simeon Pace during the latter’s absence from the island, but he declined this task.  The same Chapter elected him Depositary of its finances, which office he accepted.

He was one of the co-visitors of the 1634 and 1635-1637 Pastoral Visits. On 25 March 1635 the newly elected Bishop Johannes Balaguer da Camarasa nominated him his procurator to take the possession on his behalf of the Diocese after his appointment to Malta. The Bishop also nominated him his Vicar General in a letter from Rome of 24 February 1635.

When Mgr Fabio Chigi was consecrated Bishop of Nardò at the Jesuits church in Valletta on 1 July 1635, by a special papal dispensation, Bishop Balaguer, who conducted this ceremony, had as his co-consecrators two ecclesiastics who were not Bishops, namely Fra Salvator Imbroll, Prior of the Conventual Church and Canon Tholossenti who was Malta’s Vicar General.

On 15 June 1639, Rev Antonio took the oath of office as Administrator of the Diocese in the absence of the Bishop in front of the Inquisitor. The same Chapter, on 26 July 1640 appointed him, together with the Archdeacon, to study a particular transaction: the exchange of the Isolotto at Ta’ Xbiex since the local government needed this site, but health reasons induced him to renounce this commitment.

Rev Tholossenti remained sick from 1640 to 1644, however when Bishop Balaguer had to leave the island for Rome in 1642, he left Canon Tholossenti in charge of the Diocese and was also authorized to confer ecclesiastical benefices. He was also synodal examiner and judge in 1646, while he also held the office of Pro-Inquisitor and Consulter of the Holy Office in Malta, and remained Vicar General of the Diocese till his death, which took place at Valletta on 3 October 1660.

This biography is part of the collection created by Michael Schiavone over a 30-year period. Read more about Schiavone and his initiative here.

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