More than 10,800 carnations of various colours were transformed into a large flower carpet that decorated the parish square in Għarb on Sunday, to mark the occasion of Corpus Christi.

The use of flowers for Corpus Christi is a tradition that dates back to the 12th century but then, the use and format were different.

In many countries, adults and children receiving their first Holy Communion used to throw the flowers that formed a carpet for the procession of the sacrament. 

The actual infiorata originated in the Vatican Basilica and spread to the Catholic world for the Eucharistic feast.

Photo: David Apap AgiusPhoto: David Apap Agius

In Għarb, the custom dates back to 2003 after the village council twinned with Gerano in Italy.

The mayor, David Apap, wanted to surprise residents of Gerano who were in Għarb for the signing of a friendship pact and an infiorata was designed by artists Mario and Reuben Camilleri Cauchi, who continued to design the bloom for several years.

Besides flowers, Għarb’s infiorata also includes seeds, salt and coloured shavings.

Over the last few years, the infiorata has been designed by artist Michael Bajada, who forms part of the local committee. 

Għarb creates a coloured salt infiorata on Palm Sunday and one with flowers and coloured sawdust on Corpus Christi. It also creates one with rose petals on the occasion of the village feast.

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