I find it hard to believe that 12 months have passed and Christmas is fast approaching.

Love, Peace, Joy, Hope … so many beautiful words are woven through our Christmas songs, prayers and family traditions. As we celebrate this Christmas season I hope that its spirit is with you all today and will linger throughout the coming year. Now we can all look forward to this nicest time of the year and take a well-deserved break from the hectic activities that have been presented to you members of ALPS in 2008

Looking back to the past year, I believe that we have all touched the dawn of new events as we went from month to month. There were so many activities organised during this year; I feel that they all went well and were to your liking. Now it is time to reflect and give thanks to you members and friends of ALPS for the constant participation and the tremendous support that you shower on us by appreciating and expressing your thanks for our efforts.

Let us now remember that Christmas is about the redemption of Man made possible through the wonderful and miraculous birth of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. This year, let us make a real and purposeful effort at Christmas to embrace a new spirit of community and inner peace within our individual families.

I would like to extend to you, your families and loved ones, my wishes for a very Happy and Peaceful Christmas. As we now head towards 2009 I am very optimistic that the positive achievements of this year may continue to improve. We must strive to make our Association even stronger in the coming year when we celebrate the 15th anniversary of its foundation. Take good care of yourselves and be good to one another …

God Bless you all, dear colleagues and friends in ALPS

Very sincerely

George dei Conti Stagno Navarra

President, ALPS


The Association of Lyceum Past Students has its members at heart. With this in mind it tries its best to present them with social and cultural activities that may be to their liking. Looking back on past performance, there is no doubt that many a time the Association has achieved what it aimed for, to its members’ benefit.

To further show appreciation for membership in ALPS, the Council of Administration has made an arrangement with Bank of Valletta plc wherein special benefits are being offered to all members of the Association.

Attached to this edition of ALPS News is a copy of the exclusive benefits which are being made available exclusively to ALPS members. Any member applying for a BOV Visa Flypass credit card will have the name “Assoc. Lyceum Past Students” embossed thereon, thus making us all proud that ALPS is always in the forefront in acquiring the best terms and benefits for its members.

Among other benefits, the BOV scheme also includes other financial products, such as unsecured personal loans, lump sum investment schemes and monthly investment plans, to mention just a few. It is appreciated, of course, that banking is a very personal matter. For this reason, ALPS members are hereby being encouraged to complete and return the attached coupon directly to Bank of Valletta expressing their interest in the scheme.


The ALPS Yuletide Dinner at the SAS Radisson Bay Point Resort, on Thursday 11th December, was a wonderfully successful event, thanks to the 310 members, friends and spouses who filled the Central Ballroom. The hotel management made sure that the place looked exceptionally nice with the table set-up and the service was excellent, as was the food. Indeed, this is one of the hotels that never fail to make us proud whenever ALPS organises some event there. This was borne out by the very favourable comments received from a good number of dinner guests.

Welcoming the guests to the event, ALPS President George dei Conti Stagno Navarra said the Association always took pride in helping to promote and strengthen wider friendship among its members and friends, more so at the special time of Christmas.

George dwelt on the various social and cultural activities that the Council of Administration had organised during 2008 (with which members and friends have been kept updated through ALPS News). He said the activities were invariably well attended and gave the Association renewed courage to drum up more events and face all the challenges inherent therein. Some special words of praise and thanks went to the ALPS Choir, which had started out in January and had grown from strength to strength in a number of activities, thanks to the dedication of all members and the dynamo behind it all, Joe Fenech.

Next year, 2009, would mark the 15th anniversary of the foundation of ALPS, and an organising committee was working on a special programme of activities that would be spread throughout the year. More details and updates would be forthcoming in ALPS News, and the Council of Administration was looking forward to solid attendance for all activities. The same hope held good for the annual general meeting to be held in January. It was important that as many members as possible attended the meeting, especially for the election of new blood to the council to guarantee continuity.

With the help of all members of the Council of Administration and their wives, whom George also thanked for their efforts, the Association was looking forward to surpassing the four-digit number of 1,000 in membership of ALPS.

The Yuletide Dinner was also marked by the availability of 26 beautiful hampers, artistically prepared by Madeleine Stagno Navarra and Therese Calleja, for raffle. Also included were Sunday lunches at the Radisson Baypoint Resort, weekend breaks at the Mediterranea and Diplomat hotels and Cadbury Chocolate packs donated by Paolo Bonnici Ltd. The raffle was made even more successful through the sales efforts of council members and wives.

The playing of David Vella on his synthesiser was enjoyed by all, and brought several couples out onto the dance floor. The event broke up well after midnight.


The ALPS Choir has decided to mark its first Christmas with a tour of old people’s homes to sing Christmas carols to the residents. As this edition of ALPS News was going to print, visits had already been made to Dar Sagra Familja in Naxxar, Casa Leone in St Julian’s and the Little Sisters of the Poor in Hamrun. Other appointments are for Casa Arkati at Mosta and Casa Antonia at Balzan.

Both the thought and the singing have invariably been very well received, by homes management and residents alike. On their part, the members of the choir were happy and proud to be sharing their God-given talents with those who had done so much for the country in their younger days.


As part of its annual efforts to help the proceeds of the Lyceum Bicycle Marathon in aid of Id-Dar tal-Providenza, the ALPS Council of Administration is organising a Leisure Weekend at the Paradise Bay Resort Hotel from the 13th to 15th February.

The venue has been chosen in deference to the expressed wishes of scores of ALPS members and friends, who always enjoy these weekends in the delightfully-fresh air at Cirkewwa. On the other hand, the dates have been chosen to include Valentine’s Day, which next year will be falling on a Saturday (see menu attached).

The flyer at the back of this edition of ALPS News shows all the options available for the weekend, including overnights and half-board accommodation. It is important that readers indicate their plans as early as possible in order to make sure of availability of beds, because the hotel has another large group booked for the same weekend. It is just as important that all applications are accompanied by complete pre-payment.


The Annual General Meeting of the Association of Lyceum Past Students will be held at 6.30 p.m. on Friday 30th January, 2009, at The Lyceum in Hamrun, with the kind cooperation of the Headmaster. There will be the annual and financial reports, matters arising, a speech from the President, a discussion on the statute and the election of the Council of Administration, including the Secretary-General. Nominations for election are to be sent in to Secretary-General Alex Borg at “Alson”, Naxxar Road, San Gwann, SGN 9032.

This item in ALPS News is to be taken as a circular.


The customary Mass for the repose of the souls of dearly departed ALPS members, Lyceum masters and students, and relatives of the Pwales community was held on 15th November at the St Anne Chapel in Pwales and was well attended.

On Sunday 7th December Council members and a number of friends attended a Mass at the Church of Divine Mercy at San Pawl tat-Tarġa to commemorate the fourth anniversary of the demise of ALPS Founder-President Guido Saliba. The occasion was taken to inaugurate a new organ donated to the church by Dr Saliba’s widow Irene.


While the Association of Lyceum Past Students is still desperately in need of more advertising to cover the costs of producing the next edition of The Chanticleer, ALPS News is urging more members to put on their thinking caps and contribute some article to help make it a bumper issue (after all the waiting time, we owe it to ourselves!). We would particularly like to hear from overseas members of ALPS, notably in Australia, Canada and the UK. The articles do not have to be only about the good old Lyceum days: they could cover the joys of meeting old schoolmates in organised or unexpected occasions, some amusing anecdotes and even current affairs in Malta and beyond. After all, The Lyceum has produced most of the Maltese Islands’ greatest minds.

There have been many times when ALPS members rose to the occasion and showed their generosity with those most in need. This is a time when members can show how dearly they hold the Association of Lyceum Past Students, through their own or their acquaintances’ advertising. Thank you all.


While guests were making their way to the hotel car park after the Yuletide Dinner, ALPS Choir member Miriam Abela fell a height of about a metre, badly hurting herself. An ambulance was called to convey her to hospital, where it was found that she had a broken arm. We all sympathise with Miriam and wish her a speedy recovery.

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