Savona, Anthony (10.10.1911-7.6.1989)
Savona was born in Valletta and educated at the Lyceum. He joined the civil service after a brilliant pass but soon felt called to enter religious life and joined the Society of Jesus at Bagheria (Palermo) in 1931. After a course in philosophy, he read mathematics and physics at the University of Palermo and theology at Chieri (Turin). He was ordained priest in 1942.
In 1945 he was posted to St Aloysius' College, Birkirkara where he was spiritual director and teacher of mathematics and physics. He was also the treasurer and promoter of the Jesuit rrissions (1945-61). Appointed rector of the college, one of his achievements was to acquire playing fields for the college. He was also provincial of the Maltese Jesuit vice-province, as it was then known (1953-59). At his request he was sent to the missions as superior of the Santal region (1961-67). He was the treasurer of the Santal mission and of the diocese of Dumka (1962-89). In the absence of the bishop of Dumka, he was made administrator of the diocese (1985-86).
During his term in India, Savona encouraged local vocations, set up the mission and the diocese on a firm financial basis, started a savings scheme for the uplift of the people, and opened a monastery of Poor Clare sisters.
Savona was a man of deep spirituality yet he remained in touch with the everyday world by his love for the poor and by his keen interest in the progress of science.
Source: Maltese Biographies of the Twentieth Century (1997), editors Michael J. Schiavone and Louis J. Scerri