Holy Family Hospital - Honoring Mothers

It was announced earlier this month that Katherine Griffin Hand has been named Executive Director of the Holy Family Hospital of Bethlehem Foundation. Katherine has been charged with expanding the audience for this critical vocation and ensuring that the mothers and babies at Holy Family receive only the best care. Holy Family Hospital plays a vital role in providing essential care and support for mothers and babies throughout the Holy Land in this state-of-the-art facility. Just 500 yards from the place where Mary became a mother, Holy Family Hospital is ensuring that thousands of women each year have the chance to safely bring a precious life into this world. Amidst all of the tension in the region, Holy Family Hospital is an instrument of peace as Muslims and Christians are treated side by side, connecting over the happiness only a new baby can bring.

Over the course of your life, think how many candles were lit, and prayers recited, for you by your Mother, Godmother, and all of the women who have loved and cared for you over the decades. At Holy Family Hospital each newborn and mother, in our Catholic tradition, is treated as a gift from God. As Mother Theresa said, “Love others as God loves you. Remember, works of love are works of peace.”

Memorial Mass for the Military

All Members of the Order of Malta are invited to participate in the annual Memorial Mass for the Military on Sunday, May 18 at 4:30 p.m. at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, DC. Federal Association Conventual Chaplain, Archbishop Timothy Broglio (Archdiocese for U.S. Military Services) will be the principal celebrant. There will be a reception after Mass in the Pryzbyla Center at Catholic University (walking distance from Shrine).

Members of the Order will be led to their seats and should arrive in the lower level of the Shrine by 3:45 for robing and instructions.

May 15, 2014

Lourdes Pilgrimage 2014

Last week the Federal Association sent its largest pilgrimage group ever – 367 people from all over the country – to the Marian shrine at Lourdes, France. Despite some scheduling and technical difficulties beyond our control at the outset, our stay in Lourdes was filled with good weather, beautiful Masses and processions, and a tremendous spirit of compassion and camaraderie. Our Conventual Chaplain, Archbishop Timothy Broglio (Archdiocese of U.S. Military Services) joined our group for a few days and was the celebrant at the Grotto Mass on Saturday morning. Please click here to view some of the 700 photos taken by Peter Scudner, KM, our very talented and tireless photographer. You may also visit the Association’s Facebook page to see more photos and comments from the pilgrimage.

Order of Malta Volunteers in Rome to Assist with Canonization Ceremonies

On the weekend of April 26 – 27, over four million pilgrims traveled to Rome to be a part of the historic Canonization of Pope John XXIII and Pope John Paul II. Over 400 Order of Malta volunteers were deployed for emergency medical services throughout the city.

“Once again the first-aid station has performed its ‘hospitaller’ and hospitaility mission, taking care of both the health and well-being of pilgrims, often tired and troubled after their journey and long hours of waiting,” said the medical director of the Order of Malta’s facility, Pier Paolo Visentin, stressing the dual function of the Order’s mission in offering medical assistance together with psychological and spiritual support.

“In addition, the Order of Malta’s Italian Relief Corps was responsible for the areas around St. Peter’s Square with 300 volunteers mobilized. On the crowded Via della Conciliazione leading up to the square there is an advanced medical facility with all the equipment necessary for a rapid first-aid service. The volunteers carried out hundreds of emergency interventions, also during the night of Saturday 26, with the invaluable support of 17 volunteers from the Order of Malta’s Polish Association Relief Corps, who came to Rome especially for the event. On Saturday the Grand Master, accompanied by Cardinal Paolo Sardi, visited the medical facility run by the Order of Malta’s Italian Relief Corps.”

A Haitian Welcome

For the past twenty-five years the Order of Malta has supported Hopital Sacre Coeur in Milot, Haiti with financial and volunteer support. Dozens of Order of Malta doctors, nurses, and other volunteers have traveled to and worked in at the hospital in Haiti.

In early May, under the leadership of Dr. Joe Giere, KM, two doctors and three nurses from Hopital Sacre Coeur paid a visit to the Washington area. They visited Georgetown and Providence Hospitals studying best care practices for the treatment of maternal and new-born illnesses. Haiti has the worst statistics in the Western Hemisphere for newborn and maternal mortality, and the hospital has a Neonatal Intensive Care Nursery (NICU) with 1300 deliveries a year and most classified "high risk".

On the group’s last night in the Washington, DC area, a Mass and dinner was hosted by Our Lady of Mercy Church in their honor. Father John Dakes, the pastor of Our Lady of Mercy, celebrated the Mass. A group of about 40 Knights and Dames of Malta, many of the doctors and nurses that have volunteered on medical trips to Haiti, attended the dinner.

Des Moines Hospitaller Recognized

Tom Moreland, KM, the Regional Hospitaller for Des Moines was recently recognized in the National Catholic Register in an article titled “You Cared for Me”.

The article features four organizations that provide lessons on practicing the Corporal Works of Mercy in the 21st century. Moreland’s work with Saint Jude Hospice, which provides fully Catholic hospices in five states, started when he was a first grader and a child volunteer at Mercy Hospital in Iowa City, IA.

In college, Moreland spent two summers volunteering at Blessed Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity AIDS hospice in San Francisco. By doing so, he learned his vocation in life was to serve the sick and dying. By 2010, Moreland said he heard God’s call to establish a hospice faithful to Catholic teachings, ethics and practice. ‘We specifically see Jesus Christ in the dying,’ Moreland explained. ‘ That was specifically taught to me by the Missionaries of Charity in San Francisco. We’re taking care of Jesus Christ, and, hopefully, we can be Jesus to them. As Mother Teresa would say: ‘Let them not see us — but see Jesus.’

The 187 hospice workers and 200-plus volunteers do so through nursing care, visits, bathing, grooming and social services, as well as music and respiratory therapy…. Archbishops Joseph Naumann of Kansas City, Kan., and Jerome Listecki of Milwaukee, as well as others, endorse this work because Saint Jude Hospice’s mission for care is very clear.

Moreland explained the approach:
1) See Jesus in the dying; this care brings them the dignity and love they deserve;
2) Participate in the New Evangelization by showing people how to live the Gospel; and
3) Show that good hospice care is a way to battle the movement to euthanasia by loving people and showing them they have hope.
Workers and volunteers demonstrate this mission as they treat 300 people daily. Several religious congregations work directly with the dying and their families, including praying for them if the sisters are cloistered.

"’We understand redemptive suffering,’ said Moreland. ‘And we explain to them redemptive suffering…Although there may not be a cure, there can always be healing,’ Moreland emphasized. He noted how praying the Hail Mary brings lots of comfort to the people in their care.

Moreland sees his participation in the corporal works of mercy — which equally applies to the other two organizations profiled here — as part of his call to answer Jesus’ command: "Love one another as I have loved you" (John 13:34).”

Federal Association Calendar

Please click the calendar for a complete listing of all national and regional activities.