In a moving gesture of faith and solidarity, eight members of the Charlotte Region visited Holy Angels residential facility in Belmont, North Carolina last month to bless both the residents and staff with holy water. The profound spiritual experience left an indelible mark on the hearts of everyone present, underscoring the special bond shared between Holy Angels and the Order of Malta.
Holy Angels provides specialized round-the-clock care for children and adults with intellectual developmental disabilities and delicate medical conditions. During their visit and tour, members of the Order not only witnessed the exceptional care provided to the residents but also actively participated in the blessings. The highlight of their visit was the sacred act of blessing many of the residents with water from the Shrine of Our Lady of Lourdes, a gesture that brought comfort and spiritual solace.
Abbot Placid Solari, chancellor of Belmont Abbey, expressed his awe at the spiritual atmosphere and the residents' resilience. "It’s a blessing to see the continuous expansion and how these residents are flourishing; that’s a sign of support it’s getting from the larger community. There is something so special about Holy Angels."
Rick Menze, the Charlotte Region hospitaller, spoke passionately about the significance of this spiritual connection. "Every trip to Holy Angels is special. The residents being blessed with holy water by dames and knights is another mercy moment, a deeply meaningful experience and reflective of the special relationship our organizations share.”
The visiting knights and dames also looked at specifically designed Arjo recliner chairs that provide comfort and medical support to the residents; these were purchased by Holy Angels with a grant award from the Federal Association. The members witnessed residents sitting peacefully and happily in the chairs.
“It’s another mercy moment to see the residents using the new chairs that were a result of a previous Order of Malta grant. One more way that Holy Angels figures out a way, whether it’s a Malta grant, or support from the community, … to address a major need,” Rick Menze said, referring to the $25,000 grant.
"The beauty in a grant is in the receiver. Holy Angels deserves this grant. The blessings we share today are a testament to the love and support that surrounds this place."
Kerri Massey, president and CEO of Holy Angels, shared her deep gratitude for the blessings bestowed. "To witness the residents being blessed with holy water is a poignant reminder of the spiritual support that accompanies our mission. Our relationship with the Order of Malta is incredibly special, and these blessings signify the depth of compassion and care that our residents receive. We can’t thank the Order of Malta enough for their financial support, blessing and prayers."
Abbot Placid Solari reiterated his hope that more people would recognize the invaluable contribution of Holy Angels to the community. "I hope people realize that Holy Angels is a jewel in this community for the exceptional care it provides the residents. I give credit to the Sisters of Mercy because of the good work they started and continue to sponsor."
The visit from the Charlotte Region, marked by the touching blessings with holy water and recent grant, reaffirm the vital role that Holy Angels plays in the lives of its residents and the broader community. Their unwavering spiritual and financial support enables Holy Angels to create a nurturing and spiritually enriching environment, where residents not only live but thrive in body, mind, and spirit.