Members of the Order of Malta make a promise to serve the poor and the sick. To do so, members give of themselves in time, talent, and treasure in many ways.
Each year, Knights, Dames, Auxiliary, and Volunteers of the Federal Association join with Associations from around to world in Lourdes, France. We bring with us our beloved Malades (the sick) and their companions and together we make pilgrimage to the Marian apparition site. Also each year, our young members and auxiliary travel to Europe to participate in a summer camp with the sick and disabled. In Bethlehem, our members visit and volunteer at the Holy Family Hospital the only hospital in the area equipped to care for premature infants and women with high risk pregnancy. Moreover, when disaster strikes around the world, our members work with our affiliate, Malteser International, to care and support our neighbors struck by tragedy.
The Federal Association has been making an annual pilgrimage to the National Shrine of Our Lady of Good help since 2015. More known now than when we began, it is the first approved Marian apparition site in the United States. Similar to Lourdes we pilgrimage together with our Special Pilgrims (those who are sick or in need of extra help). We participate in National Relief projects, including efforts in Lafayette due to flooding in 2017. Although Hurricane Katrina occurred in 2005, we only recently concluded our rebuilding efforts after over a decade. We have also helped establish numerous assisted living facilities and Medical clinics throughout our territory. One of our largest on-going projects today is our Prison Ministry program, where our members visit with those incarcerated in an effort to reconcile men, women, and children with themselves, God, the Church, and society.
Throughout the regions of Federal Association there are dozens of locally run Hospitaller programs. Our programs focus on Christ’s message from Matthew 25:35-36 “For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in, naked and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you visited Me.” Soup Kitchens, Homeless Shelters, Clothing Drives, and Prison Ministry can be found throughout our territory. We encourage you to visit our Regional Pages to see more about the many programs we have in service to our Lords the sick and the poor.
The promise made by members of the Order to serve the poor and the sick is found at its heart in the activities performed by the individual members, often times made with little or no pomp and circumstance. Members are called to be active in their church and community.