Bolzano, Lavarone and Rovereto: these are the stopping places of Fra’ Matthew Festing’s journey of remembrance in Trentino-Alto Adige.

Those who fell in World War I and the medical treatment and aid dispensed by the Order of Malta’s members and volunteers to soldiers and civilians on all the fronts were remembered during a ceremony on 4th July. The Archbishop of Trento, Msgr. Luigi Bressan, celebrated mass in the military cemetery of Slaghenaufi, in the municipality of Lavarone, the last resting place of the 748 people who fell between 1916 and 1918 on the highlands of Folgaria, Lavarone and Luserna.


Pope Francis nominates the new Prelate of the Sovereign Order of Malta


Pope Francis has today nominated Monsignor Jean Laffitte as the new Prelate of the Sovereign Order of Malta.

Born in France, at Oloron-Sainte-Marie in 1952, Monsignor Laffitte graduated in Political Science at the University of Toulouse in 1973. He attended courses at the University of Cambridge in 1979 and the University of Salamanca in 1980, and entered the Pontifical French Seminary in Rome in 1984, reading philosophy and theology at the Pontifical Gregorian University and moral theology at the John Paul II Pontifical Institute.


A Photography Book Recounting the Order of Malta from 1880 to 1960


“Ordine di Malta-Ordre de Malte. Fotografie inedite-Photographies inedites 1880-1960” is a book in Italian and French recently brought out by the publishing house Gangemi. It contains two hundred unpublished photographs from the archives of the Grand Magistry and those of the Grand Priories and National Associations, taken between the end of the 19th and the early 20th century.


Vietnam: New Project for Treating and Rehabilitating Leprosy Patients


The project launched thanks to a generous donation from the Republic of China (Taiwan)

To step up prevention and develop rehabilitation therapies for leprosy patients in Vietnam: this is the ambitious project of Ordre de Malte France, present in Vietnam for over 40 years with leprosy treatment and prevention programmes. Thanks to a generous donation from the Republic of China (Taiwan), the project can now be launched in its entirety.


Grand Master Fra’ Matthew Festing Audience with Pope Francis


Held on the feastday of St. John the Baptist, the Sovereign Order of Malta’s patron

This morning in the Vatican City, Pope Frances received in audience the Grand Master of the Sovereign Order of Malta, Fra’ Matthew Festing.

During the meeting, the Grand Master illustrated to the Pontiff the Order’s work in assisting refugees and migrants in various parts of the world, from the Middle East to Africa. Fra’ Matthew Festing talked about the numerous projects underway to provide healthcare for displaced people fleeing from wars, violence and poverty, and also the social support projects for refugees in the countries of destination, such as France and Germany.


World Refugee Day. The Sovereign Order of Malta launches international campaign: No to the construction of walls


National Associations, rescue corps and volunteers unite to highlight the worldwide drama

The number of refugees and displaced persons worldwide has reached levels not recorded since the end of World War II. In Syria, over four years of conflict now mean that a family is forced to leave home every 60 seconds. It is calculated that every 3 seconds a person becomes displaced in some part of the world. 52 million people are in flight from disasters, wars and famine. Half of them are children. Some 17 million are refugees, over 33 million are internally displaced – that is, forced to leave their homes although staying in their country – and about 1.5 million are asylum seekers. In 2014, there were 866,000 new asylum applications in the industrialised countries – the majority were Syrians followed by Iraqis. Numbers that reflect a world in flames with burgeoning new crises and old trouble spots flaring up.


Credentials presented by Slovenia and Panama


The Grand Master of the Sovereign Order of Malta, Fra’ Matthew Festing, received in audience in the Magistral Palace for the presentation of their Letters of Credence, the new Ambassadors of:

Slovenia, H.E. Tomaž KUNSTELJ
Panama, H.E. Miroslava ROSAS VARGA

Latest interventions of the Order of Malta in the World

Refugee Crisis in South-East Asia: Rohingya flee in their thousands


Malteser International provides relief to refugees in Indonesia and Myanmar

Thousands of members of the Muslim Rohingya minority from Myanmar, as well as people fleeing from poverty in Bangladesh, have attempted to flee by sea to Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand. A great number of those have found themselves in distress at sea in dangerously overcrowded boats, often for weeks.
The Order of Malta’s worldwide relief agency, Malteser International, is on the scene: “The refugees stranded in the vicinity of our project in Banda Aceh are living in the confined space of a temporary refugee camp, sleeping on tarpaulins in overcrowded tents without enough to eat,” reports Cordula Wasser, head of Malteser International Asia team.




On 29 May, the Grand Master of the Order of Malta, Fra’ Matthew Festing, conferred the insignia of Bailiff Grand Cross of Honour and Devotion on Cardinal Peter Erdo, Archbishop of Esztergom-Budapest, Primate of Hungary, during a meeting in the Magistral Palace, Rome.
“I receive today this distinction as archbishop primate of a country which has strong links with the Order of Malta’s history, because of the people who have served in it and because of the work it has performed,” the cardinal said.


Sovereign Order of Malta organises ‘Religions Together for Humanitarian Action’ symposium in Geneva


Humanitarian aid in the light of the present international scenario: asymmetrical warfare and non-state actors

Yesterday in Geneva, representatives of four different faiths – Christianity, Islam, Judaism and Vedantism – as well as experts and diplomatic representatives, leaders of secular and faith-based humanitarian organisations met in the United Nations for the ‘Religions Together for Humanitarian Action’ symposium organised by the Sovereign Order of Malta.