Thanksgiving Mass for the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations with El Salvador
A Thanksgiving Mass to mark the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations and successful humanitarian cooperation between the Sovereign Order of Malta and the Republic of El Salvador has been celebrated yesterday in the Church of Santa Maria in Aventino in Rome.
Msrg. Jean Laffitte, Prelate of the Order of Malta, presided the Mass, at the presence of the Grand Commander, Fra’ Ruy Goncalo de Villas-Boas, the Grand Chancellor, Albrecht Boeselager and Manuel Roberto López Barrera, Ambassador of the Republic of El Salvador to the Sovereign Order of Malta and to the Holy See. Maria Emerica Cortese, Ambassador of the Order of Malta to the Republic of El Salvador also attended the celebration, together with the ambassadors or diplomatic representatives of Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Cuba, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Mexico, Panama and Peru.
“Such friendly bonds between the Republic of El Salvador and the Sovereign Order of Malta have been based on shared values of solidarity and assistance to others – said the Grand Chancellor in his speech at the end of the Mass – The many socio-medical activities run by the Association of the Order of Malta in the country are a further testimony of the collaboration and humanitarian synergies set up between the Republic of El Salvador and the Sovereign Order of Malta for the benefit of the most disadvantaged portions of population”.
Ambassador Manuel Roberto López Barrera praised the friendship and the commitment of the Order of Malta in his country: “Seven decades in which, if we could summarize in a single sentence to understand this common path, it would be ‘Thanks a lot!’ to the Sovereign Order of Malta for have given so much to El Salvador. Fortunately, we will continue to give ‘Thanks’ to the Order of Malta, because our common path does not end here and we hope to continue working arm to arm, not only for the next 70 years, but forever”.
The Order of Malta manages seven clinics throughout the Republic of El Salvador, including three laboratories and four dental surgeries. Moreover, with donation programs, it provides on a regular basis humanitarian aid supporting many social relief institutions such as national hospitals, clinics, homes for the elderly, orphanages, schools and parishes. Malteser International, the Order of Malta’s worldwide relief entity, whose extensive experience has been to assist in areas devastated by natural catastrophes, is sadly frequently present in the Central American region.
The excellent diplomatic relations will be further strengthened by the official visit on 25 October by the Foreign minister of El Salvador to the Order of Malta, Alexandra Hill Tinoco.