The visit of the Order of Malta’s Grand Hospitaller Fra’ Alessandro de Franciscis to Spain from Saturday 13th to Wednesday 17th was filled with humanitarian and institutional events.
The first stop was in the capital Madrid, to see first-hand the Spanish Association and volunteer corps’ many activities, including the San Juan Bautista soup kitchen, where up to 500 meals are served daily. A social centre has been operating since 2017 not far from the kitchen, with an out-patient clinic run by volunteer doctors, which also distributes clothes, legal advice and psychological support to the most vulnerable.
On Sunday, in the parish of Nuestra Senora de las Delicias, the Grand Hospitaller served breakfast to the homeless, and the next day he went to Seville to visit the San Juan de Acre soup kitchen and the Nostra Senora de Filermo social centre.
The meeting with the representatives of the Spanish Association, its delegates and leaders of the volunteer corps (Fundacion Hospitalaria) was particularly productive and rich with ideas.
The same evening, the Grand Hospitaller participated in the night service for the homeless, offering meals and hot drinks and chatting with some of them.
The last stop was at Aldea del Fresno, outside Madrid, to visit the Order’s San Juan Bautista retirement home, which with its 75 places offers care and treatment to its guests.