Fra’ John Dunlap’s first engagement is a Mass with the patients
A Mass in the marquee of the Saint John the Baptist Hospital in Rome was the first official engagement of the new Lieutenant of the Grand Master, Fra’ John T. Dunlap, who yesterday afternoon visited the hospital run by the Order of Malta’s Italian Association.
The Mass was celebrated by Cardinal Silvano Maria Tomasi, Pope Francis’ Special Delegate to the Order of Malta, in the presence of the Grand Commander, Fra’ Ruy Gonçalo do Valle Peixoto de Villas-Boas, the Grand Hospitaller, Dominique de La Rochefoucauld-Montbel, members of the Sovereign Council, the heads of the Grand Priory of Rome and the Grand Priory of Naples and Sicily, as well as the Order of Malta’s Italian Association.
The Lieutenant of the Grand Master thanked the President of the Italian Association, Riccardo Paternò di Montecupo, the managers and hospital staff for their daily assistance to the sick. Afterwards, Fra’ John T. Dunlap met the doctors, nurses and the many patients participating in the celebration in honour of Saint John the Baptist, the Order of Malta’s patron.
Specializing in neuromotor rehabilitation, the Saint John the Baptist Hospital, in the Roman Magliana district, celebrated its fiftieth anniversary this year. Over the last two years it has focussed its efforts on the pandemic emergency, in terms of both prevention and vaccination. It has also launched an innovative hippotherapy programme for post-Covid convalescence – the only facility in Rome to do so – with great neurological and psychological benefits: in 2021 some 800 patients benefited from this therapy and they already number 450 this year.
Again in the afternoon, Fra’ John T. Dunlap visited the Ostia Lido Veterinary Clinic which offers free examinations for stray animals, a project the Order of Malta initiated some years ago in cooperation with the Pontifical Charity. Accompanying the Lieutenant were Dominique de La Rochefoucauld-Montbel, Grand Hospitaller and Prof. Domenico Arduini, in charge of the project.