Georgia Bulletin

The Newspaper of the Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta


Malta Order Hosts Feb. 12 Mass, Anointing Of Sick

By GIGI MEYERS, Special To The Bulletin | Published January 20, 2011

As a special project this year, the Order of Malta, Federal Association, will sponsor a Mass for the Anointing of the Sick at Holy Spirit Church in Atlanta on Saturday, Feb. 12, at 11 a.m.

Atlanta Auxiliary Bishop Luis R. Zarama will serve as the principal celebrant, joined by other members of the clergy. Members of the Order of Malta dedicated to their mission of serving the sick will be available at the Mass to assist anyone in need, and handicap access will be provided. Everyone is invited to attend this special event, just after the Feb. 11 feast of Our Lady of Lourdes.

The church is located at 4465 Northside Drive, N.W., at the intersection of Northside Drive and Mt. Paran Road.

The famous verse from Matthew’s Gospel, chapter 25—“Lord when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison and did not minister to you?”—illustrates the responsibility that members of the Order of Malta accept as their duty when making a commitment to join this 900-year-old religious order.

The Order of Malta was founded in 1113 under the name of St. John of Jerusalem. The mission of the order—defense of the faith, and care of the sick and poor—has never wavered during the organization’s long history. Today the order has a presence in over 55 countries worldwide and stays true to the mission through the efforts of its members including 13,000 Knights and Dames, 80,000 volunteers and 15,000 health care professionals. Members are currently serving in more than 200 hospitals and medical centers, as well as emergency relief and ambulance corps that provide aid for at least 7 million people in 120 countries.

The Atlanta-based group of the Federal Association began in 1995 and today there are over 50 members living in the metro area. Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory and Archbishop-emeritus John F. Donoghue serve as conventional chaplains of the order and Msgr. Edward J. Dillon, pastor of Holy Spirit Church, serves as magistral chaplain.

In Atlanta, the order has focused much of its recent volunteer effort on working on a variety of projects in support of the Solidarity School, a private Catholic preschool, which is operated as a part of a larger outreach to the local Latino community. These projects have included establishing a medical clinic, participating in an annual Christmas pageant and graduation ceremony, and general maintenance and beautification of the facility.