PopeWatch: Knights of Malta

Wednesday, January 11, AD 2017


Troubled times for the Knights of Malta:



Letters seen by English Catholic news weekly The Tablet have revealed that Pope Francis specifically requested the Knights of Malta that no one be dismissed in a dispute that saw its third-in-command, Albrecht von Boeselager, thrown out as Grand Chancellor and then suspended from the Order.  

Boeselager was replaced by Maltese knight John Critien, who now represents the Sovereign Military Order as its foreign and home affairs minister.

Boeselager was sacked on 6 December by the Knights’ Grand Master, Matthew Festing, in the presence of the Order’s patron and prominent conservative critic of Francis, Cardinal Burke.

The reasons for Boeselager’s dismissal primarily date back to when he was Grand Hospitaller from 1989 to 2014 and in charge of Malteser International, the Knights’ large humanitarian aid agency located in 24 countries. During his tenure, the organization is documented to have distributed thousands of condoms and oral contraceptives, mainly but not exclusively to help prevent prostitutes in the Far East and Africa contracting HIV/AIDS.

The allegations were spearheaded by Michael Hichborn of the Lepanto Institute, who presented his findings to Burke in early November.

Boeselager denies the charges.

But now it has emerged that Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin wrote to Festing a few days later, clarifying that the Pope did not want Boeselager sacked.

As a result of the Knights’ decision, the Holy See decided to set up an investigation into the Knights.   


Go here to read the restFurther  evidence that in this Pontificate the prime question is not what have you done, but who you know.   

8 Responses to PopeWatch: Knights of Malta

  • I wonder if the Pope in a fit of revenge will sack Burke from the Cardinalate. After all, Burke has become champion spokesman of the Dubia and has presided over the sacking of the Grand Chancellor, and BOTH issues dealing with orthodoxy in sexual practices: the first in no adultery and the second in no contraceptives. This Pope cannot accept rigid adherence to moral regulation.
    So I want to ask him this: should I as a nuclear energy professional rigidly adhere to nuclear regulation? If yes, then why is nuclear regulation (or medical or fire protection or civil / structural or whatever) any more important to be scrupulously observed that moral regulation? Why not have mercy on poor fallible me?
    You see, folks, where this is going? Why is the body that one day becomes dust MORE important than the soul which lives forever? Jorge Bergoglio cannot think through the logical ramifications of his mercy philosophy.

  • Yep. That 1/10 letter is fierce. The Grand Master of the Knights has just told the commission to stuff it, in no uncertain terms.

    Not surprising that a fellow who gave a thumbs-up to birth control for eugenics purposes is not put out by what Boeselager did.

    We must accompany the poor, vulnerable and exploited with boxes of Trojans.

  • The Order of Malta is a sovereign entity. This is like the Vatican ordering an investigation of Andorra or Liechtenstein or San Marino – or Italy ordering an investigation of the Vatican.

  • Stuff like this wouldn’t happen if the knights were returned to defending Christians from Muslim terrorists.

    I just re-read St. Matthew’s (25: 31 – 40) “final judgment” narrative. It doesn’t see anything about giving condoms to the least of Jesus’ sisters. BTW: earlier St. Matthew (12: 48 – 50) relates how Jesus specifically identifies exactly who are his “brothers.” FYI: they ain’t prostitutes.

  • This could be a bank shot aimed at Cardinal Burke. Who knows? I doubt the Knights will pay the Pope much mind.

  • Despots eventually make themselves irrelevant. Like, Obama.
    Timothy R.

  • “The prime question is not what have you done, but who you know.” Well, Pope Gallengroup sure knew the right people on March 13, 2013.