On Thursday, October 13th, members of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta in several American cities welcomed members of the Most Venerable Order of St. John of Jerusalem to a service of Vespers for the Feast of Blessed Gerard.
In St. Louis, the service was celebrated by Msgr. Vernon Gardin, ChM, at the Imacolata Catholic Church, with music under the direction of Benton Blassingame, Associate Director of Music at the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis. It was followed by a reception at the Saint Louis Club.
Members of both orders were moved by the service and enjoyed the fellowship that followed it. Members of the SMOM and the OStJ are discussing joint service projects in St. Louis, and many hoped that a joint vespers or evensong would become a regular event. This year’s event was coordinated by Prof. Brian Abel Ragen, who is a Knight of both orders.