About the Order The Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of Saint John of Jerusalem of Rhodes and Malta is one of the oldest institutions of Western and Christian civilization. The 13,500 Knights and Dames remain true to its inspiring principles – nurturing, witnessing and protecting the faith and serving the poor and the sick.
The American Association Founded in 1927 as the first association of the Order of Malta in the Americas, the association is headquartered in New York City with over 2,000 Knights, Dames and volunteers in over 30 Areas working with the poor, sick, and incarcerated and giving witness to the Catholic faith.
Spirituality Knights and Dames join the Order of Malta to pursue their spiritual growth over a path laid out by Blessed Gerard more than nine hundred years ago, seeking to nurture and witness the Faith and assist the sick and the poor.
Spirituality in Action Members are involved in hands-on work at over 100 hundred organizations, including food banks, hospitals, pregnancy support centers, homeless shelters and mentoring programs for at risk children.
As we serve the incarcerated, those released and their families, we are reminded of the comments of Pope Francis. In speaking with prisoners he hoped an inmate’s time in prison would not be “time lost or as a temporary punishment but as a further occasion for genuine growth in order to find peace of heart and the strength to be reborn, a return to living the hope in the Lord who never disappoints.” In another meeting with the incarcerated, the Pope reflected on the concept of “social reintegration.” He said that “all of us make mistakes in life. And all of us must ask forgiveness for these mistakes and undertake the journey of reintegration….The most important thing is what God does for us: He takes us by the hand and helps us go forward. And this is called hope! And with this hope, with his trust, it is possible to walk day by day. And with this steadfast love, which accompanies us, hope never lets us down, truly.”
We must always keep in mind that Prison Ministry is a Corporal Work of Mercy.
If you are interested in working with the Prison Ministry, please click here.
With this in mind, we offer the following services:
The North American Prison Ministry Apostolate offers bibles and prayer books in English and Spanish to prison chaplains in North America. There is no charge for these products.
Our quarterly publication, “The Serving Brother” is published in English and Spanish and sent to prisons in 37 countries in North America, the Caribbean Basin and Oceania.
We visit county jails, state and federal Prisons (minimum, medium and maximum security) and Death Row in California, Florida, Georgia and Tennessee. We celebrate Holy Mass with the inmates, we conduct baptisms and confirmations, we conduct prayer services and bible study sessions.
Many inmates, who have been incarcerated for extended periods of time, lose contact with their families. It is not at all unusual for an inmate who is in prison for a number of years to rarely receive a visitor in the course of a year or years. Prison ministry in the Order of Malta conducts a Pen Pal Program by which those “on the outside” communicate with inmates. In some cases, this will be the only communication with “the outside” that an inmate will have. Suggestions for participating in our Pen Pal Program are contained in our Document “Pen Pal Program” which can be accessed from this web site.