Order of Malta

Knights Hospitaller

2018 Pilgrimage for Life

 

More than fifty members of the American Association joined their hearts and their voices in unity and prayer in Washington, DC to be the voice for those most vulnerable and under constant attack — the unborn. Coming from the Northeast, the Midwest, the South, they joined hundreds of thousands of like-minded people in a peaceful statement of respect for life and prayers for an end to abortion.

On Thursday afternoon, members joined for a pre-vigil Mass, reflection given by Sr. Mary Elizabeth at the Sisters of Life Convent and a luncheon, just blocks from the Basilica. The Order was again given the responsibility and privilege by the USCCB to identify ten Knights and Dames to assist the disabled attendees at the Vigil Mass that evening. The Knights and Dames helped them in and out of the Basilica and assisted them as they brought up the gifts at the Offertory. Helping the sick is part of the Order’s charism; it is nice that the USCCB recognizes that and invites members of the Order to participate.

Afterwards, the group gathered back at the hotel for fellowship and refreshments. It was a delightful evening and especially nice to spend time with those who traveled such a long distance to join the Pilgrimage. On Friday morning, the weather was a balmy 41˚with Blessed Mother Blue sky all day and the sun beamed down on the marchers like Grace from Heaven.

Bishop Edward Scharfenberger, Conventual Chaplain from Albany, celebrated Mass on the morning of the March at Saint Patrick’s Church and led the group in song and prayer when the group arrived at the Supreme Court. Also accompanying the Bishop were about 200 of his flock from the Albany area to march alongside members from the Order. Seeing hundreds of thousands of young people from across our nation march up Constitution Avenue was a sight to behold. Many were moved by their peaceful and spiritual demonstration of faith. It was both impressive and inspiring to see so many young Priests, Seminarians and Sisters participating in the March. It provides so much hope for the future of the Catholic Church. About 25 of the Sisters of Life and a youth group of 20 from New Jersey joined the Association members for the Post-March Reception.

That evening, there were three tables representing the Order of Malta at the Rose Dinner. Words cannot convey the spirit of love and joy that was felt being among these Pilgrims. Praying together, sharing meals, making new friendships and renewing old ones was such a gift. There was a true sense of the heartfelt dedication these people have for the sanctity of every human life. They made the commitment to step out and defend the faith. Many said they found it so rewarding that they are planning to attend again next year. Well, our prayers were answered and we had in all aspects
a very successful Pilgrimage. With the registration fee and generous donations from members of the Order, we were able to cover all expenses and make donations to Catholic Charities and the CCNV Homeless Shelter. It is with tremendous gratitude we recognize that through the efforts of Dr. Jeffrey Trexler, this year the Pilgrimage for Life received official status as a recognized Order of Malta Pilgrimage, from the Prelate in Rome. The staff at the NY office were unfailing in their support. The time and effort they contributed was immeasurable and the Pilgrimage for Life could not have been done without them.

Order of Malta, American Association, U.S.A.

American Association, U.S.A
1011 First Avenue, Room 1350
New York, NY 10022
(212) 371-1522