The Order of Malta has its origin in Jerusalem, the place of the Lord’s dying and rising. Its journey through history has seen the Order move from Jerusalem to Rhodes to Malta to Rome and far beyond. Yet Jerusalem is etched for ever in the heart of the Order. So too is the death and resurrection of Christ. For Christians, Jerusalem matters ultimately because of Easter. It would be a fascinating place even without Easter, but there are many fascinating places in the world. For Christians, Jerusalem can lay claim to being “true pole of all the earth” (Psalm 48:3) because there the powers of death were at last defeated. Because of its history, the Order too would be a fascinating phenomenon even without Easter. Easter, however, makes the Order not just another fascinating phenomenon, but a work of the God who raised Jesus from the dead. For us, the path of obsequium pauperum et tuitio fidei is a proclamation of Easter. In a world where death seems to have the last word, the Order stands at the heart of the Church to proclaim to the world that life, not death, has the last word, because Jesus now lives for ever. Every Easter blessing to each of you and to the entire Order of Malta.
Most Rev Mark Coleridge, Archbishop of Brisbane