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Across the world, the Order of Malta celebrates St John’s Day, anniversary of its patron saint

London, 24 June 2021

By tradition, every 24 June the Order marks the birth of St John the Baptist, its patron saint. In London this year, the celebration was especially noted, as members were able to come together at St James’s Spanish Place for a Mass officiated by Monsignor John Armitage, while observing strict covid measures. In his homily Monsignor Armitage reminded the congregation of the Order’s mission  – to serve the poor and the sick, inspired by Christian love, and that, in this service to those in need “we grow in understanding of why we do what we do.”

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The mission of the Order of Malta is inspired by its tradition of ‘Tuitio Fidei et Obsequium Pauperum', to assist the poor and the sick, and bear witness to the Christian faith.


The Sovereign Order of Malta is a sovereign subject of international law. The Order - which is based in Rome, in via Condotti - has its own Government, an independent magistracy, and bilateral diplomatic relations with 110 countries.


The Order of St John of Jerusalem is one of the oldest institutions of Western and Christian civilisation. Present in Palestine in around 1048, it is a lay religious Order, traditionally of military, chivalrous, noble nature.