Bishop Jean Laffitte loves his “Lord, the poor and the sick”. It is an old concept, he explains, that the Order of Malta speaks of those they serve as Christ, literally – “Our Lord, the poor and the sick”. Source: The Catholic Leader.
He said Christ identified Himself with the least of us and His entire ministry was “to help the poor and the sick”.
“When we say, ‘our Lord’, it is because we try to recognise in the sick and in the poor, the person of Christ and to Christ we will say ‘the Lord’, ‘my Lord’, ‘our Lord’,” he said.
Bishop Laffitte is serving as prelate for the Order of Malta, where he is responsible for the priests of the order across the world.
His last week has been a whirlwind of conference talks and meetings at the Order of Malta Australia national conference in Brisbane.
The Order of Malta is 900 years old and has a rich history from medieval times to the modern era.
Despite its age, Bishop Laffitte was confident his order remained relevant in today’s world.
“It’s not only a human institution,” he was quick to point out.
He said it was the grace of God and the power of the charism itself that meant it would always be relevant.
During his time representing the order, he has travelled to 40 countries. He said his travels had shown him the richness and diversity of the order across the world.
He marvelled at how different places and cultures could be one from the other, and yet how similar was the spirituality that permeated it all.
“It gives you joy, you know, real joy,” he said. “The Order of Malta is a family … in Christ we are the same family.”
Caring for poor and growing in faith are two sides of the same coin, visiting bishop says (By Joe Higgins, The Catholic Leader)