The Order of Malta towards the third millennium
The Future Strategies’ project, of which more and more is heard about in the world of the Order, was started in 1987 on the initiative of the Presidents of the National Associations when H.M.E.H. the Prince and Grand Master Fra’ Angelo de Mojana di Cologna entrusted me, as Receiver of the Common Treasure with the organization of a seminar for the future strategies of the Order. This seminar was held in December 1988 and was attended by H.M.E.H. the Prince and Grand Master Fra’ Andrew Bertie and all the active members of the Order in the world. The seminar was very successful, and revealed a great number of active forces anxious to work along strategic lines, indicating people and establishing time schedules. Since then many meetings have been held and important decisions have been made according to the subsequent directives. The General Chapter of 1989, the Order’s highest court, ratified the proceedings and created specific commissions, thus prompting many reflections. As an introduction, I would like to point out the premises and subsequent considerations which have inspired the above mentioned programme:
A) The development, in the last five years, of the relations of the Order with various countries and not only with those with which relations are established at the level of diplomatic representations. The importance of the State visits of the present Grand Master, when seen in a framework of support and incentive to the activities carried out or to be planned by the institutions operating in the country (Grand-Priories, Sub-Priories, National Associations and Embassies).
The consequent need for Grand-Priories, Sub-Priories, National Associations and Embassies to proceed, in the first instance, to an analysis of the human and financial resources available in each country in order to reach an evaluation of the actual possibilities of action for the Order.
· The subsequent need for co-ordination with the government bodies of the country concerned, in order to define projects and activities which can be included in plans for the financing of international cooperation.
· The resulting need for a close co-ordination between the Periphery and Magistry for the indispensable involvement of the structures of the Grand Magistry and the representations of the Order to the international bodies, so that all suitable actions may be carried out exclusively on the basis of well-defined programmes.
· The clear and precise confirmation that the Grand Magistry does not wish to interfere in areas of ‘constitutional’ autonomy of the peripheral institutions of the Order.
· The need to finally clarify that co-ordination and strategic planning are tools used in the modern world to optimise activities carried out in full autonomy by organizations referring back to a central institution. In the case of the Order, the organizations themselves are an integral and dependent part of both a religious and sovereign institution.
Roma. Castello della Magliana. Il Conte Carlo Marullo di Condojanni apre i lavori del Primo Seminario per le Future Strategie del dicembre 1988, alla presenza di S.A. Em.ma il Principe e Gran Maestro Fra’ Andrew Bertie. Alla sua sinistra il Gran Cancelliere l’Amb. Barone Felice Catalano di Melilli, alla sua destra S.E. Rev.ma Couve de Mourville e Donna Teresa Samaja.
Rome. The Magliana Castle. Count Carlo Marullo opens the works of the First Seminary for Future Strategies in December 1988, in the presence of His Most Eminent Highness the Prince and Grand Master Fra’ Andrew Bertie. On his left, the Grand Chancellor, Amb. Baron Felice Catalano di Melilli, on his right His Most Reverend Excellency Couve de Mourville and Donna Teresa Samaja.
B) The effective action carried out in health care, assistance, social, aid and civil protection fields by many national Associations both within and without their countries, the well-known activities managed with positive results by several Maltese institutions and the particular political and legal position of the Order, which may well be defined as unique in the modern world, have created an atmosphere of trust and consequently of expectation that structures of the Order be able to carry out initiatives which Bodies, Government or international Organizations often find difficult to implement.
The consequent need that all the institutions of the Order, none excepted, feel responsible for creating structures able to meet these expectations, obviously always within their possibilities, in particular, the institutions should devote the utmost effort to promoting an ever increasing involvement of the members of the Order at all levels.
This should apply for the Grand Magistry, the Grand-Priories, the Priories, the Sub-Priories, the National Associations and the Diplomatic Representations, especially when these latter operate in countries where there are no active National Associations.
It appears however necessary to have:
- an increase in vocations
— tools for the involvement and training of members;
— widespread information;
— target-oriented and well organised activities
C) The first promoter of the co-ordination of the international activities of the Order must necessarily be the Grand Magistry.
However, it can be operative only if it has the convinced and unconditioned support of all peripheral structures.
D) The need to define strategies also in the field of spirituality. One of the primary duties of the members should be increasing widespread spirituality in the Order.
I now wish to examine our future expectations in general:
1) the actual operation of the Commission provided for by the General Chapter for Spiritual Activities including, among its members, representatives appointed by the National Associations;
2) the development of communications and exchange of information between centre and periphery;
3) the gathering of information on the activities carried out by Maltese institutions in 1989 through the recently circulated questionnaire;
4) the setting up of a centralized data bank which may gather information on the activities in progress throughout the world;
5) the beginning of the definition of the procedures for the regulation of the use of the Emblem of the Order by all structures, both central and peripheral, as well as the grant of patronage to third parties;
6) the definition of a single badge for all the ambulance Corps of the Order operating in the various countries;
in light of the above, these are the methods and criteria with which it is felt that it may be possible to operate in these various fields of action:
A) Spirituality Commission
All efforts for the new strategies must be made in view of a greater spirituality, to sanctify the initiatives undertaken in the name of the Order, making the most of its missionary aspect and spreading our Faith through our actions. This will be dealt with in greater depth when the report of the Spirituality Commission is ready. At the end of the work of the Commission it will indeed be possible to proceed with the general implementation of the programme here broadly outlined.
B) Health-care and Hospital Work
An exhaustive examination of the international situation is still under way and therefore it is not possible to analyse the actual volume of the activities of the various organizations of the Order. Thus it is yet premature to recommend specific areas of activity. However, the following criteria or guidelines can be defined:
1) The Associations should carry out their Activities under their own responsibility;
2) In the areas connected to hospital work, the Order must bear in mind its origins. Hospital work means direct involvement of the members and thus it should be given maximum priority.
Successful initiatives like the pilgrimage to Lourdes should continue on a yet wider scale.
3) Co-ordination and exchange of know-how between the Associations should be developed.
4) Co-ordinated programs of education, training and medical research in the areas particularly relevant to the works of the Order must be taken into consideration and supported.
5) Co-operation and communication with the relevant organizations outside the Order must be greatly improved.
C) Civil Protection and First Aid
1. Wherever they operate, the Ambulance Corps are an outstanding image of the Order. They represent, therefore, a perfect tool for spreading our ideals within and outside of the Order. The Ambulance Corps are an important means of recruitment and also a means for the improvement of the level of training of the members of the Order.
2. Although the efforts for co-ordination are the competence of the central office of the Hospitaller, the Corps must organize their own system of co-operation and direct mission. Given the need for quick action in case of disasters and the highly specialized technical problems, best results can be obtained if the Corps have a system of ‘regular meetings of the Delegates’. This effort should lead to the creation of a computer network linking up all the associations and covering all human and material resources available. In case of multinational actions, good results could be obtained through an agreement between the relevant Corps and Associations thus avoiding disagreements and waste of efforts. To reduce the impact, the Delegates of the Ambulance Corps will develop a system for the sharing of their know-how, transmitting it to the various Associations which may wish to establish their own Corps. The Hospitaller’s Office will encourage all Associations to study these possibilities and will insist that each member of the Order be given at least basic training in the medical issues and first aid.
D) International Aid
1. Under the auspices of the ideals of the of Order, Charity applied on an international scale and adapted to the needs of the modern world, will guarantee the survival of the Order. The diplomatic and sovereign Status of the Order should be used especially in this way to gain recognition and respect. The increased poverty in the world makes it a duty of each and every institution of the Order, especially in industrialized countries, to work in the field of international aid, in addition to carrying on their national duties and responsibilities.
2. In consideration of the history of the Order and of its possibilities, Aid programmes will focus on the following areas:
— Relief in case of disasters;
— Medical, social and educational aid in developing countries;
— Aid and assistance in East Europe;
— Working for peace, in particular through mediation, doing all that is possible if asked to.
E) International fund raising
I. The Order has a great need to find funds for assistance, charity, research or other types of works, already existing and planned. Theoretically, through its central and regional institutions, the Order has already access to several sources of financing and materials. They are:
— International organizations such as the EEC, UNESCO, WHO, FAO and others;
— National government institutions;
— Private institutions;
— Private individuals; although many activities for fund-raising and research of materials are already operative and well known, this search may still widen its scope.
II. For this purpose it is necessary and advisable to proceed as follows:
1) Communications both from the centre of the Order and from other regions must be particularly encouraged as later described. The Grand Magistry will act jointly with the international institutions and will define co-ordinated procedures in order to avoid any duplication of information.
2) Prior to its start, every project will be subjected to internationally approved feasibility and financial transparency studies. The Office of the Hospitaller — in co-ordination with the institutions of the Order — will define the general standards to be followed.
3) Co-ordinated by the Grand Magistry, the diplomatic network of the Order will support find raising·
4) The Grand Magistry will prepare a study on how to further exploit sources already used in the various countries. Moreover, this study will indicate countries so far not involved enough in fund raising and will set criteria for calls for financial resources raising. As already mentioned, these reports will cover all the activities in developing countries and contain requests for financial aid and will give indications on the distribution requirements of pharmaceutical products. Once integrated into the strategies of the Order, these programmes will inform the world and the Organizations of our aims and of our great initiatives, preferably undertaken as joint- ventures.
5) The organization of financial aid for activities in Central and Eastern European countries will be particularly interesting in future years.
6) The co-operation system explained above will help the distribution of aid coming from the richest Associations to the works of the more needy ones, including planning partnerships between the various National Associations to rationalize aid to eastern European countries and the Third World.
7) The question of contributions to the Grand Magistry will be the object of renewed attention. Such involvement will naturally have greater possibilities of success if some of the suggested strategies are followed and implemented.
8) For the activities themselves it will be necessary to encourage fund raising through the creation of an international Data Bank.
The success of each organization largely depends on internal and external communications.
As already underlined, a great effort will be made by Grand Magistry, Grand Priories, Sub-Priories and Associations, in order to create the fundamental conditions for international consensus and for a real presence of the Order and its works. While waiting for basic measures, such as the definition of the image of the Order in the outside world, these recommendations should be followed:
1) Periodical messages from the Grand Magistry to all members in circular letters in various languages, with instructions on the main spiritual and service aspects of the mission of the Order. The ‘Newsletter’ is the first example of this effort being made by the Grand Magistry.
2) A regional correspondent for communications will be used by Grand Priories, Priories, Sub-Priories and Associations as a local means of connection with the Information Office. The Office of the Receiver of the Common Treasure has reached good results in this field.
3) Periodical messages from the high officers of the Order on issues relating to their respective areas of interest would create bonds between these Offices and the members operating in the same fields.
4) It is absolutely necessary to unite the International Review, the Chronicle, and the other peripheral publications in a single ‘standard-bearer’ publication, to be published twice a year, possibly in two languages, or at least with articles in various languages. This would create important synergies and give financial results.
5) The Year-book should keep its 1990 structure and a part containing mostly news on the works should be added.
6) Once the economic problems between centre and periphery are solved, an International Committee for Communications, composed mainly of regional correspondents co-operating on a regular basis with the Information Office, will be an important tool to spread, information, thus creating a modern ‘Image’ of the Order in the external world.
A preliminary estimate of the costs for the information Office is about LTS $ 250.000=. Since this amount is much higher than the Grand Magistry‘s available funds, it is hoped that the difference may be covered through the co-operation of the ‘Chronicle’, the periodical publication of the Washington Association which has already announced its closure. Its distribution channels could be used for the publications of the Grand Magistry. The Associations will be required to take a subscription for each of their members while informing them of the advantages of such operation. However, if such support is not adequately given, the present great and difficult effort of the Grand Magistry risks being wasted, unless losses are to be shown on the next balance sheets.
G) Emblems and Patronage
In this regard, the most important point is to define, wherever possible, unified emblems and unified procedures of ‘patronage’; this may be obtained only through a close co-operation between the Grand Magistry and the Associations.
I hope to have given a sufficiently comprehensive view of the complex picture of the Future Strategies. Their final result, in my opinion, cannot but being the beginning of the institutional reform of the Order, which will reflect its modern needs. These are no longer the needs of a small State in the middle of the Mediterranean, but those of an international organization operating in the five continents and deserving the utmost consideration. With appropriate constitutional laws which respect tradition, international initiatives can be encouraged and fostered, in the form of joint-ventures too; these initiatives are the only possible answer to the needs of the spirit of charity and service of the Sovereign Order, whose path, under the guidance of the Holy Virgin of Fileremo and of St. John the Baptist, will certainly be radiant under the inspired guidance of H.M.E.H. the Prince and Grand Master. To his work, and to that of the Presidents of the National Associations, we owe the Future Strategies programme which is now being started.
This programme is and is intended to be a door open to all the members of the Maltese Family, to every individual member. A path to be created and on which walking together, serenely and actively in the charisma of Tuitio Fidei and Obsequium Pauperum».
We can find it in every corner of the globe, passing through every continent; it requires everyone’s loyal participation and initiative, in the daily spirituality of each of us.
Situation as of 31 December 1990 on the developments of the programme
for the implementation of the future strategies of the Order
A. Resolution of the Presidents of the National Associations of 18 July 1987,
B. Mandate of the Sovereign Council of 8-9 October 1987 to the Receiver of the Common Treasure to organize a seminar on the future strategies of the Order;
C. Seminar on Future Strategies, 2-3-4 December 1988.
General Chapter 7 March 1989
2nd Meeting, of the Strategies Commission 23 April 1990
1st Report by
the Working Groups 4 June 1990
Meeting of European National Associations Presidents Brussels 22 September 1990
Council 17 September 1990
2. Internal Council
For the formation of the Spirituality Commission and the Strategies Commission and for the co-ordination of the Working Groups and the synthesis of their respective conclusions (8 June 1989-26 June 1989-26 June 1990-13 September 1990).
3. Spirituality Commission
It appointed a working group led by the Prelate of the Order H.M.R.E. Mons. Mario Brini. The Commission, including also representatives of the Grand-Priories and of the National Associations, is waiting for the results of the proposed resolutions; therefore it has not met.
4. Strategies Commission
It covers the duties originally foreseen for the operative working.
The Commission has met twice under the chairmanship of H.E. the Hospitaller on 22 October 1989 and 23 April 1990.
5. The working groups
have forwarded their work to the Secretary of the Commission who, in his turn, has prepared a report on the first stage of the works which will be submitted to the Sovereign Council (Henckel Report of 13.9.1990).
Summary of the main resolutions relating to the implementation of “future strategies”
1. General Chapter of 7 March 1989
It gave mandate to the Sovereign Council to:
· Appoint a Commission for spiritual activities and religious education (Spirituality mission);
· Appoint a Commission for the International Co-ordination and Implementation of strategies (Strategy Commission);
· Revise the statutes of the Maltese Public institutions,
· Issue procedures: the use of the emblem of the Order and the grant of ‘Patronage’.
It gave mandate to the Receiver of the Common Treasure to:
· Prepare a budget for the operation of the above mentioned structures and agree its coverage with Associations and Institutions;
· Complete the study on the Order’s activities in the world.
2. Sovereign Council of 11 April 1989
It established the Internal Council in two forms, one composed of H.E. the Grand Chancellor, one of H.E. the Receiver of the Common Treasure.
A) with the Hospitaller for:
· the appointment of a Maltese Institution as proposing organization;
· the appointment of a working group (operative working group) in order to:
— indicate the rules governing the use of the emblem of the Order and the grant of ‘Patronage’;
— draft proposals relating to the international co-ordination of aid and civil protection activities, communication of problems and revision of statutes
· appoint the co-ordinator of the operative working group,
· indicate the ‘terms of reference’ of the Strategy Commission and of the means of designation of the members to be submitted to the Sovereign Council for appointment;
· the reorganization of the Press Office in co-operation with Working Group 5.
B) with the Grand Commander for:
- the indication of the ‘terms of reference’ of the Spirituality Commission;
- It delegated the Grand Commander and the Prelate to designate the members of the Spirituality Commission to be submitted to the Sovereign Council for appointment;
- It delegated the Receiver of the Common Treasure to update the study on the Order’s activities in the world.
- It delegated the Receiver of the Common Treasure to estimate costs and relevant coverage.
3. Internal Council of 8 June 1989
It indicated a first group of ‘terms of reference’ for the Strategy Commission.
4. Internal Council of 26 June 1989
It completed the ‘terms of reference’ for the Strategies Commission,
- It defined the duties of the Press Office,
- It defined the duties of the Maltese Public Institution,
- It resolved to unify the tasks of the operative working group with those of the Strategy Commission;
- It resolved to propose to the Sovereign Council the appointment of the co-ordinators of the working groups as members of the Strategy Commission;
- It determined the 6 working groups and their co-ordinators;
- It proposed to set up the working groups according to the nationality of the members;
- It entrusted the Hospitaller with the relations with the co-ordinators of the working groups and with the respect of the working schedule.
5. Sovereign Council of 27 June 1989
It resolved to:
· entrust the Strategies Commission with the duties formerly provided for the operative working group;
· confirm the proposals of the Inner Council for the working groups and the appointment of the co-ordinating members of the Strategies Commission;
· appoint Count Henckel von Donnersmarck as Secretary of the Strategies Commission;
· delegate the appointment of the members of the working groups to the Inner Council,
· postpone the final formulation of the ‘terms of reference’ for the Strategy Commission until the duties entrusted to each working group are better defined.
6. Sovereign Council of 12 October 1990
It resolved to:
· give detailed instructions to the Spirituality Commission;
· start the procedures for the implementation of strategies regarding:
Emblems, patronage and flags;
· delegate the Receiver of the Common Treasure to prepare a financial plan, on the basis of which criteria for the prosecution of the programme will be defined, and to continue assembling data on the activities of the Order.
7. Meeting of European National Association Presidents on 22 September 1990
· Creation of a ‘Multinational Standing Commission for International Co-ordination and for the Implementation of Strategies, composed of representatives of the Grand Magistry, Grand Priories, Regents and Presidents of the National Associations, in co-operation with the Hospitaller, in compliance with the General Chapter’s mandate, and following up the work of the Commission for Future Strategies.
· Creation of an International Co-ordination Committee, for first-aid and rescue activities in case of natural disasters, composed of representatives of the Ambulance Corps, with the Hospitaller as Honorary President.
· Creation of an International Committee for Communications with the function of assisting the head of the Information Office in Rome and co-ordinating his activities with the peripheral units.
· Updating of the Data Bank, through the new questionnaire, on all the activities of the Order’s organizations.
· Creation of the proposed partnership between the Associations in developed and developing countries, including those in central and Eastern Europe.
Adoption of a single emblem and local symbols and of standard patronage procedure, wherever possible, together with relevant regulations and guidelines.
8. First Latin-American Meeting of 16-17 November 1990:
· Study of a programme for co-ordinating and distributing aid and for promoting interventions.
· Liaison among the Presidents of the Latin-American Associations and Diplomatic Representatives, with the creation of a special Commission for studying and solving problems.
· Organization of meetings of Presidents and Ambassadors in Latin America to be held each two years.
· Adoption and implementation by the Grand Magistry of resolutions on strategies.
Roma. Basilica dei SS. Apostoli. Le Alte Cariche dell’Ordine ed i Membri del Sovrano Consiglio alle solenni Esequie per la morte del Principe e Gran Maestro, Sua Altezza Eminentissima Fra’ Angelo de Mojana, il 19 febbraio 1988.
Rome. Basilica dei SS. Apostoli. The High Charges of the Order and the Members of the Sovereign Council during the Solemn Funeral Ceremony for the death of the Prince and Grand Master, His Most Eminent Highness Fra’ Angelo de Mojana, on 19 February 1988.