What are the roots of the Maltese

Maltese relief service

The Maltese Aid Service (MHD) is a lay order and a Catholic aid organization. The seat of the local diocesan association is in Würzburg.

History of the Order of Malta

The history of the Maltese Relief Service is closely linked to the history of the Order of Malta.

The Sovereign Knights and Hospital Order of St. John of Jerusalem of Rhodes and Malta has two roots. Founded around 1048 in Jerusalem, it is one of the oldest religious orders. At the same time, however, it has always been recognized by the international community as a separate subject of the international legal community. The order is summarized in the double term “Tuitio Fidei et Obsequium Pauperum” and means living, defending and witnessing the faith (tuitio fidei) and serving the poor and sick (obsequium pauperum).

The order comes into being around the year 1050 as a monastic foundation of some merchants from Amalfi. He was placed under the protection of St. John the Baptist with the task of running a hospital and hospice for pilgrims in the Holy Land. In 1113 he was recognized by Pope Paschal II as an ecclesiastical order. Until the abandonment of the island of Malta (1798), the members of the order were predominantly religious friars who had taken the vows of poverty, chastity and obedience. Most of the approximately 13,500 knights and ladies today are laymen. But even if they have not taken any religious vows, they are all committed to a Christian life and Christian charity, which means actively serving one's neighbor.

Religious roots

While the Malteser Hilfsdienst is rooted in the Roman Catholic Church, the Johanniter-Unfall-Hilfe has the same origins with an Evangelical-Lutheran background. This is also made clear by the logo, which symbolizes the Maltese cross.


Malteser Hilfsdienst e.V. - Diocesan Association of Würzburg
Mainaustrasse 45 a
97082 Wuerzburg
Telephone 0931 4505-0

Further local and city associations in the district

See also

Web links