By Their Fruits You Will Know Them:
MN Area Order of Malta Winter 2021 Newsletter
Table of Contents
MN Area News
Service Opportunities
Area Chair Ivan Posthumus, KM
Dear Confreres,

Hoping that you and your families are having a blessed Christmastide and wishing you a Happy New Year!

I want to express my gratitude to our members who over this past year have continued to be the face of Christ to so many; be it by serving meals, providing material goods, visiting those who are alone, or by being pen pals for those in prison.

It is humbling to see how our members continue to live out our Charism in a world that seems to be in an ever increasing state of chaos, hostility towards our faith, and weariness.

When I was going through RCIA the instructor said that being Catholic was "countercultural". At the time I didn't fully appreciate the level of truth in that statement. To bear witness to, and defend our faith and its teachings, in this place and time is truly countercultural.

It has been a blessing this past year to be in community with so many of you at our area retreats and Feast days. It is always wonderful to be able to see each other and spend time together.

We continue to say the nightly Rosary. When we started the Rosary on March 19th, 2020, the Solemnity of St. Joseph, I never thought we would still be going strong at the end of 2021.

Please keep Angela Berger and Jesse Greene in your prayers as they continue in their year of formation. I have enjoyed getting to know each of them over this last year.

Know that all of you and your families are in Susan and my prayers as we enter the new year.

God bless you,
Ivan Posthumus, KM
MN Area Chair
Deacon Steven Koop, ChDD
My role model for Advent this year is Bartimaeus. 

The centuries before Jesus, the Messiah, was born were a time of longing, a time of waiting and anticipation. A Messiah was promised; when would he come? We get a sense of this in the Gospel on Gaudete Sunday:

“ Now, the people were filled with expectation … All were asking in their hearts whether John might be the Christ.”

Of course, we are not waiting in the same way: Jesus of Nazareth, the Christ, the Messiah, came. That was 2000 years ago, and different questions confront us: how do you long, how do you anticipate, how do you wait for something that has already happened? What is Advent about in 2021? How should we spend these weeks as we wait to celebrate the anniversary of the birth of Jesus? Is there something more than buying gifts and sending cards, decorating our homes, and planning for gatherings with family and friends? And then there is the ultimate question: “What do you want for Christmas this year?” We all feel a little stressed by Advent, and that doesn’t seem right. 

I offer you Bartimaeus as way to approach Christmas.

Read the full reflection here.
MN Area News
World Day of the Sick 2022
We will be looking for volunteers to assist at this event, as well as members to vest and process in.

Please note the changed date from what was published on the area calendar earlier. The change was due to the Archbishop's availability.

A registration link will be sent out closer to the event, but for now, please save the date.
Investiture 2021
Alex Lovstad, KM and Dr. Rodolfo Savica, KM were invested in November. I want to welcome them as our two newest Knights. Please keep them in your prayers.

Ivan Posthumus, KM
Candidates for Investiture 2022
Please pray for our candidates for investiture and their sponsors.

Angela Burger
Sponsors Sandra Davis, DM
Anne Marie Hansen, DM

Jesse Green
Sponsors Andrew Busam, KM
Fr. Joseph Johnson, ChM
Informational Sessions in Duluth and Brainerd
With the encouragement and aid of Bishop Felton of the Diocese of Duluth, information sessions were held in Duluth and Brainerd to introduce the Order of Malta more widely to the residents. Both events were well attended, and have already begun yielding fruit.

Please pray for the continued development of the Order in northern Minnesota, and for the Lord to send more laborers into his fields. The harvest is great.

Thanks to Bishop Felton, Ivan Posthumous, KM, Susan Linnell, DM, Anne Marie Hansen, DM, and Andrew Busam, KM for their support.
Informational Sessions about the Order of Malta
Given the positive feedback regarding the informational sessions we conducted in Brainerd and Duluth, I am reaching out to all of you to see if there are parishes or groups that you think might be willing to host an informational session.

During these sessions we give a brief overview of the history and works of the Order of Malta, the American Association, and the MN area.

The goal is to spread awareness of the Order of Malta and our Charism. Please contact me if you have any questions or if you would like discuss possible hosting opportunities.

St Martin clothing drive in Duluth
Once again there was a clothing drive held in Duluth during the month of November in honor of St Martin. Soldier, Bishop, Miracle Worker, St Martin is perhaps best known for the story in which he met a beggar on the road and cut his military cloak in half to share. That night he had a dream in which he saw Christ wearing his half cloak, and telling the angels that as Martin had clothed the poor man, so he had clothed Himself (Matthew 25:40).

Sulpicius Severus chronicled St Martin's life at the end of the 4th century. A translation can be found here: The Life of St Martin of Tours

During the clothing drive, winter gear and professional clothing for job interviews were collected and given to the Damiano Center for distribution. May we, like St Martin, always be mindful that whatsoever we do for our Lords the Sick and the Poor, we do for Christ.
Holy Family Hospital Giving Tree at the Cathedral of St. Paul
The Holy Family Hospital Foundation has created a Giving Tree program to help support the Holy Family Hospital in Bethlehem.

Angel tags (ornaments) are placed on the Christmas tree and then parishioners take an Angel tag and make a donation. The Giving Tree program is a way to get parishes involved in this important work of the Order of Malta. To learn more about the Giving Tree program please click here

Anne Marie Hansen, DM and Ursula Kuhrmeyer, AUX, setup a Giving Tree at the Cathedral of Saint Paul.

If you are interested in setting up a Giving Tree in your parish and have any questions please contact Anne Marie Hansen, DM.
2022 Area Grants
We are called to be a slave to our Lord’s poor and sick

Over the last four years the Minnesota area of the Order of Malta has awarded over $32,000 in grants to local Catholic organizations such as the Franciscan Bothers of Peace food shelves and Abria Pregnancy Resources for maintenance of ultrasound equipment that shows women the beating heart of their baby. 
The process for grants applications begins on 15 January 2022 and run through 15 March 2022. The entire process is online.
If you have questions about the grant process or want to know if an organization meets the requirements, please contact Marc Jenny by email or cell phone at 

Marc Jenny, KM or 612-382-1041
Service Opportunities
New Service Opportunities
We are always looking for new service opportunities for our area. If you know of or would like to discuss a potential service opportunity please reach out to our Co-Hospitallers Arika Heffron, DM and Matt Heffron, KM
Twin Cities Prison Ministry
I find it funny how we so often compartmentalize our thoughts, our lives…who we see and who/what we can put in a box in the attic, gathering dust, to be opened…well, when we have time…I’ll think about that when I have more time…

In Jesus’ admonition to us in Matthew 25:31-46, there is a passage the Order of Malta lives by…feed the hungry, clothe the naked, care for the ill and you cared for Jesus, but visiting those imprisoned is a little harder to do. So many stigmas and preconceptions are attached to journeying with those affected by incarceration yet their needs are so very great.

In our great country (and I mean that sincerely, but like everything we have flaws), we incarcerate more people per capita than any other country in the world. Less than 5% of the world’s population is in the United States, but 20% of the world’s incarcerated people are here.

About 0.7% of the United States is currently in a federal or state prison or local jail. If this number seems unworthy of the term “mass incarceration,” consider that 0.7% is just shy of 1%, or approximately one out of a hundred people.

This does not include all of those affected by incarceration: families, friends, the community, the economy, the judicial system, the staff and especially the children. Seems like a very grim story. But truth be told, 97% of all those who are incarcerated return to our communities. They are in the pews at church, the supermarket, community events, etc. With that in mind, we need to change our perceptions from being a punitive nation to one of rehabilitation and reconciliation.

That rehabilitation can begin and be sustained by a mentor on the outside to walk with them on their journey back to being a full citizen in our community. Or from a monthly letter as a penpal, doing the same thing, walking and praying with them as you accompany them on their journey. Or welcoming families and friends of the incarcerated, who through no fault of their own, are now alone, stigmatized and unsupported. How many children go to school each day, worrying about others finding out about their parent’s “deep dark secret.” You can start a support group at your church and establish a safe, confidential setting to support each other…not a therapy group but a place to just speak their truth without judgement and to pray together.

Please check out our website: to view past workshops and forums that describe ways for you to dust off that box in the attic and to be involved or request a booklet of activities that you can participate in by emailing

Thank you to the American Order of Malta of Minnesota for your spiritual and financial support. We are grateful.
Fay Connors, AUX
American Association Pen Pal Program
The American Association sponsors a safe and secure Pen Pal Program for prisoners, run by the Minnesota Delegation. This provides members and friends a means to live out Christ's call to "visit the imprisoned" from the comfort of our homes and on our own time schedule.
Pen Pals commit to writing no less than one letter a month for no less than one year to an inmate assigned to them. Pen Pals send their letters direct to inmates using a pseudonym and our innocuous P.O. Box as the return address. Inmates write to you using your pseudonym and mail their letters to our P.O. Box and we in turn forward letters to you. And the process repeats. 
Full details are available here. Document #2 contains an application we hope you will complete and return. Other documents include letterhead, sample letters, tips for writing effective letters and more. 
If you find yourself with a little extra time, we have hundreds of inmates waiting to connect. Most will someday be released and what we do now will have a profound impact on their return to our communities. While up to 65% of released inmates nationwide return within 3 years, those who have someone who cares about them while they are serving their time, return at a rate of less than 5%. That's not 5% lower than 65%. That's less than 5% total return! Can you be present to someone in need of a Pen Pal? 

Click here to read the latest update for the Pen Pal Program

Steve Hawkins, KM
Cook and Serve Dinner at Dorothy Day
Life gets busy with travel, work, school, and church schedules. However, the need in our communities is always present. We invite you to consider volunteering, or continuing to volunteer, at our monthly service at Dorothy Day. The next dates include:

Friday, January 28, 4pm-6pm
Friday, February 25, 4pm-6pm
Friday, March 25, 4pm-6pm
Friday, April 22, 4pm-6pm
Friday, May 27, 4pm-6pm

The location is 422 Dorothy Day Place, Saint Paul, MN 55102, and you can sign up at Loaves & Fishes: Loaves & Fishes Sign Up ( Please note that this link resets every month, so you can always sign up for the next one that is upcoming.
Volunteer for Membership Committee Chair
I am looking for Knights and Dames to serve as the Membership Chair or Co-Chairs. This role is critical to the growth of the area. Please prayerfully consider serving in this role. If you have questions as to what the role and responsibility are please contact me at Ivan Posthumus, KM or by phone 612.237.4842.
Prayer Requests
Prayer Requests: Any intentions for prayer requests should be sent to Andrew Busam, KM

  • For Margaret Nobles continued healing.
First Saturday Mass
First Saturdays Mass, every First Saturday of the month at 8:00am, will continue at the Church of the Holy Family, 5900 West Lake Street, Saint Louis Park.  
Prayer of the Order of Malta from the Daily Office of Our Lady for Knights and Dames of the Order
I wanted to share these 3 prayers of the Order of Malta which are are in the Daily Office of Our Lady for Knights and Dames of the Order

1) Knight's Blessings - (when taking leave of brethren it was customary to give and receive blessing)

May Almighty God bless you and strengthen you in His service that you may honour Him, show courtesy to all, protect the weak and serve Christ in the sick and the poor.

2) Prior to Robing

Cloth me Lord, with the robe of salvation and have me wear a mantle of justice.

3) Prayer While Removing Robes

Lord God, giver of peace and love, grant us true submission to Your Will, and fill our hearts with brotherly love through Christ, our Lord.
Nightly Rosary
Nightly Rosary:

The MN Area has been doing an online nightly rosary Monday through Saturday at 6:30pm. All are invited to join in. The prayers are offered for an end to the pandemic, and for the intentions of our members. You can select the link below or call in for the Rosary

or call

Meeting ID: 847 9494 8723
Passcode: 128636
MN Area Leadership and Chaplains
MN Area Board

MN Area Chair:


Matt Hefron, KM
Arika Heffron, DM

Auxiliary Member Chair:

Dorothy Guanella, DM

Marc Jenny, KM

Membership Chair:

Communications Chair:

Andrew Busam, KM


Britt Noser, KM
MN Area Chaplains

Fr. Joseph Johnson, ChM

Fr. Mark Pavlak, ChD

Deacon Steven Koop, ChDD
Order of Malta, MN Area | Website