Order of Malta Motto: "Tuitio Fidei et Obsequium Pauperum"
Winter 2020
Christmas Octave
Dear Confreres, 

I want to wish you a blessed Christmas Octave and a Happy New Year.

I pray that this newsletter finds you, your families, and friends healthy and happy.

This has been for me personally, as I am sure it has been for you, one of the most challenging years in recent memory. We have the situation with COVID-19 and it's continued impacts on the physical, emotional, spiritual, and financial well being of loved ones, friends and neighbors.

This year also saw the civil unrest and rioting in the Twin Cities and around the nation after the death of George Floyd. 

This has also been a unique time to serve my first year as your Area Chair. I knew there would be a lot to learn in this new role.  I was looking forward to working closely with more of our members on new ways to serve our masters the sick and the poor, as well as being able to be together in community for spiritual growth. I often feel I have accomplished very little in this first year. 

Given the aforementioned, at times throughout this year I have grown weary and things have felt a bit hopeless, but then I step back and I thank Our Lord for bringing me to the Catholic Church (I am coming up on the 10 year anniversary of my confirmation). I thank him for the nightly Rosary we have been doing as an area since March 19th. I thank him for all of you that have been so helpful and kind to Susan and me beginning in my year of formation to now. I thank him for the wonderful works our members do to help those in need. I realize amidst the immense challenges of this year and the year to come that I am so greatly blessed to have been called to the church and our Order.

I look forward to serving and being with all of you in 2021. Our community needs us more than ever to be the face of Christ to those in need as we live out our Charism. 

In closing, I recently found a small, simple tin plaque my grandmother gave me when I was 10, it reads "Jesus Never Fails".  In those moments when I start to feel down and weary, I look at that plague, which sits on my desk, and remember that the light of Jesus Christ always overcomes the darkest of hours and I am comforted. I pray that his light shines brightly on you and your families and gives you comfort and peace in 2021.

God Bless, 
Ivan Posthumus, KM
Minnesota Area Chair
Order of Malta, American Association
Deacon Steven Koop, ChDD Spiritual Reflection
When I was offered an opportunity to contribute to our newsletter I asked about a topic. I received this wonderful suggestion:
"One theme I've been pondering recently is solidarity. In a time when there is so much temptation to drive people apart what is it about our faith that brings us together as the Body of Christ? In these tumultuous times how can our Order offer people of good will stability and solace?"

Those questions arrived in my e-mail two weeks after the readings of the 25th Sunday in Ordinary Time (A). I think the readings for that day offer answers that I would like to explore with you. 

Read more here
From our Co-Hospitallers
As we are passing from the season of Christmas to Epiphany, let's remember that the decision of Jesus to be Emmanuel, God with us, was not limited to the 33 years living visibly in the Holy Land. His physical presence with us continues in the Holy Eucharist; He still dwells among us.

Matt Heffron, KM, and Arika Heffron, DM
MN Area Co-Hospitallers
From the Communications Chair
Though our normal operations have been disrupted significantly this year, the work of the Order continues on. Our members have persistently served (and continue to serve) our lords the sick and the poor materially and spiritually in the initiatives you can read about below. 

In these times when so many things pull people apart, how wonderful it is to be a force bringing people together. Even if we cannot physically congregate as we would like, our works help foster the unity Jesus desired when he prayed that we all may be one (John 17:21). Indeed, if we are diligent in our work, the world will know that the Father sent Him. 

Let us pray that the Lord pours out his grace upon us, that in the many faces of adversity we may be inspired to champion his love, and spread it in all that we do, and to all we meet. 

Andrew Busam, KM
MN Area Communications Chair
Service Opportunities
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? 

Steven Hawkins, KM
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.  
MN Area Prayer Intentions
Minnesota Prayer Intentions:

Margaret Noble - For her continued healing


For friends and relatives that have been physically, spiritually, or financially impacted by COVID-19

Nighly Rosary: Prayer for the Living and the Dead impacted by COVID-19
We join our prayers to the prayers of the greater church the world over that God may pour out his grace upon His people, and bolster us in these difficult times. To that end, our Area is hosting a nightly rosary at 6:30 pm, except for Sundays, over Teams. Please join us as you are able. 

Join on your computer or mobile app:

Click here to join the meeting

Feed the Hungry: Sodality of St. John the Baptist
Sodality of St. John the Baptist, headed by our own Robert J. Hanten, KCHSJ, KM, organizes regular food packing events for the benefit of local needs as well as communities abroad. Events usually run from 7:00 to 8:30pm and are followed by a social gathering. Event details are posted to our area website calendar here.

Health safety measures are in place to account for the current pandemic, and most healthy individuals from age 12 to 65 can participate. This is a need that is always with us, but is especially important now. In chaotic times, giving someone the peace of knowing that they will not go hungry is a powerful way of showing God's love. 
Feed the Hungry: 
Dorothy Day Center
We continue to serve dinner the 4th Friday of every month at the Dorothy Day Center in St Paul from 4:00pm to approximately 6:00pm.  Reminders are sent out each month.  But we also have available the opportunity to serve 
any evening from 7:00pm to 9:00pm on second floor of Higher Ground on the Dorothy Day Campus.  It's a much smaller environment dedicated primarily to working residents who can't be back to the shelter in time for daily dinner at 4:30pm.  Several members of the Order find this an easy opportunity to serve that doesn't interrupt their work day.  For details and volunteer signup, Click here.

Steven Hawkins, KM
Cradle of Hope Service Opportunity
Cradle of Hope was awarded one of our area grants this year. Cradle of Help (formerly Project Life) was founded by Ann Dickinson, DM in 1973. For those of you not familiar with the organization it is most likely because it operates behind the scenes disbursing financial aid to pregnant women at Crisis Pregnancy Centers across the state of Minnesota. This video from their 2017 gala will give you an idea of the wonderful work that they do: Cradle of Hope

You can also visit their website at: 
In talking with Ann during the grant process I was made aware that there are also hands-on service opportunities that may be of interest to our area members. Ann and I have discussed setting up a 30-minute call for those interested in learning more about Cradle of Hope and how our members can be of service. If you are interested in learning more, please send an email to:  

Ivan Posthumus, KM
Little Sisters of the Poor Supply Needs
Little Sisters of the Poor have been in need of different supplies during the COVID-19 quarantine. A number of our members have donated supplies over the last month and I and Mother Theresa thank you for your generosity. They can still use our help. If you are interested in donating supplies please email Ivan Posthumus, KM to find out what supplies Mother Theresa would like to have donated. 
Minnesota Area News
Upcoming Lenten Retreat
Our next Area retreat is tentatively planned for Saturday, February 20th, with Father Mark Pavlak, Deputy Chaplain, as our retreat master. The location will be determined shortly; please save the date for this event.
2021 Area Grants
2021 is only three months away, and it is time to think about grants. Over the last three years the Minnesota area Order of Malta have given out over $24,000 in grants to local Catholic organizations for items ranging from medical equipment too covering operational expenses for organizations. 

The process for grants applications begin on 15 January 2021 and run through 15 March 2021. 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 via email or by cell phone at 
MarcJenny@gmail.com or 612-382-1041.

MN Area Retreat
The Minnesota Area conducted our Area Retreat on the weekend of World Day of the Poor at Holy Family Church, Saint Louis Park. Our Retreat Master, Father Joseph Johnson, ChM, wove into his talk the themes of World Day of the Poor and encouraged all Knights, Dames, Associates, and Auxiliary to do something concrete for those in need, saying "The credibility of the Church will only be re-established by the works of mercy."
Malta Mobile Ministry Update
This year the MN area has been exploring the possibility of acquiring a van from the American Association to use for area volunteering. Many opportunities for use were identified, and a program outlined, but with the pandemic and the availability of our members for volunteering it was decided that we would not pursue this opportunity in 2021. 

However, we will be re-engaging the discussion in the 3rd quarter of the coming year for a potential 2022 acquisition. 
Duluth Clothing Drive
Throughout the month of November Andrew Busam held a winter clothing drive in honor of St. Martin of Tours. Donations were routed to CHUM (Churches United in Ministry) of Duluth for distribution at their emergency shelter. 
Food Packing with Sodality of St. John
On the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, December 8th, Knights, Dames, Associates, and family members from the Minnesota Area packed food for local food shelves. For several years, the Area has supported a small local food packing ministry, the Sodality of Saint John the Baptist, started by some of our members. We have shipped thousands of packages of meals to Hôpital Sacré Coeur in Milot, Haiti; to Hope for Haiti; and the relief efforts after the hurricanes in the Bahamas in late 2019. However, due to the economic impacts of the pandemic, our food shelves here in the Twin Cities have had greater needs than usual, and our last two packing events have been able to go to ministries serving our more immediate neighbors.
Committee Volunteers
The MN Area board is looking for volunteers for each our committees. Please contact Ivan Posthumus, KM if you are interested in volunteering or have questions.
Service Opportunity Ideas
The MN Area board is always interested in hearing about new service opportunities that our members may be interested in participating in. Please contact Arika Heffron, DM and Matt Heffron, KM if you would like to discuss a service opportunity that we can share with the area membership.
Annual Meeting
We will be scheduling an area meeting in February (Date TBD) via Teams to review our 2020 area activities. An invite will be sent out mid-January with conference information and agenda. If you have any questions please contact Ivan Posthumus, KM
MN Area Events Calendar
All MN area events are listed on the American Association website under our area page in the calendar section. 

Click here to access the area calendar 

Please contact Andrew Busam, KM with any questions or for additions to the calendar. 
In This Issue
2021 Year of Discernment for Investiture
Alex Lovstad

MN Area Board
MN Area Chair

Matt Hefron, KM
Arika Heffron, DM

AUX Member Chair
Dorothy Guanella, DM
Marc Jenny, KM
Patty Hooley, DM
Tom Hooly, KM
Communications Chair
Andrew Busam, KM
Britt Noser, KM
MN Area Chaplains
Fr. Joseph Johnson, ChM

Fr. Mark Pavlak, ChD

Deacon Steven Koop, ChDD

Read the article concerning the election of Fra' Marco Luzzago as Lieutenant of the Grand Master here
Read the current edition of the American Association Newsletter,
Download the Order of Malta, American
 Association mobile app
Upcoming Events

 Lenten Retreat:
Tentatively planned for Saturday Feb. 20, 2021

First Saturday Mass:
The first Saturday of the month at 8:00am, at the Church of the Holy Family, 5900 West Lake Street, Saint Louis Park.  

World Day of the Sick Mass:
February 13th, 2021, 10am, at the Church of Saint Agnes, 535 Thomas Ave W, St Paul, MN 55103

Dorothy Day:
4th Friday of every month at the Dorothy Day Center in St Paul from 4:00pm to approximately 6:00pm. 

Sodality of St John the Baptist:

Mission Statement of the Order of Malta
The Order of Malta is a worldwide, lay religious order of the Roman Catholic Church, which seeks to glorify God by promoting the sanctification of each member through his or her work with the sick and the poor and defense of the Catholic faith. 
To learn more please visit:   www.orderofmaltaamerican.org
1091 Marie Ave, Mendota Heights, MN 55118