Vatican Orders Matthew Festing Not to Travel to Rome for Order of Malta Election

This is unbelievable! The Vatican is a small independent state situated within Rome – a Pope has no authority to forbid anyone from coming to the Eternal City if he should desire to. RORATE CAELI claims: “Ever since the Porta Pia fell, in 1870, and Rome became the capital of a newly united Italy, no Pope has ever again claimed the right to forbid anyone from coming to Rome. […] It’s what happened to the former head of the Knights of Malta, Fra Matthew Festing — first forced by the Pope to resign, now ordered (!!!!!) not to come to Rome during the time of the Election of his own successor!” 

Fra’ Matthew Festing

Some in the Order say move is designed to keep Fra’ Festing from having any influence in the election of a new Grand Master.

By Edward Pentin (on National Catholic Register)

In a surprising move, Pope Francis’ special delegate to the Order of Malta has instructed Fra’ Matthew Festing, the Order’s former Grand Master, not to travel to Rome for the election of his successor.

In a letter dated April 15 (see below), Archbishop Angelo Becciu said that many of the Order had “expressed their wish” that Fra’ Festing not travel to Rome for the election on April 29 as they felt his presence would “reopen wounds” and prevent a return to harmony following the dispute earlier this year regarding the dismissal and later reinstatement of Albrecht von Boeselager as Grand Chancellor.

The archbishop said he had “shared the decision with the Holy Father” and that he should therefore forego his trip to Rome “as an act of obedience.”

The news is surprising as sources inside the Order say Fra’ Festing, who the Pope asked to resign in January, remains very popular within the Order and could even be re-elected. The Pope has also said he would accept his re-election.

They claim this move is therefore an attempt by some who wish to take the Order in a distinctly new direction to keep Fra’ Festing from having any influence in the upcoming election.

More soon.

Lettera Festing 15-04-2017 on Scribd


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10 Responses to Vatican Orders Matthew Festing Not to Travel to Rome for Order of Malta Election

  1. In other news, Theresa May bans Jeremy Corbyn from London until June 9th.

    Actually, the analogy is not perfect, because as Prime Minister she probably does have the power to do that (e.g. using his terrorist links as an excuse), whereas it is clear that Pope Francis, although the de facto illegal ruler of the Order of Malta Sovereign State, has no such right. He’s just abusing the notion of “obedience” and Fra’ Matthew will comply because he’s a decent chap.


  2. LeoG says:

    Your presence would make us all feel terribly uncomfortable – you know, that feeling you get when you know the truth and are fully aware that you’re on the wrong side of it. You know, that prickly feeling you’d get if using or promoting contraception when it goes against the firm teaching of Holy Mother Church – just to take one possible example. We probably wouldnt even be able to look you straight in the eyes without blushing. Come on old bean, there’s a good chap…

    (Well…at least the dear Archbishop promises to remember Fra Festing in his prayers…there’s a deal-maker and a sure consolation for him! Sheesh…)


  3. toadspittle says:

    “…a Pope has no authority to forbid anyone from coming to the Eternal City if he should desire to…”

    Nor is Pope Francis doing so. Read it again. As the letter says – he can’t. All the Pope can do is suggest it’s better that Fra’ Festing doesn’t show up. It’s up to the Fra’ what he actually does.

    “…now ordered (!!!!!) not to come to Rome!” is just more CP&S paranoia.*

    However, I do agree the letter is a masterpiece of oily hypocrisy and thinly-veiled threat.
    The Fra’ should show up anyway, and vigorously rattle his sword at the scoundrels.
    That’ll learn the Delegato. Italians famously don’t care for the idea of cold steel up ’em.

    [* The Moderator – the paranoid always see “paranoia” in others, never themselves.]


  4. marysong says:

    This is simmilar to the treatment given by Pope Francis to the Franciscans of the Immaculate. That is … illogical and ‘mean’ … In this case there is another factor however. A large sum of money. Very large.


  5. Crow says:

    What is the story with the large sum of money? Do we know who gave it?


  6. toadspittle says:

    “The Moderator – the paranoid always see “paranoia” in others, never themselves…”

    Did Becciu order Festing not to come to Rome, or didn’t he?
    “…now ordered (!!!!!) not to come to Rome!”
    If not, it’s plainly paranoid to go around moaning, head-clutching, and insisting – that he did. Read the letter again.

    [Moderator – Nitpicking, Toad? READ the introduction again! RORATE CAELI gives it that interpretation, not us… but as you have admitted, they’re not far off.]


  7. toadspittle says:

    Either it’s an order – or it’s not.
    “Nitpicking” doesn’t come into it. What he’s been given is a suggestion containing a thinly-veiled threat of “…or else.”
    Festing (in my opinion) should go anyway. They can’t stop him.
    What can they do to him, anyway? Box his ears? Cut off his head?
    Fire him? Haven’t they done that already? What has he got to lose?


  8. marysong says:

    Crow, Details about the large sum of money can be found at ‘Inside the Vatican’ Letter #5 January 26, 2017 Knights of Malta and Freemasonry #2 “A huge bequest from a French member directed towards the French Association was instead put in a slush fund of some sort. The lawyer who did the work on it in Switzerland is under investigation, and, those in the know include various members of the Vatican Commission, who would in effect be examining their own actions.” Private E Mail from a member of the Knights of Malta


  9. kathleen says:

    Surprise, surprise! Looks like the “ousted Knights of Malta leader”, Fra’ Matthew Festing, has indeed returned to Rome to vote in the election of his successor in the Order of Malta after all. Good for him!

    According to the Catholic Herald’s article today, Fra’ Festing said “he planned to cast his ballot at Saturday’s election” – just as he has every right to do!

    The Knights of Malta soap opera took on new drama on Wednesday as the order’s ousted leader apparently returned to Rome on the eve of the election for his successor in spite of a papal delegate asking him not to.

    Fra’ Matthew Festing, whom Pope Francis effectively ousted as Grand Master in January, is technically eligible to be re-elected during Saturday’s vote. But he told fellow knights he merely wanted to cast his ballot.

    In an April 15 letter, Francis’s delegate running the order, Archbishop Angelo Becciu, had told Fra’ Festing to stay away from Rome, saying his presence at the election “would reopen wounds and prevent the event from taking place in an atmosphere of peace and harmony.”

    Vatican commentator Edward Pentin said this instruction had been reconsidered partly because, as a professed knight, Fra’ Festing’s absence would have invalidated the ballot.

    Fra’ Festing has told the order he plans to vote, and two knights told The Associated Press he was back in Rome on Wednesday…..”


  10. toadspittle says:

    Festing plainly took Toad’s advice (April 20, 9.22) above.
    Sensible fellow. If only everyone did.


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