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Catholic World News

Order of Malta’s new leader: ‘Our constitution needs an updating’

July 20, 2022

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CWN Editor's Note: A month after Pope Francis appointed Fra’ John Dunlap as the Sovereign Order of Malta’s new leader, Dunlap said that requirements related to nobility in the Order’s constitution should be changed.

“Our Constitution needs an updating,” he said. “There’s no one who really even qualifies to be grand master anymore according to the Constitution. They require 450 years of nobility on each side of the candidate’s family.”

“The tremendous growth of the Order in the 20th and 21st centuries has been principally in the New World,” Fra’ Dunlap continued. “Most of these folks do not have noble lines or, if they do, they don’t look them up. I have no problem with different grades in the Order, but I don’t think we can have [nobility] as a prerequisite to a position.”

“I think that the Holy Father’s appointment of me as lieutenant of the grand master would speed up the reform efforts, from a practical perspective,” he added. “Rather than spending months electing a new lieutenant, we can continue these efforts and return the Order to regular work sooner.”

The above note supplements, highlights, or corrects details in the original source (link above). About CWN news coverage.


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