By Peter J. Smith

  ROME, February 1, 2007 ( – The Sovereign Military Order of Malta has expressed disbelief that Terry McAuliffe, a high profile pro-abortion Catholic, would be attempting to join the Knights of Malta since his pro-abortion views conflict with the Catholic Church’s defense of the sanctity of life.

  The Order’s Communication’s Office in Rome contacted LifeSiteNews after LifeSiteNews reported that McAuliffe had boasted on Monday’s edition of the Hugh Hewitt show that he was a pro-abortion Catholic and was even invited to join the Knights of Malta. (

“You can be absolutely sure that the organization Terry McAuliffe is referring to, is not the legitimate Order of Malta,” Eugenio Ajroldi from the Knight’s Communications Office in Rome told LifeSiteNews. “Unfortunately all over the world are active bodies and associations which sell false knighthoods, making use of our name or variants for commercial or personal purpose quite unrelated to the aims and traditions of the Order.”

  Incredulous that a high profile pro-abortion leader like McAuliffe would apply for the famed Knights of Malta – an order distinguished by a long history of defending the Catholic Church and Christian Civilization – the Knights have posted a warning today on their official website titled “Self-styled Orders” warning Catholics not to be taken in by organizations “trying to represent themselves as legitimate and recognised orders of Saint John.”

“Besides creating misunderstanding and confusion, they hurt the good will the Order has established over many years” reads the statement. “These organisations have no connection whatsoever with the Sovereign Military Order of Malta whose headquarters is located in Rome… and which maintains formal diplomatic relations with over 96 States and International Organisations.”

  However, the Order of Malta Federal Association, USA, is indeed one of the Knights of Malta’s three American branches, and a source there reconfirmed for LifeSiteNews that McAuliffe has merely applied for knighthood. The formation process, however, takes a year and requires approval from the order’s leaders headquartered in Rome, who are unlikely to approve McAuliffe in light of his public repudiation of the Church’s teaching on life.

  See the Knights of Malta reaction that a pro-abortion Catholic would consider becoming a Knight:

  To respectfully contact the Order of Malta Federal Association, USA to discuss Terry McAullife’s anti-life positions:

  1730 M. Street, NW, Suite 403
  Washington, DC 20036
  202-331-2494 – Phone
  202-331-1149 – Fax

  Contact form on website:

  The Knights may also be contacted at headquarters in Rome:

  Sovereign Military Order of Malta
  Magistral Palace
  Via Condotti, 68 – 00187 Rome – Italy
  Tel. +39.06.67581.1 – Fax +39.06.6797.202

  Email address: [email protected]

  Related LifeSite Coverage:

  Terry McAuliffe: A Pro-Abortion US Knight of Malta?