The 400 years of the Brothers of St John of God in Bavaria
“Your mission lives on”
On 11 November, the Brothers of the Bavarian Province celebrated the
closure of the 400th Jubilee Year of the Brothers of St John of God in Bavaria
with 200 guests, including Cardinal Reinhard Marx, Bishop Bertram Meier of
Augsburg, the Prior General Brother Jesús Etayo, who had travelled from Rome
for the occasion, and the Premier of Bavaria, Markus Söder. Exactly 400 years
ago, the Duke Wolfgang Wilhelm had signed the founding act of the St Wolfgang
Hospital, the Order's first centre in Bavaria.
Cardinal Marx: what it means to be a Christian
In his homily during the Solemn Eucharist, Cardinal Marx said that the
Gospel story of the Good Samaritan teaches the importance of not looking at
ourselves, but rather looking at others. As Pope Francis says, the Church must
go out to the peripheries. 'What counts is love,' he said.
St John of God and his successors, the Brothers of St John of God,
understood this. A society is only a good society imsofar as it includes the
sick, the old, the weak and the suffering. Cardinal Marx thanked the Brothers
of St John of God and their co-workers for their commitment. At the same time
he spurred them on: "Your mission lives on! This is important because your
mission is 'a sign of encouragement and hope also for future
The Premier praised the Order for its dedication
The ceremony following Mass in the Neuburg Municipal Theatre was
dominated by the Jubilee anniversary motto 'HOSPITALITY CREATES FUTURE'.
During the ceremony, the Bavarian Premier, Markus Söder, described the
Order of St John of God as a solid and reliable component part of Bavaria's
healthcare and social landscape. He thanked the Order for its commitment to
Christian hospitality by the side of the sick, the poor and the needy.
The Bavarian Province: a 'leader'
Asked whether the Bavarian Province of the Order held a privileged place
in his heart, the Prior General, Brother Jesús Etayo, initially responded
diplomatically, stating that there were a total of 17 Provinces in the Order which
naturally work together synergistically at a regional level. In this sense, the
Bavarian Province was a "leader in Europe", the Prior General
Afterwards, some of the employees and guests of the Province's centres
presented practical examples of the life and work of the Brothers in Bavaria's
hospitals and institutions for people with disabilities today.