Matthew Festing

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Person.png Matthew Festing  Rdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
(Spook, Knight-Monk)
Matthew Festing.jpg
Born30 November 1949
Northumberland, United Kingdom
Died12 November 2021 (Age 71)
Alma materAmpleforth College
ReligionRoman Catholicism
Member ofKnights of Malta
The 79th Prince and Grand Master of the Order of Malta, and the only one to have stepped down.

Employment.png Prince and Grand Master of the Order of Malta Wikipedia-icon.png

In office
11 March 2008 - 28 January 2017
Preceded byAndrew Bertie

Matthew Festing was Prince and Grand Master of the Order of Malta, traditionally a lifetime appointment. However, after being pressured in person by Pope Francis, on 28 January 2017 he stepped down, a rarity in the group's 900 year history. No reasons were given for the pope's request, although "many understood it to be linked to Festing's actions in December, when he suspended [Albrecht] von Boeselager for involvement in a condom distribution scandal involving Malteser International, the Order's charitable arm von Boeselager oversaw."[1]


A Document by Matthew Festing

TitleDocument typePublication dateSubject(s)Description
Document:Suspension of Albrecht Boeselagerdecree9 December 2016Knights of Malta
Albrecht Freiherr von Boeselager
A leaked official decree of the Knights of Malta signed by Grand Master Festing. It was a "precautionary" suspension of von Boeselager caused by the latter's duplicity in various matters, including the Swiss trust, but primarily his complicity with and cover-up of Malteser International's practices contrary to Church teaching. The suspension was later annulled with the help of von Boeselager's Vatican cronies, and Festing was forced to resign by Pope Francis.


Related Documents

TitleTypePublication dateAuthor(s)Description
Document:2017 Report into Malteser InternationalreportJanuary 2016The Weir CommissionA leaked official Knights of Malta report by an independent commission of experts looking into questionable activities of the Knights' main German-based medical and emergency relief service operating worldwide under the name Malteser International. It shows conclusively that Malteser has consistently violated Catholic teaching, under the responsbility of Albrecht Freiherr von Boeselager during his long tenure as Grand Hospitaller.
Document:Alternate Timeline events December 2016-January 2017timeline2017UnknownDocument detailing the unfolding crisis from early December 2016 until end January 2017, with an emphasis on facts the "official version" has deliberately tried to hide or obscure.
Document:December 2016 Papal Letterletter6 December 2016Cardinal Raymond Burke
Jorge Mario Bergoglio
A leaked "strictly confidential" set of two letters: one from Pope Francis (in Italian & English) to Knights of Malta Cardinal Patron Raymond Burke, who has added his own covering letter addressed to Grand Master Festing. Pope Francis appears to demand that Freemasonry ("relativist" groups contrary to the Catholic faith) be rooted out of the Knights, and that those complicit (e.g., von Boeselager) in practices contrary to Church teaching be dealt with.