Christ has instructed us to care for the sick, as He did on earth:
"Come, ye blessed of my Father, possess you the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry, and you gave me to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave me to drink; I was a stranger, and you took me in: Naked, and you covered me: sick, and you visited me: I was in prison, and you came to me. Then shall the just answer him, saying: Lord, when did we see thee hungry, and fed thee; thirsty, and gave thee drink? And when did we see thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and covered thee? Or when did we see thee sick or in prison, and came to thee? And the king answering, shall say to them: Amen I say to you, as long as you did it to one of these my least brethren, you did it to me." (Matt. 25: 34-40)
The Knights of Malta have a wonderful medical tradition. The Order was first founded as a hospitaller organization to care for pilgrims visiting the Holy Land in 1048 A.D. The health care training and work of the Order has continued for nearly 1,000 years. Many of our members are registered nurses, medical doctors, social workers, and professionals of the ancillary services required by the practice of medicine in the modern world. We encourage every member of the Order who is not already engaged in the field, or retired from its service, to become certified members of the health care professions. If already trained and employed in another field, members must become active in one of the other aspects of the Mission of the Order. Basic certification in CPR and training in First Aid is a requirement of all our members. Those not engaged in the health care fields must renew this certification every 5 years.