Nearly 4,000 Knights and Dames from all over the world travel to Lourdes every year to learn firsthand what the Order of Malta stands for - devotion to the faith, service to the sick, and fellowship. Dressed in distinctive uniforms and ministering to the sick and disabled (referred to as “Malades” in French), the members of the Order form an international community of faith and service.

Over 350 pilgrims from the Western Association participate in the pilgrimage each May. This includes around 50 men, women, and children who are seriously ill and invited by the Western Association to make the pilgrimage free of charge.