THE COMMANDERY OF KNIGHTS TEMPLAR, Chivalric Masonry A Commandery of Knights Templar in the United States confers three Orders: The Illustrious Order of the Red Cross, The Order of Malta, and The Order of the Temple. The Masonic Orders of the Temple and Malta are founded upon the tradition of the Chivalric Orders of Knighthood of the middle ages, and the Rite has therefore acquired the title of Chivalric Masonry. .... The Commandery of Knights Templar is founded upon the Christian Religion and the practice of the Christian virtues. The Orders of Malta and The Temple are entirely based upon the ethical, moral, and spiritual concepts for a well governed life. THE ILLUSTRIOUS ORDER OF THE RED CROSS The first Order conferred by the Commandery is the Illustrious Order of the Red Cross. The theme upon which this Order is based has quasi-biblical roots, for it is based upon an account found in the book of II Esdras in the Apocrapha and in the writings of Josephus. It teaches reliance upon the inherent values of reverence for Deity, Truth, Justice, and Liberty. (Page 51) THE ORDER OF MALTA The ritual of the Order of Malta is purely Christian and, when conferred in full form, is one of the most striking and impressive of the degrees in the York rite system. ... The Commandery of Knights Templar opens a "Priory of Knights of Malta" for the conferral of this Order. The work includes a pass degree termed "Knight of St. Paul, or the Mediterranean Pass." In accordance with the history of the original Knights of Malta, the degree created the candidate a Knight Hospitaler of St. John of Jerusalem, Palestine, Rhodes and Malta. (Page 52) THE ORDER OF THE TEMPLE The third, and last, Order conferred by a Commandery of Knights Templar is "The Order of the Temple." This is considered to be the most impressive and inspiring degree to be found in any Masonic system. The moral and spiritual lessons of Christianity that are communicated in the work leave a lasting impression upon the candidate. It is very important that every Christian Mason complete his Masonic education with this valiant and magnanimous Order, thereby equipping himself to advance the programs and teachings of Christian Masonry. The Order bases its moral and spiritual lesson upon those of medieval chivalry, particularly the Knight of the Temple. While no direct connection with the original Templars can be established, the ritual for this Masonic Order developed in Scotland and England in the 18th century and the degree entered the American colonies in the middle of that century. (Page 53) Excerpted by permission from: The York Rite of Freemasonry A History and Handbook by Frederick G. Speidel, page 51-53 Copyright purchased by Grand Encampment of Knights Templar of the United States of America 1989 5097 Elston Avenue, Suite 101 Chicago, Illinois 60630-2460 Full text copies available from the above address PHILANTHROPIES The Grand Encampment of Knights Templar of the United States of America formed The Knights Templar Eye Foundation. The foundation provides surgery and hospitalization for those who could not otherwise afford the same to restore or retain their sight. The Knights Templar Educational Foundation provides educational loans to needy students in the third or fourth year of an undergraduate program. Consideration is especially directed to those who expect to enter the ministry. The Grand Commandery of Ohio has a Holy Land Pilgrimage program through which money is raised to send several ministers to visit the Holy Land each year.
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