Ancient & Illustrious Orders of the Hospitallers of Jerusalem

PREAMBLE: An Appeal to Those of Nobility

The Common Good Needs Your Sacrifices


True nobility or the concept of the noble man or noble woman, is one that embraces one possessing unequaled social intelligence. A Noble studies history, languages, and human behavior knowing that every interaction is a chance to expand and learn about people and to leave every person and every interaction at a higher, spiritual level. Confidence, manners, and social acumen allows one to find what is special in every person and to relate to them amicably and reward them.


True Hospitallers began in Christianity with that of Saint Fabiola, establishing the first charitable ÔhospitalÕ of record in Rome. When St. Basil of Caesearea visited Egypt in 357 AD, he was so impressed by the Orthodox monastic medical traditions, he established in Cappadocia a charitable hospital some refer to as one of the wonders of the world. Thus, the Eastern Church monastic tradition was born to become a template for the world. 


There is a historic tradition that nobles are directly born from the natural order of the Great Chain of Being. As a result of God-given, enviable qualities, they have a task to fulfill on behalf of the common good. Their very existence and destiny dictates that they should be willing to sacrifice their talents as this Christian duty demands, and to improve the world as GodÕs fulfillment requires. For it would be absurd to imagine that God created the natural order solely to benefit pleasure-seeking people solely for their own benefit while deprivation creates unhappiness and misery for all others.


The natural, God-given Chain of Being, its progress and ÒevolutionÓ are ascensional marches, evolution, and can only occur with the sacrifices ascensions demand—whether of the goods and services of the soul or of the body. To move mankind in an ascensional way requires a painful effort of nobles to which the greater part of bereft humanity is more or less adverse or incapable.


This vast ascensional effort must be accomplished, internationally, regionally, among families, by individuals or small groups especially endowed in nature and grace who desire to improve themselves and their environment so intensely that they become the driving forces of individual improvement and social progress. In a word, they are the yeast, the others the dough.


To imagine that yeast is the bounty of dough because it is distinct, active, because it rises more quickly, because it raises that in which it acts, in short, because it is a driving force and stimulus. To imagine that the dough witnessing itself thus elevated and increased, is to represent progress, evolution, life and dispel on all people the torments of boredom, idleness, and uselessness. These reflections are supported on the teaching of the Divine Master, Who, in explaining the predominant ecclesiastical mission, said: ÒYou are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its savor, with what shall it be salted? It is good for nothing anymore but to be cast out, and to be trodden on by men. You are the light of the world. A city seated on a mountain cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle and put it under a bushel, but upon a candlestick, that it may shine to all that are in the house. So let your light shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heavenÓ (Matt. 5:13-16).


To favor temporal elites who are neither light nor salt, preferring to blend in rather than allow their superiority to shine is to favor the advance of darkness, not light. Evil Flourishes When Good People Do Nothing.


Thus, the Church has awarded the distinction of knighthood since the early medieval period. Such honors originally conferred nobility, personal or hereditary according to military rank, but today the Ecclesiastical Orders are a means by which the Church may personally distinguish those who have particularly served the Church and society. The Ecclesiastical Orders are awarded by diplomas that have been signed by the Grand Master before the Chapter General.


Knights believe in the code of chivalry. They promised to defend the weak, be courteous to all women, be loyal to their king, and serve God at all times. Knights are expected to be humble before others, especially their superiors. There was not an authentic Knights Code of Chivalry as such - it was a moral system which went beyond rules of combat and introduced the concept of Chivalrous conduct - qualities idealized by knighthood, such as bravery, courtesy, honor, and gallantry toward women.

Deacon/Deaconess (S.H.) A commission to counsel and heal others as a "Sanctified Healer." A deacon/deaconess ministry for one to promote health and to care for the sick or infirm.
Priory of Santiago Membership is available to men and women supporting the Order but active in non-medical fields or public service. Membership is honorific and does not require any course of study for admittance.
Priory of St. John Hospitallers One being entrusted with a position of pastoral and teaching functions and duties towards health care. Members are trained in health screening services (Point of Care).
Priory of St. Lazarus Hospitallers One being entrusted with a position of pastoral and teaching functions and duties towards hospice care and chaplaincy.
Priory of Star of Bethlehem Membership in this Priory allows applicants to enroll in our monastic medical astrology courses of special mission. Monastic Medical Astrology was often considered as necessary for physicians as was pathology of the humours in Christendom. Its rich history spreads from to Hippocrates but began with the priests of Chaldea (Church of the East, the first and largest Christian church for several centuries). More modern research on this subject shows great importance beginning in the early 20th century with supporting studies validating its worthiness in today s world for physicians of special intellect and interest.

Priory of Knights of Christ (Templar)

One being entrusted with the sacred texts, in continuous study of Christ, antiquarian research, and pastoral functions.
Knight/Dame of HOPE (K.H.) Our highest honorific title and positiion to those who functions include charity and service to the poor and needy.
Elders One of the governing mentors of the church and/or member of the College of Priests.

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Doctoral Degree with Title of Nobility

NOTE: The Title of Nobility Clause of the U.S. states that no person holding any office of profit or trust under government, shall, without the consent of the Congress, accept of any present, emolument, office, or title, of any kind whatever, from any king, prince, or foreign state. Nobility titles granted by SMOKH are ecclesiastical and honorific.  The bestowing of Honor is in the role of the Grand Master, as he is the supreme Head in spiritual and international matters. The Church of Hope has no military control over territory and only maintains an international spiritual nature which has the historical tradition of giving ecclesiastical honor.