As an ecumenical Christian Order of Chivalry, membership of the Order of Saint Lazarus is by invitation only to both men and women who are practising and committed Christians; are of good character and standing in their community and who have a wish to see the alleviation of the suffering of mankind. This invitation usually comes from one of our active members, and often from the leadership at the national or regional level.
Interested prospective members are asked to provide a personal ‘curriculum vitae’ and have a favourable personal interview with at least two Knights or Dames of the Order. Those who still wish to continue will then complete detailed application forms, which are then vetted by the Membership Council of the respective national jurisdiction.
Should the applicant win approval, both by the proper jurisdiction Council, and subsequently by the Grand Magistry and the Grand Master, the applicant is then invited to join the order as a postulant, and will be invested (typically) at the grade of Officer (post nominal ‘OLJ’) in due course.
As a Christian Order of Chivalry, some written evidence will be sought of an applicant’s Christian commitment. Applicants are required to provide a Baptismal or Confirmation certificate plus a confirming letter from the candidate’s priest or church attesting to the candidate’s active participation in both the Church and in the Christian Faith.
The Order’s central purpose is, and historically has been, its strong dedication to charitable works. Members will be required to donate both time and money to the Order’s works.
Fees and Dues:
Besides the annual oblation to the member’s Jurisdiction, additional costs can include charity assessments voted by the membership of local sub-jurisdictions in support of local charities, national dues assessed annually for the administration of the Order and the optional cost of attending functions at local, national and international events. Additionally, there are one-time ‘passage’ and insignia fees assessed for postulants being invested into the Order and for Members achieving promotion. Other cost implications arise when a member might decide to acquire Order uniform, although this is optional, the Order’s mantle (or cape) is expected of each member.
Regarding attendance at meetings, members are expected to attend at least one meeting each year. This can be a local, national or international event. Many of our members attend multiple events annually and they see the active social calendar of the Order as an enjoyable benefit of belonging to a prestigious, ancient and noble Order.
It should be noted that the Order of Saint Lazarus is truly noble in that 100% of all it’s donations go to the designated charity. Most of the Order’s administration is accomplished by its Members who volunteer their time, skills and resources all in the spirit of preserving the Order’s money for its charitable aims and obligations. Thus, support for the work of the Order freely given, is an act of charity in itself.
As a military Order, there is a rank structure that conforms with European chivalric custom and decorations (medals) to note service or achievement. All promotions require approval of the Grand Master. Promotions are won by achievement. This means that active, involved Members enjoy promotions up through the ranks, with the ultimate achievement of the rank of Knight or Dame as an honour, bestowed by the Order upon those who selflessly serve Christendom. Besides promotions, members may also be decorated for achievement or merit.
There are non-Christians, especially those of the Jewish and Moslem faiths, who support the aims and good works of the Order. Such members may be granted associated membership and even promotion through the ranks of merit that parallel the active rank structure of the Order, in conformance with European chivalric custom and tradition. It should be noted here that the Order’s clinics and hospitals are open to all, without question or reservation, in the spirit of Christian charity.
Membership in the Order is truly a lifelong commitment, and should not be taken lightly. We are a working Order and we have many things to accomplish. If you are interested in taking up the Cross of Saint Lazarus, the Constitution of the Order requires that you join through your own national Jurisdiction; that is, a Scottish resident or citizen should join the order through the Scottish Bailiwick. Members not resident in their home countries should still join through their home Jurisdictions.
Content : copyright 2016 Military & Hospitaller Order of St. Lazarus of Jerusalem, Grand Bailiwick of Scotland. All rights reserved.
Design: copyright 2016 David Waterton-Anderson. All rights reserved.
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