Who are the Knights Templar?

The  Knights Templar is a Christian-oriented fraternal organization that is  based on the history and mythos surrounding the medieval crusading order  of  warrior monks, known as the Knights Templar, which existed from the  12th to the 14th century. Originally, the Knights Templar were laymen  who protected and defended Christians traveling to Jerusalem. These men  took vows of poverty, chastity and obedience, and were renowned for  their fierceness and courage in battle. Today, the Knights Templar  display their courage and goodwill in other ways. They organize  fund-raising activities such as breakfasts, dinners, dances, and flea  markets. They support Masonic-related youth groups and they raise  millions of dollars for medical research and educational assistance.


Currently,  Templar membership consists of people from all walks of life, including  doctors, lawyers, clergy, businessmen and entertainment personalities,  all of whom profess a belief in the Christian Religion.


The  Knights Templar operate on a local, state and national level. But their  religious activities extend across international borders as well.  Nationally, there is The Grand Encampment of Knights Templar.  This unit defines the rituals and laws governing state and local level  organizations. The state level is called A Grand Commandery of Knights  Templar. This organization represents members of a state or an area of  equivalent size.  Finally, the local level unit is called a Commandery  of Knights Templar. There are almost 1,600 Commanderies in communities  across the United States, Germany, Italy and Mexico, with over 260,000  members. 


The Chivalric Orders of Christian Knighthood consists of three degrees:

The Illustrious Order of the Red Cross, The Order of Knight of Malta, and The Order of the Temple.


The Illustrious Order of the Red Cross emphasizes the lesson of truth.  Elements of this Order were practiced  in Ancient Lodges before the final form of the Master Mason Degree came  into use.  it is still practiced in the full ceremonial form by  the Knight Masons of Ireland and the Knight Masons of the United States,  and as the Red Cross of Babylon in the English Order of the Allied  Masonic Degrees.


The Order of Knight of Malta emphasizes the lees son of faith. This Order requires the Mason to  profess and practice the Christian faith. The pass degree of the  Mediterranean Pass, or Knight of St. Paul prepares the candidate for the  Order by introducing the lesson and example of the unfearing and  faithful martyr of Christianity. The Order is centered on allegorical  elements of the Knights of Malta, inheritors of the medieval Knights  Hospitaller.


The Order of the Temple is the crowning glory of York Rite Masonry. It is widely regarded as  the most solemn and impressive experience in Masonry. Here the aspirant  progresses in the footsteps of Jesus of Nazareth. At the empty tomb  grows a sprig of acacia, teaching that we shall dwell forever in the  realms of life and light eternal.


Freemasonry  demands only a belief in a monotheistic God, where Hindu, Muslim, Jew  and Gentile may together worship around its alters. The Christian  Freemason alone has at his disposal a branch of the fraternity where he  is free to interpret the teachings of the Symbolic Lodge according to  his religious belief. The Masonic Orders of Christian Knighthood are the  logical outcome of the Christian Mason's belief in Christ as the Lion  of the Tribe of Judah. That Mason believes Christ's hand will raise the  dead to life, and in His Holy Name the True Word is found and restored  at last. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and  the Word was God”.