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INTRODUCTION

 

 

 

The Military and Hospitaller Order of Saint Lazarus is one of the orders of chivalry to survive the downfall of the Kingdom of Jerusalem and the attempts by the Crusader knights to win control of the Holy Land from the forces of Islam. In theory the Order remained a military one, but with the exception of a brief period in the 17th century it played no military role after 1291. The Order of Saint Lazarus is one of the most ancient of the European orders of chivalry. At the very least it dates back to the time of the Crusader knights. From its foundation in the 12th century, the members of the Order were dedicated to two ideals: aid to those suffering from the dreadful disease of leprosy and the defense of the Christian faith.

Today the Military and Hospitaller Order of Saint Lazarus of Jerusalem is an international self-governing and independent body, having its own Constitution; it may be compared with a kind of electoral kingdom. According to the said Constitution the Order is nonpolitical, oecumenical or nondenominational, as its membership is open to all men and women being practicing members of the Christian faith in good standing within their particular denomination. Its international membership consists of Roman-catholic, Anglican, Protestant, Orthodox, United, Old Catholic, New Apostolic and other Christians, upholding with their lives, fortunes and honour the principles of Christianity. Traditionally it is organized as a Christian Chivalric Order. The Order is registered in London in accordance with the laws in England.

It is both a Military Order of Mercy and a Hospitaller Order dedicated to the care and assistance of the poor and the sick. Its aim is to preserve and defend the Christian faith, to guard, assist succor and help the poor, the sick and dying, to promote and maintain the principles of Christian chivalry and to follow the teachings of Christ and His Holy Church in all its works.

With the exception of the present Teutonic Order ("Deutscher Orden") the Order of Saint Lazarus is today the smallest of the orders of Christian chivalry. It is made up of approximately five thousand members in the five continents. The Order sees itself as an oecumenical Christian order whose genesis goes back to the Holy Land, to the crusades and to the Kingdom of Jerusalem.

HISTORY

 

 

 

 

The Order of Saint Lazarus, like the other orders born in the Holy Land during the Crusades, had a turbulent and honorable beginning, a brief but very useful role in exterminating leprosy in Europe during the middle ages, another brief naval period when it served with distinction attacking pirates in the Mediterranean during the seventeenth century, after which it became an honorific distinction bestowed by the King of France.
Gerard de Martigues, a Provençal, later known as the "Blessed Gerard," founded the Order of Saint John and was director of the Hospital of Notre Dame in the Holy City sometime before the Crusaders conquered Jerusalem in 1099. At first, Gerard directed the Hospital under the authority of the Abbot of St. Mary. Later he and his companions left and created a special congregation, adopted a Rule, took vows and were accredited by the Popes. The first bull in their favor is dated 15 February 1113 and refers to "Gerard, Founder and Governor of the Hospital at Jerusalem and his Legitimate Successors".

Godfrey de Bouillon, uncrowned "king" of Jerusalem was so impressed with the dedication of Gerard and his companions towards the sick and the wounded that he supported and gave them funds and facilities. Some believe that the Order of Saint Lazarus took on a separate identity in 1120 when Boyand Roger, Rector of the Hospital of Jerusalem was elected Master of the Hospitalers of Saint Lazarus. Those suffering from the "living death" of leprosy regarded Lazarus (Luke 16:19-31) as their patron saint and usually dedicated their hospices to him. The first written reference we have to Saint Lazarus as a "knightly" order is a letter written by Henry II, King of England and Duke of Normandy, dated 1159, in which he makes a large donation to it, and refers to the "Knights and Brethren of Saint Lazarus".

Five major orders were formed in the Holy Land in the late 11th-early 12th century: the Knights Templar, Knights Hospitaller (St. John), Knights of the Holy Sepulchre, Knights of the Hospital of St. Mary of Jerusalem (Teutonic Knights) and Knights of Saint Lazarus. Templar knights who contracted leprosy were sent to the care of the Order of Saint Lazarus. These knights trained the brethren of Saint Lazarus in the military arts and were responsible for transforming the Order into a military one. Gerard (v.s.) became director of the new leper hospital and appointed Boyand Roger as director and Master of Saint Lazarus. William, Archbishop of Tyre, as well as other historians of the period, appeared unaware of the difference between the Orders of Saint Lazarus and Saint John and lumped them together, referring to them in their accounts only as "Hospitalers". By 1256 the Order of Saint Lazarus had grown considerably and its existence was recognized by Pope Alexander IV under the Rule of St. Augustine. It acquired a church, a convent and a mill in Jerusalem and property near the Mount of Olives. It built a chapel at Tiberias and two hospitals for pilgrims in Armenia. It acquired more establishments at Nablus, Ascalon and Cæsarea.

In 1187 Saladin invaded and reconquered the Holy Land. The Order lost its main hospital and convent, and a contingent of knights perished in the loss of Jerusalem. In 1191 Richard coeur de lion defeated Saladin at Azoof and recaptured Jaffa. He and Saladin made a treaty by which the sea coast from Tyre to Jaffa remained in the possession of the Crusaders, and Christians were allowed full liberty to visit the Holy Sepulchre. The Order relocated to Acre, built a hospital, convent and church, and carried on with its hospitaller functions. It secured sovereign rights over a portion of the city on territory ceded to it by the Templars, and Pope Urban IV confirmed its privileges in 1264. They were mentioned as being present at the battle of Gaza in 1244 and at the final siege in 1291 when Acre fell to the greatly superior Mameluke forces. The Christian knights present in Acre perished, as did Christian hopes in the East. The green cross of Saint Lazarus disappeared from the Holy Land after two hundred years. It moved to Cyprus, then Sicily, then returned to its headquarters at Boigny near Orléans in France. The property at Boigny was given to it by King Louis VII in 1154 and erected as a barony in 1288. Many knights who had become used to the Mediterranean climate decided not to return to France and went no farther than Sicily, where they established themselves on properties given to them by the Germanic Roman Emperor Frederick von Hohenstauffen. Their headquarters was in Capua, on the Iralian mainland These expatriates eventually became a completely separate branch of the Order under Papal jurisdiction when in 1489 Pope Innocent VIII fulminated a bull giving the properties of the Orders of Saint Lazarus and of the Holy Sepulchre to the Order of St. John, in effect dissolving the two. The branch of Saint Lazarus at Boigny refused to recognize the validity of the bull.

By the early sixteenth century the Order was moribund. Leprosy had been virtually eliminated in Europe. The Crusades were over, and in Papal eyes there was very little to justify the continued existence of Saint Lazarus. Though the knights of Saint Lazarus at Boigny continued to function as an order, as far as the Pope was concerned, the Order in France had ceased to exist. The properties of the Sicilian branch had been transferred by the Pope to the Savoyan Order of Saint Maurice, which became the Order of Saints Maurice and Lazarus. Originally created as a military order whose mission was to protect the Papal States' shoreline from the Barbary pirates, it soon became nothing more than a distinction of the House of Savoy and after the unification of Italy, a state order along with that of the Crown of Italy. Following the Second World War, King Umberto exercised from his exile in Portugal his right of fons honorum and proffered these Savoian orders to many of his deserving friends. His son, Prince Victor Emanuel, continues to award the order.
On 25 July 1593, King Henry of Navarre abjured the Protestant faith in order to accede to the French throne as Henri IV. In 1608, two years before his assassination, he created with the blessing of Pope Paul V the Order of Our Lady of Mount Carmel and named Philibert, Marquis de Nerestang, Grand Master of Saint Lazarus, Grand Master of the new order. He in effect amalgamated the two orders, which then became known as the Order of Our Lady of Mount Carmel and Saint Lazarus. The insignia of the new order was an eight-pointed Maltese cross bearing fleurs de lys in the angles and quartered of the colors of both orders (purple and green) bearing on the obverse a representation of Our Lady and on the reverse of Saint Lazarus..
There is a good deal of controversy as to the King's reasons for founding this new order and then joining it to Saint Lazarus. Some historians see it as a move to prove to the Pope that he was now a good Catholic fulfilling the vows he took to create institutions to glorify the Church and the Faith when he abjured Protestantism, .Others hold that the King was being wily and his only desire was to prevent the considerable properties of a moribund Saint Lazarus from falling into the hands of the Hospitallers of Saint John and, in effect to revive Saint Lazarus (which was dissolved by Pope Innocent VIII in 1489). Since over the years he had made several efforts to have the Pope annul the 1489 bull, it is reasonable to assume that the truth lies somewhere in between. Historians of the Order claim that, although they owed allegiance to a common grand master, neither order lost its sovereign identity.

In theory the Order was military, but with the exception of a brief period in the XVIIth century when it manned ten naval frigates it played no military role after it left the Holy Land. It was composed of diplomats, high-level civil servants and members of the titled nobility and was limited to 100 knights. The King was the sovereign head and protector and chose the Grand Master. The Grand Master, however, was only recognized by the Pope as Grand Master of the Order of Our Lady of Mount Carmel and not of Saint Lazarus. During the reign of Louis XVI the Order of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, not the combined orders, was awarded to the top three students of the Royal Military School. The orders were separate though they shared the same Grand Master. Although the Order enjoyed a unique relationship with the French Royal House and was officially under the protection of the King of France, it was never a Royal Order. The King's titles as Sovereign, Founder and Protector meant that he was Sovereign and Founder of Our Lady of Mount Carmel and Protector of Saint Lazarus.

During the French Revolution. a decree of 30 July 1791 suppressed all royal and knightly orders. Another decree the following year confiscated all the Order's properties (the Château de Boigny, the Military Academy, the commanderies and hospitals). Louis, Count of Provence, Grand Master of the Order, who later became Louis XVIII, continued to function in exile and awarded the Order, though sparingly. Supporters point out that while in exile in the Latvian province of Mittau he awarded the Order to Tsars Paul I and Alexander I of Russia, Grand Duke Constantine of Russia, Count Rostopchine and General de Fersen... They maintain that he even created an hereditary commandery in Sweden for Chev. Olof Nilson which is still in existence. When the Count of Provence returned to France from exile to reign as Louis XVIII, he gave up the magistracy of the Order and became Protector, as had his predecessors, but appointed no grand master.
Shortly after Louis acceded to the throne in 1814, Napoleon escaped from Elba and returned to France, forcing the King to leave Paris again to seek refuge in Ghent. During this period and after he returned to France, circumstances did not permit the King to summon a Chapter General to elect a Grand Master. The Order was governed by a Lieutenant-General, the Duc de Châtre, assisted by M. Silvestre, the Herald, M. Dacier, the historiographer, and Father Picot, a chaplain from Versailles.

King Louis XVIII, the Protector, and the Duc de Châtre both died in 1824. King Charles X succeeded his brother and took the title of Protector, and left the Order to be governed by a Council of Officers, headed by the marquis d'Autichamps, and the Council of (hereditary) Commanders. Recruitment slowly resumed and promotions were made. In 1830 Charles X abdicated, and with his de jure successor, the young Duc de Bordeaux, who reigned from 2 to 7 August 1830 as Henri V, went into exile. King Henri V was the last de jure royal Protector of the Order. The Order did not enjoy the protection of the new king and was not listed thereafter in the royal Almanac. From 1830 the Order of Saint Lazarus was governed by a Council of Officers. The knights and hospitallers of the Order felt it was necessary for the Order to have a Protector. Patriarch Maximos III Malzoum had for years been acquainted with the Order of St Lazarus. In 1821-23, whilst Archbishop of Myra, he spent three years living in France, where, with the support of King Louis XVIII, he founded the Greek Catholic church of Our Lady of Myra. While living in Paris he brought the sufferings of Eastern Catholics to the attention of Louis XVIII and other members of the Order of Saint Lazarus.

Now Patriarch since 1833, Maximos III Malzoum came to France again in 1841, after visiting Pope Gregory XVI in Rome. The Knights and Hospitallers of the Order of St Lazarus made contact with the Patriarch during his second sojourn in Paris and asked him to be the Spiritual Protector of the Order. He accepted for himself and for his successors. The knights and hospitallers of the Order of St Lazarus, now confident that their traditions would be maintained, continued their charitable work, especially for the benefit of Christians in the East. Under the spiritual authority of the Greek Catholic Patriarch, there was cautious recruitment to the Order, so that by 1850 it numbered some twenty knights. Among the Eastern prelates appointed to the Order were, notably, the Greek Catholic Archbishops Clement of Beirut (who became Patriarch in 1856), Msgr. Agapi Dumani (appointed in 1864) and Msgr. Antoine Sabbagh (appointed in 1871). In the West, recruitment of new members was restricted by the Patriarch's position vis-à-vis the Ottoman Empire. Knights appointed up to the end of the 19th century included (in 1853) Admiral Alphonse Hamelin, who commanded the Black Sea squadron during the Crimean War, became Minister for the Navy and was Grand Chancellor of the Legion of Honour when he died in 1860. In the same year, Admiral Louis Edouard BouëtWillaumez, who became an Imperial Senator and died in 1871; in 1863: Comte Louis François du Mesnil de Maricourt, who became French Consul at Larnaca in Cyprus and died in 1865 while ministering to cholera victims; Comte Paul de Poudenx, who died in 1894; the Rev Abbé Jean Tanski, who came to France after taking part in the Polish uprising, lived at Paris (where he was attached to the parish of Sainte Marie-des-Batignolles), later became Almoner of the Order, contributed to its maintenance and died in 1913; in 1865: Comte Jules Marie d'Anselme de Puisaye, a zouave in the Papal armies; the Vicomte de Boisbaudry in 1875; Baron Yves de Constancin in 1896, who was later to become commander of the Hospitaller Nobles of St Lazarus, a knight of the Order of Isabella the Catholic and of Saint Anne of Russia. A man of letters, he founded the Association of Parliamentary Journalists and was the director of the Revue Internationale, dying in 1914. In 1880, Comte Jules Marie d'Anselme de Puisaye, a Hospitaller Knight of St Lazarus, living at the time in Tunisia and desirous of involving the Order in a charitable and hospitaller project, founded in Tunis the Association de Ia Croix Verte, a society for aid to the injured and sick.

In 1902, the Greek Melkite Archbishop of Saint-Jean-d'Acre, Msgr. Cyrille Ghea, a member of the Order, became Patriarch Cyril VIII. Under his aegis, new members joined the Order, among them Msgr. Gregoire Haggear, his successor as Melkite Archbishop of Saint- Jean-d'Acre, Paul Watrin, Paul Beugnot, Charles Otzenberger, Jean-Paul Eyscher, Alexandre Gallery de la Tremblaye, Jean Georges de Guillet de Pardes de Fleurelles.

In 1910, the Patriarch, on Canon Tanski's advice, decided to re- establish the Order's Chancellery in France, its historic seat. A council of the Order was appointed: Paul Watrin, an advocate at the Appeal Court in Paris, was appointed Chancellor; Paul Beugnot as the Judge of Arms and Canon Tanski as Chaplain. After this reorganisation Patriarch Cyril VIII wrote a long letter, dated 3 June 1911 from Damascus, to the Chancellor, in which he discussed the role of the Eastern Church in which the Order was interested, and concluded:"Finally, as a pledge of our recognition and affection, we gran.t our blessing to all the Order.

There is some confusion about the name the Order gave itself at that time. Guy Coutant de Saisseval, Grand Chancellor of the Paris Obedience, stated that it was the "Nobiliary Association of the Knights of Saint Lazarus of Jerusalem". The late Paul Bertrand de La Grassière, the Order's modern historian, on the other hand, wrote in 1932, that it never took on that title but was called "Order of Noble Knights of Saint Lazarus of Jerusalem and our Lady of Mercy."
After the First World War erupted in 1914, new upheavals battered the institution of Saint Lazarus. In the Near East, the Turkish Government massacred Christians, sentenced bishops to imprisonment and sentenced Patriarch Cyril VIJI to death because of his opposition to the Ottoman government. He evaded death by escaping to Egypt, where he died at Ramleh on 11 January 1916.

When the Ottoman Empire was defeated, Demetrios I Cadi was elected Patriarch on 29 March 1919, and became the new Spiritual Protector of the Order of St Lazarus. Under his protectorate, recruitment resumed, Canon Pierracini became Chaplain of the Order and the marquis de l'Église de Férier de Félix became Judge of Arms. The Patriarch died on 25 October 1925, and Cyril IX Mogabgab was elected Patriarch 8 December 1925. He was a great Francophile and a Commander of the Legion of Honour. The Order developed under his spiritual protection, and on 17 March 1926, the Patriarch wrote a lengthy letter ferom Beirut to the members of the Order, in which he said:"The work of the recruitment of priests and their support in poverty-stricken villages.., accomplished by my beloved hospitaller sons of St Lazarus of Jerusalem, is a work of essentially missionary character and worthy of their traditions. God will assuredly reward them a hundredfold, for they shall have the merit of saving thousands of souls for God. In especially commending all these endeavours to you, I send to you and to all your confrères in the Order my paternal benediction...

On 10 June 1926, Msgr. Attié, the Melkite Patriarch's archimandrite and rector of the Church of Saint Julian the Poor in Paris, was installed as Chaplain of the Order. Recruitment intensified over the next two years. The year 1927 saw the official constitution under French law of the Association Française des Hospitaliers de Saint-Lazare, which then took the name of Association Française des Chevaliers de Saint-Lazare and which is now the Hospitaliers de Saint-Lazare de Jerusalem. The marquis de l'Église de Férier de Felix became its president. In the same year,
In 1929 the Order continued its onward progress. More than fifty people, French and foreign, joined its ranks, among whom were Cardinal Lienart, Bishop of Lille, Cardinal Hayes, Archbishop of New York; Msgr Dub. Dubowski, Bishop of Luck and Zytornec, General de Castelnau, Admiral Lacaze, General Weygand, don Francisco de Borbón y de Borbón, the Duc de Clermont-Tonnerre, the marquis de Migré, the marquis de Bellevue and Colonel Raoul Hospital. This period also saw increased recruitment outside France, notably in Spaln and Poland.

In the same year, the Order published an edition of its Rules and Statutes, which recapitulated the Order's ancient customs whilst adapting them to modern times and relying upon the basis of the Fundamental Statute of the Knights and Hospitallers which had been drawn up in 1841 at the time of the resumption of the links between the Knights and Hospitallers and the Melkite Patriarchate; articles on the Hospitallers of St Lazarus were published in various journals and conferences were held on the subject.

The expansion of the Order in Europe was so successful that it decided to explore the possibilities in the New World. Here again the Order thrived; among those received were no less than four American Cardinals and one Bishop, who accepted the Order's Ecclesiastical Grand Cross. A former Chief Justice on New York's Supreme Court was awarded its Grand Cross. We know that the Presidents of the Dominican Republic, Haiti and Brazil were honored by, and officially recognized, the Order.

In 1930 officers of the Order asked don Francisco de Borbón y de Ia Torre, Duke of Seville, Grand Bailiff of the Order for Spain, to assume the governance of the Order, with the title of Lieutenant-General of the Grand Magistracy. The Duke, a direct descendant of the kings of Spain and France, who distinguished himself on the field of battle during the Spanish Civil War and was known as the "Hero of Malaga," accepted the office. He worked for the revitalization of the Order by rallying the knights to its traditional double mission: aid to lepers and collaboration in the defense of the Christian Faith. By a unanimous vote in 1935 he was elected Grand Master, re-establishing the office, vacant since 1814.

After the Second World War the Order's expansion reached its zenith. Membership grew as did its charitable missions. The Duke of Seville melded some of the Order's ancient traditions with modern reforms with evident success. The Order, wishing to revert to its original mission, became actively involved in the care of lepers in Spain. In 1952 the Duke of Seville died. His son and co-adjutor, don Francisco Enrique de Borbón y de Borbón, was named Lieutenant General of the Grand Magistracy and elected Grand Master six years later. Because he was a serving officer in the Spanish army and resided in Spain, he was unable to devote himself fully to the Order. In 1956, he appointed Pierre Timoléon de Cossé-Brissac, twelth Duke of Brissac, a member since 1954, Administrator General of the Order. This move eventually resulted in new fragmentation of the Order.

The French administration complained that Lt. Colonel don Francisco Enrique de Borbón y de Borbón, the Grand Master, was increasingly tied up by his military and personal obligations and was unable to fulfill his commitments, and that a de facto vacancy existed in the grand magistracy.
Don Francisco immediately issued decrees annulling the appointments of the Duc de Brissac as Administrator-General and the other members of the Paris administration and reassumed the grand magistracy. The Parisians paid no attention to the decrees. They convened the membership in a Chapter General to depose Don Francisco and elected H.R.H. Prince Charles Phillip of Orleans, Duc de Nemours, Duc de Vendôme, Duc d'Alençon and First Prince of the Blood of France, as Grand Master. They easily accomplished their aims and created the second scission in the Order at the negligible cost of losing the Spanish jurisdiction which understandably remained loyal to don Francisco. Thus there were now two Grand Masters, the Duc de Nemours in Paris and don Francisco in Madrid, who, as a consolation prize was named Grand Master Emeritus of the Order and Grand Prior of the Spanish Grand Priory by the members in Paris. The Supreme Council re-established the Grand Magistracy at Boigny, returning it to the status it held for 500 years before the French Revolution. Lt. Col. Robert Gayre of Gayre and Nigg was given responsibility for propagation of the Order in Britain and the Americas.

The Duc de Nemours was educated in England and an ardent anglophile. He married Miss Margaret Watson, an American lady from Virginia, and the couple spoke English at home. It was only natural that he and Gayre, the Commissioner-General for the English-speaking world, would soon become fast friends. This was resented by the Administrator General of the Order and his entourage, and forebode another storm. The Duc de Nemours appointed Col. Gayre Grand Referendary of the Order to replace the deceased marquis de Cardenas de Montehermoso, which provoked the wrath of Brissac and his staff. This was tantamount to turning over the control of the Order to Gayre, which was totally unacceptable to Paris.

The Duc de Brissac once again convened a Chapter-General and deposed the Duc de Nemours. This time the move was much more costly because Gayre, who had been active in recruiting in the English-speaking countries, took with him more than half of the Order's membership, with the exception of Canada. The members in Paris appointed the Duc de Brissac Supreme Head of the Order, without naming him Grand Master.

Gayre and the Duc de Nemours moved their faction's headquarters to the island of Malta and the appointed the Grand Master's nephew, Prince Michael of France, co-adjutor with right of succession to the Grand Magistracy. Gayre continued to travel and recruit extensively
The Duc de Nemours died suddenly in Paris in 1970 and the group on Malta found itself without a Grand Master. Prince Michael of France, the co-adjutor temporarily assumed the duties until a permanent replacement could be found. It was not long before Gayre decided to call upon don Francisco de Borbón in Madrid and propose to him that he return to the head of the largest faction in the Order. Don Francisco would be Grand Master, his seat would be in Madrid and he would have direct control over the Spanish jurisdiction. This was the fourth scission but it resulted in the Order's being reduced to two obediences, one known as the Paris obedience and the other, for convenience's sake called the Malta obedience because the Order's Grand Chancellory was situated there, and because Gayre maintained a residence on the island.

Maintaining a Grand Magistery in one country and a headquarters in another was bound to bring on problems, especially when the lines of communication between the Chancery and the Grand Magistery were hampered by the lack of a common language. In this case the Grand Master spoke only Spanish and French and Gayre spoke only English. Admittedly the Grand Chancellor, Amato Gauci, did have an assistant who was familiar with Spanish, but the latter's duties as a Maltese civil servant left him little time for the affairs of the Grand Chancellory. While there were no official contacts betweeen the two obediences during this period, members of the rank and file of each made efforts to convince their leaderships that the Order be reunified, if for no other reason than to better be able to withstand the attacks against the divided Saint Lazarus made by that segment of the European press which covered the activities of the European nobility, and others who specialized in heraldry and genealogy. Tentative contacts between members of each obedience were made, and it looked as if each leadership was coming around to the general principle of a reunification. The Canadians who had gone over to the Paris side and those Canadians who remained loyal to don Francisco decided to set an example and joined forces, pledging allegiance temporarily to a commonly elected Grand Prior of Canada. The Americans, who had been urging a reunification for some time, helped to arbitrate and welcomed this first step.

Dissatisfaction arose over the administration of the Order in Spain. Gayre, because he had delegated authority to the Grand Chancellor, Amato Gauci, and his assistant, was unable to control matters. The Grand Chancellor was perfectly aware of what was happening in the Grand Magistracy but, personally loyal to Don Francisco, did not see fit to influence him. Gayre, realizing his own lack of control decided that the problem required radical action and vowed to jettison the Grand Master and rejoin the Paris Obedience.

His Beatitude Georges Hakim, MAXIMOS V, Melkite Patriarch of Jerusalem, Alexandria and Antioch and All the East, the Spiritual Protector, agreed to head a reunification committee to which don Francisco refused to name members, sensing a coup. Preliminary meetings took place at Philadelphia, Paris and London, to which Malta sent "observers." These deliberations resulted in a meeting in Washington in 1984 which was attended by the marquis de Brissac, representing his father, the Grand Master of the Paris Obedience, and don Francisco de Borbón y de Borbón, representing Malta. A declaration of intent to unify was drawn up at Washington which provided for both grand masters to step down and become "Grand Masters Emeriti" so that an election could be held to select a grand master for a unified Order. The representatives of Paris signed the declaration, don Francisco refused to sign, saying he had to consult his advisers and constituents on return to Madrid.

The Patriarch called for a chapter general at Oxford in 1986, which don Francisco refused to attend and ordered his followers to boycott. The Duc de Brissac gave up the reins of his obedience to his son, the marquis de Brissac, who was one of the three nominees at the Oxford election. The Malta Grand Master and the Prince zur Lippe were the others. The marquis won handily and was acclaimed as the 48th Grand Master by an overjoyed assemblage, who thought they had at last healed the breach.

The Malta Grand Master refused to acknowledge the validity of the election and resolved to carry on as before. Instead of a reunification, a realignment occurred. The Paris obedience acquired the largest (more than 500 members) and richest of the Order's jurisdictions, that of the United States, as well those of England, Lochore (Gayre's personal jurisdiction), Holland, and several others. Germany, Austria, Italy and Hungary remained divided.

After the failed attempt at reunion, tempers flared at first, but as they gradually cooled down, members of good will on both sides made new overtures. The members in the U.S. belonging to the Malta Obedience are incorporated in Paris Obedience Grand Priory of America for administrative purposes. A member of the "Commandery of Malta" thus created is the Hospitaller of the American Grand Priory. Name calling and threats of legal action have virtually ceased, and both divisions have turned to their charitable efforts which both feel must be significant in order to justify their claim to be a Order of Chivalry

SUMMARY

The Order of Saint Lazarus is an cumenical organization of Christian hospitallers whose spirit goes back to the Holy Land and the Crusades. The United looks to His Beatitude Gregory III, Greek Melkite Catholic Patriarch of Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem and all the East, for spiritual support as the constitutional Spiritual Protector.

With the exception of the Teutonic Order, the Order of Saint Lazarus is the smallest of the orders so far mentioned. Its membership numbers approximately 7000 members in Grand Priories, Priories, Commanderies and Delegations in the five continents. The Order's traditional humanitarian activities are in the field of leprosy. It maintains leprosaria and dispensaries and sends medical supplies to various medical missions in Africa, and in the Pacific islands. A recent thrust of the American Grand Priory is the support of organ donation, led by its Hospitaller, the Deputy Surgeon General of the US. The Order is also involved in geriatric care for the needy, it operates several Volunteer Ambulance Corps including one for young drug addicts and directly supports a medical and religious mission in Kenya. Among the more noteworthy projects undertaken by the Order has been the weekly transport of basic food and medical supplies to Poland, Russia, Jugoslavia, Macedonia, Kosovo and the Asia Relief Project after the Tsunami disaster in Indonesia on the isle of Nias.

There are two categories of membership in the Order: Justice, for individuals able to submit nobiliary proofs, and Magistral Grace for those unable to do so. Christians may be admitted in the following grades: Member, Officer, Commander, Knight or Dame, Knight or Dame Commander, Knight or Dame Grand Cross. As a mark of the Grand Master's special esteem, the Order may also award a Collar to a head of State and very occasionally to its high dignitaries. The Order also confers decorations of merit to its members and to individuals not necessarily members of the Order who have contributed, by their service, to its humanitarian work.

The order's badge is a green Maltese cross edged in gold, worn in different sizes according to rank. The decoration of merit is a green cross flory, with crossed swords in the angles, in the center of which is a circle surrounding the order's green Maltese cross on a white background. The badge depends from a green ribbon edged with purple. It is awarded in the same grades as that of the order. In the English-speaking jurisdictions of the Order members, use post-nominal initials indicating their rank (MLJ,OLJ,CLJ,KLJ,GCLJ) on internal correspondence, and in the ranks of KLJ and above refer to and address one another as "Chevalier".

References:
1. Les Chevaliers de Saint Lazare de 1789 à 1930, Guy Coutant de Saisseval, Drukkerij Weimar by the Hague, undated
2. An Up-Date to the History of the Order 1983-1987, James J. Algrant y Cañete, privately printed, undated
3. "Another View of the History of the Order of Saint Lazarus," James J. Algrant, "Caltrap's Corner,"(webpage )
3. The Catholic Encyclopedia, 1913, electronic version by New Advent, Inc., 1998

Conventions:
1. French titles in French not capitalized except "Duc." Titles in English all upper case.
2. Spanish title "don" not capitalized except at beginning of sentence; in English, is capitalized.

 

The Order of St Lazarus in the Latin East

The Order of St Lazarus in the Latin East

by Natalie Kohout

 

The First Crusade culminated with the capture of Jerusalem in 1099 and within decades new institutions military orders, were founded in the newly claimed Latin East.[1] These orders consisted of members who lived according to rules which resembled existing monastic regulations. The defining feature of these orders was that this religious way of life was combined with fighting.[2] They existed as the only authority to hold an always ready standing army. These orders also had many rights of exemption and often pursued their own policies, in effect making them a state within a state.[3] The Knights Templar, the Knights of St John and the Teutonic Order are all examples of military orders which were born out of the Latin East. However, one military order stood unique above the rest. No where else in Christendom had anyone conceived of forming a military organization which allowed lepers to join and fight. The Order of St Lazarus was a military order similar to the aforementioned ones, but it was very different in that it allowed lepers to take up military duties in its name.

 

Lepers have existed as a marginalized group for hundreds, if not thousands of years and this phenomenon in the Latin East is worthy of attention when one considers the medieval attitudes concerning the affliction. In Europe, a stigma with negative moral implications and severe social consequences was attached to leprosy.[4] Leprosy was seen by many, including the church as a punishment for moral failing.[5] Those diagnosed as lepers were often segregated from society for the rest of their lives and in many areas were declared legally dead.[6] There was another view of lepers which pervaded the medieval landscape in which the leper was seen as someone enduring purgatory on earth as a special reflection of Christ's suffering.[7] Overall, most medieval thinkers appeared to regard the disease of leprosy as something which degraded the individual in both a physical and a moral sense.[8] Keeping with these ideas in mind one should be able to appreciate the exceptionality of a military order of leprous knights within the crusader states, the home of Christendom's holiest city, Jerusalem. A brief history of the order, an examination of the leper hospital from which the order grew out of, and an exploration of the known military exploits shall be tackled in an attempt to illuminate the history of the only military order of leprous knights.

 

Any account of the Order of St Lazarus must begin with a brief look at the leper hospital from which it sprang. The origins of the leper hospital in Jerusalem are controversial and ambiguous.[9] Empress Eudoxia, wife of Arcadius (383-408), was known to have instituted a leper hospital at Jerusalem, however, this particular hospital cannot be concretely linked to the crusading period.[10] Others claim that St Basil founded the hospital in the 4th century[11], and even other possibilities such as Judas Maccabeus have been suggested.[12] The hospital existed under the protection of the Greek patriarchs of Jerusalem from 629 until 1054. From 1098 until 1187 it was under the authority of the Latin patriarchs.[13] At the time of the First Crusade it stood as one of three hospitals in the city. Collectively these hospitals, St Mary Latin, St John the Almoner and St Lazarus were known as the Hospital of Jerusalem.[14] Pilgrim accounts contemporary to the time of the crusades, place the leper hospital near the northwestern corner of the city, between the Tower of Tancred and St Stephen's Gate.[15] The hospital had a wide range of benefactors, even noble and royal patrons, these supporters included King Fulk, Queen Melisende, Baldwin III and Amalric I.[16]

 

The military order of St Lazarus was established sometime in the 12th century[17] to accommodate those who were diagnosed with leprosy in the crusader states.[18] By 1255 the order is known to have followed the Augustinian rule. However, it is unknown which rule the order followed prior to that.[19] Another important landmark in 1255 included recognition of the order's existence by Pope Alexander IV.[20] Their habits were black and resembled those of St John. The green cross associated with the Order of St Lazarus was not adopted until the 16th century.[21] While this order is unique in that it consisted of lepers, healthy men did serve alongside the leprous knights. As noted by Pope Alexander IV in 1255.[22] These knights with leprosy often came from other military orders after they were diagnosed.[23] The Templars decreed that a member who developed leprosy should join the Order of St Lazarus.[24] The Hospitallers stated in their rules that a member who is a leper cannot remain amongst their order.[25] Instead of simply ostracizing these leprous knights, those in the crusader states continued to utilize them, through the conduit of the Order of St Lazarus.

 

The Order of St Lazarus remained primarily a hospitaller order, but did take part in several battles, albeit, not very extensively nor very successfully.[26] It is uncertain when exactly the order took up military duties.[27] Most contend that the first solid evidence of military activity can be found in 1244[28], although there is a contention that a small detachment may have been present at the Battle of Hattin in 1187.[29] In October of 1244, the order participated in the battle at La Forbie, in which the forces of the Kingdom of Jerusalem fought against the Khorezmians.[30] The battle was a disastrous loss for the crusaders and especially for the Order of St Lazarus since every one of its knights perished.[31] In all, over 1000 knights, some from various orders were killed.[32] During the crusade of Louis IX, knights of the order were present at the debacle at Marsuna in 1250 in which the king was captured by the Egyptians.[33] In Acre, the new capital since 1191 after Jerusalem had been lost in 1187, the Order of St Lazarus was reported to have been entrusted with the defense of a tower and a section of the wall.[34] Later when the city found itself under siege, by the Mameluks under al-Ashraf, a force of 25 knights was provided for the city's defense. Again, all of the participants of the order perished, as did the crusaders' last stronghold in the East.[35] Overall, the order's military contribution to the crusader states was nominal, compared to the other military orders, although, this hinged mainly on a lack of resources such as land and manpower.[36]

 

After the fall of Acre in 1291 the Order of St Lazarus was compelled to return to the properties they held in Europe.[37] Slowly the order disengaged itself from active crusading and the disease of leprosy.[38] The image of knights, afflicted by leprosy, surely in some cases literally falling apart from the ravages of the disease, was never again to be seen. In what were the crusader states archeological evidence of the order's life is nearly nonexistent. A mosque covers the site where the leper hospital stood and in Acre almost everything was destroyed. Documentation of the order's history is only sketchy at best.[39] Despite these handicaps a basic history of the Order of St Lazarus is still discernable and speaks to larger questions of the status of leprosy in the Latin East. Several theories of contributing factors concerning this special treatment of lepers in the Order of St Lazarus have been debated. The dire, persistent shortage of manpower in the crusader states may have been an aspect to take into consideration.[40] To simply ostracize a knight who happened to develop leprosy may have been argued as something unthinkable and so a role was created for them.[41] To accommodate such an environment which was so drastically different from their homeland, the crusaders had to reconcile their own customs to the new situations posed to them in the East.[42] Leprosy, in of itself, may have even been viewed differently by those dwelling in the Latin East.[43] At any rate, the Order of St Lazarus is important to take note of because of its unique contribution to history as the only order of leprous knights who performed military duties in the crusader states.

 

Footnotes

 

[1]. Hans Eberhard Mayer, The Crusades , trans, John Gillingham (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1990), 77.

 

[2]. Alan Forey, "The Military Orders 1120-1312," in The Oxford Illustrated History of the Crusades , ed. Jonathan Riley-Smith (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995), 184.

 

[3]. Hans Eberhard Mayer, The Crusades , 78.

 

[4]. Saul Nathaniel Brody, The Disease of the Soul: Leprosy in Medieval Literature (London: Cornell University Press, 1974), 197.

 

[5]. Alexandri III Romani pontificis Opera omnia, id est epistolae et privilegia, ordine chronologico digesta , ed. Jacques-P. Migne, Patrologia Latina, vol. 200 (Paris: n.p/ 1855), col. 1294C-D; Peter Richards, The Medieval Leper and His Northern Heirs (Cambridge: D.S. Brewer, 1977), 45.

 

[6]. Piers D. Mitchell, "The Evolution of Social Attitudes to the Medical Care of Those With Leprosy Within the Crusader States," Lépreux et sociabilité du Moye aux Temps modernes 11 (2000): 21.

 

[7]. David Marcombe, Leper Knights: The Order of St Lazarus of Jerusalem in England, c.1150-1544 (Woodbridge: The Boydell Press, 2003), 6.

 

[8]. James, Brodman, Charity and Welfare: Hospitals and the Poor in Medieval Catalonia (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1998), 74.

 

[9]. David Marcombe, Leper Knights, 6; Adrian J. Boas, Jerusalem in the Time of the Crusades: Society, Landscape and Art in the Holy City Under Frankish Rule (London : Routledge, 2001), 28.

 

[10]. David Marcombe, Leper Knights , 7.

 

[11]. Gerard A. Lee, Leper Hospitals in Medieval Ireland: With a Short Account of the Military and Hospitiller Order of St Lazarus of Jerusalem (Dublin: Four Courts Press, 1996), 65; Adrian J. Boas, Jerusalem in the Time of the Crusades, 28.

 

[12]. David Marcombe, Leper Knights , 7.

 

[13]. Gerard A. Lee, Leper Hospitals in Medieval Ireland , 66.

 

[14]. Adrian J. Boas, Jerusalem in the Time of the Crusades , 28.

 

[15]. Anonymous, The City of Jerusalem, trans. C.R. Conder, The Library of the Palestine Pilgrims' Text Society Vol. VI (New York, AMS Press, 1971), 16; Theoderich, Description of the Holy Places, trans. Aubrey Stewart, The Library of the Palestine Pilgrims' Text Society Vol. V (New York: AMS Press, 1971), 43.

 

[16]. Adrian J. Boas, Jerusalem in the Time of the Crusades , 29; David Marcombe, Leper Knights, 10.

 

[17]. David Marcombe, Leper Knights, 12; Hans Eberhard Mayer, The Crusades, 80; J.M.Upton-Ward, trans., The Rule of the Templars: The French Text of the Order of the Knights Templar (Rochester: Boydell Press, 1997), 115.

 

[18]. Piers Mitchell, "The Archaeological Approach to the Study of Disease in the Crusader States, as Employed at Le Petit Gerin," in The Military Orders . Volume 2, ed. Helen Nicholson (Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing Ltd., 1998), 49.

 

[19]. David Marcombe, Leper Knights , 9.

 

[20]. Gerard A. Lee, Leper Hospitals in Medieval Ireland, 68; David Marcombe, Leper Knights, 12; J.M.Upton-Ward, trans., The Rule of the Templars , 115.

 

[21]. Desmond Seward, The Monks of War: The Military Religious Orders (London: Eyre Methuen, 1972), 33.

 

[22]. David Marcombe, Leper Knights , 14.

 

[23]. Adrian J. Boas, Jerusalem in the Time of the Crusades , 29; David Marcombe, Leper Knights, 13.

 

[24]. J.M.Upton-Ward, trans., The Rule of the Templars , 118.

 

[25]. E.J. King, The Rule Statutes and Customs of the Hospitallers 1099-1310 , With Introductory Chapters and Notes, London: Methuen & CO. LTD., 1934.

 

[26]. David Marcombe, Leper Knights , 247; Desmond Seward, The Monks of War, 33.

 

[27]. Jonathan Phillips, "The Latin East 1098-1291," in The Oxford Illustrated History of the Crusades , ed. Jonathan Riley-Smith (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995), 186.

 

[28]. Hans Eberhard Mayer, The Crusades , 80.

 

[29]. Desmond Seward, The Monks of War , 45.

 

[30]. Alan Forey, The Oxford Illustrated History of the Crusades . 195.

 

[31]. David Marcombe, Leper Knights, 13-14; Desmond Seward, The Monks of War , 67.

 

[32]. Jonathan Phillips, The Oxford Illustrated History of the Crusades , 138.

 

[33]. David Marcombe, Leper Knights , 14.

 

[34]. Piers D. Mitchell, "The Evolution of Social Attitudes to the Medical Care of Those with Leprosy within the Crusader States," Lépreux et sociabilité du Moye aux Temps modernes 11 (2000): 25.

 

[35]. David Marcombe, Leper Knights, 15, Desmond Seward, The Monks of War , 81.

 

[36]. David Marcombe, Leper Knights , 30.

 

[37]. Ibid ., 247.

 

[38]. Ibid ., 22.

 

[39]. Ibid ., 25.

 

[40]. Ibid ., 13.

 

[41]. David Marcombe, Leper Knights , 11.

 

[42]. Jonathan Phillips, The Oxford Illustrated History of the Crusades , 119.

 

[43]. David Marcombe, Leper Knights , 6.

 

References

 

 

Primary:

Alexandri III Romani pontificis Opera omnia, id est epistolae et privilegia, ordine chronologico digest . Ed. Jacques-P. Migne, Patrologia Latina, vol. 200. Paris: n.p., 1855.

 

Anonymous. The City of Jerusalem. Trans. C.R. Conder. The Library of the Palestine Pilgrims' Text Society Vol. VI . New York, AMS Press, 1971.

 

King, E.J. The Rule Statutes and Customs of the Hospitallers . London: Methuen & CO. LTD., 1934.

 

Theoderich. Description of the Holy Places. Trans. Aubrey Stewart. The Library of the Palestine Pilgrims' Text Society Vol. V. New York: AMS Press, 1971.

 

Upton-Ward, J.M.Trans. The Rule of the Templars: The French Text of the Order of the Knights Templar. Rochester: Boydell Press, 1997.

 

Secondary:

 

Boas, Adrian J. Jerusalem in the Time of the Crusades: Society, Landscape and Art in the Holy City under Frankish Rule . London : Routledge, 2001.

 

Brodman, James. Charity and Welfare: Hospitals and the Poor in Medieval Catalonia . Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1998.

 

Forey, Alan. "The Military Orders, 1120-1312." In The Oxford Illustrated History of the Crusades , ed. Jonathan Riley-Smith, 184-216. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995.

 

Lee, Gerard A. Leper Hospitals in Medieval Ireland: With a Short Account of the Military and Hospitiller Order of St Lazarus of Jerusalem . Dublin: Four Courts Press Ltd., 1996.

 

Marcombe, David. Leper Knights: The Order of St Lazarus of Jerusalem in England , c.1150-1544. Woodbridge: The Boydell Press, 2003.

 

Mayer, Hans Eberhard. The Crusades . Trans. John Gillingham. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1990.

 

Mitchell, Piers D. "The Evolution of Social Attitudes to the Medical Care of Those With Leprosy Within the Crusader States," Lépreux et sociabilité du Moyen aux Temps modernes 11 (2000): 21-27.

 

Mitchell, Piers. "The Archaeological Approach to the Study of Disease in the Crusader States, as Employed at Le Petit Gerin." In The Military Orders . Volume 2, ed. Helen Nicholson, 43-50. Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing Ltd., 1998.

 

Phillips, Jonathan. "The Latin East, 1098-1291." In The Oxford Illustrated History of the Crusades , ed. Jonathan Riley-Smith, 112-140. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995.

 

Richards, Peter. The Medieval Leper and His Northern Heirs . Cambridge: D.S. Brewer, 1977.

 

Seward, Desmond. The Monks of War: The Military Religious Orders . London: Eyre Methuen, 1972.

 

- - -

 

Copyright © 2005 Natalie Kohout .

 

Written by Natalie Kohout   If you have questions or comments on this article, please contact Natalie Kohout at: boudiccaswrath@gmail.com.

 

About the author:

Natalie Kohout is originally from southern California, but currently resides in Michigan. She graduated in 2005 from the California State University of Fullerton with a Bachelor of Arts in history and a minor in anthropology. She plans on attending a school in Michigan for her masters. Medieval Europe is her chosen area of study with a special interest in lepers and their interaction within medieval society.

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La nature d'armoiries (héraldique d'ordre) l'Ordre Militaire et Hospitalier de Saint Lazare de Jérusalem Adolf F. J. Karlovsky

 

La formation de la nature d'armoiries européenne est liée étroitement aux croisades et au monde d'idée total de la chevalerie médiévale chevaleresque.

Cela se trouve dans la nature de la personne de se distinguer mutuellement, de soigner des particularités de se "distinguer". D'autant plus compréhensible le souhait est le chevalier apres une "distinction" particuliere, pourtant, ils s'engageaient avec le coup de chevalier pour toujours au service de Dieu, service de monsieur et service de femmes, comment cela ordonnait aussi son honneur personnel. Les armoiries de familles se développent alors des armoiries personnelles vraiment tout seul, comme une conséquence logique. Il est aussi compréhensible qu'aussi les associations chevaleresques acceptaient de nouveau un symbole commun comme la totalité, donc les "ordres" de quoi a elles-meme au cours du temps les armoiries d'ordre et aussi les insignes d'ordre développaient.

Naturellement on trouve dans tous les ordres européens la croix, déja comme le signe de distinction de ses opposants islamiques le plus souvent dans la lutte. Du tout suit aussi le développement des signes de distinction des tribus et des nations; certains Etats européens, avant tout, l'Autriche, déduisent ses couleurs nationales directement des croisades. Les armoiries comme le signe de distinction apprenaient naturellement peu apres les plus vastes différenciations.


Chevalier de Saint Lazare 
pres de 1200

L'chevaliers de Saint Lazare portaient de meme que les plus grandes autres associations chevaleresques, la soi-disante croix "grecque" dont les poutres sont longues de la meme façon, sur les jupes d'armes a la hauteur de l'épaule gauche. D'une façon frappante aux Lazarusrittern était la couleur de sa croix: Verts. La couleur restait caractéristique jusqu'a aujourd'hui pour l'Ordre de Saint Lazare, elle devenait meme un synonyme pour „caritatif". Le vert aux de chevaliers de Saint Lazare était absolument frappant parce que cette couleur initialement seulement comme la couleur supplémentaire aux armoiries n'arrive jamais cependant pratiquement comme la couleur de la figure d'enseigne.

En tous cas le vert est valable comme typique pour Ordre de Saint Lazare depuis les jours de l'héraldique tôt.

Vaclav Mericka écrit en plus: „La couleur verte était caractéristique pour les ordres d'hôpital et était utilisée par l'ordre de chevalier spirituel du Saint Lazarus et par tous ses successeurs, et pour préciser, avant tout, de l'ordre français du meme nom, de savoyard et plus tard les italiens Ordres de Sainte Maurice et Saint Lazarus, mais aussi par l'ordre moderne, souverain du Saint Lazarus.

Des ordres mentionnés de reste dirigeaient l'Ordre d'Alcantara et l'Ordre du saint Benedikt von Aviz un ruban vert. Sur les autres ordres de chevalier mondains, qui portaient le signe au ruban vert, sont mentionnés l'ordre allemand du saint Joachim, l'Ordre de Wasa suédois et l'Ordre saxon de la couronne de losanges, étendu des ordres de chardon écossais, des Ordres éthiopiens du sceau de Salomon et le nord de soleil persan et nord de lion." (L'ordre et les distinctions, Artia, Prague, en 1966.)

L'insigne d'ordre premier, la croix de héraut verte dans les armoiries, était modifié sous grand maître Jean de Levis (1557-1564) a huit croix pointues de la soi-disante "maniere de Maltais".

Aussi cette croix était cousue initialement seulement de la matiere sur le manteau; seulement tardif naissaient aussi les décorations émaillées portantes autour du cou, comme nous les connaissons aujourd'hui.

Les grandes armoiries d'ordre actuelles, établies apres les ordres encore valables du chapitre général du 17 décembre 1933, témoignent déja par sa simplicité son âge respectable des jours de l'héraldique tôt.


Les grandes armoiries d'ordre

Son élément principal est une enseigne en argent avec la croix continue. L'argent de l'enseigne est valable - apres une explication du grand maître Charles Achille de Nérestang (en 1645-1673) - comme la „couleur de la sainte Vierge" tandis que le vert symbolise l'espoir. A cette enseigne d'ordre devient l'un avec huit pointes, la croix verte sous-met - jusqu'a 1556, il était une croix grecque - et Collane entoure les deux du bijou d'ordre.

Le manteau d'armoiries noir - noir de maniere rappelée a Basilius rappelle le grand a l'ancienne souveraineté de l'ordre.

Le manteau d'armoiries est fait manger de l'hermine et est excessif par Magistral la couronne; en outre, le manteau est attaché par les ficelles dorées avec glands.

L'épaule gauche (héraldique) orne vert, doré bordureque huit croix d'ordre pointues. Magistral la couronne est Oriental doré, fait manger noir la couronne avec neuf pointes visibles. Une pomme d'empire avec huit petites croix pointues releve la couronne.

En dehors de l'enseigne se trouve un ruban vert avec la devise de l'ordre Atavis et Armis (Avec des ancetres et armes) dans l'écriture en argent, une devise qui détachait la vieille devise En guerre et en paix au 18eme siecle.

Le sceau d'ordre est rond et montre les petites armoiries d'ordre, une croix verte continue qui entoure les ordres Collane du bijou porte c.-a-d. l'enseigne en argent.

Parce que la nature d'armoiries était regardée depuis son apparition comme une affaire chevaleresque et des armoiries mener fait partie des prérogatives les plus distinguées et des droits de chaque chevalier, il est aussi tout a fait naturel que l'ordre du saint Lazarus encourageait la direction d'armoiries de ses membres depuis le début non seulement, mais encore contrôlait. Dans „Bibliothěque national " parisien, il y a quatre grands livres d'armoiries magnifiques de l'ordre; Grand Preurés différents (la Boheme, par exemple, depuis 1937) menaient ou dirigent des rôles d'armoiries de ses chevaliers et Affiliés. Appartenir a l'ordre, on regardait toujours a juste titre comme un grand honneur, et c'est pourquoi, les chevaliers d'ordre s'efforçaient déja depuis le 14eme siecle de montrer cette appartenance aussi dans ses armoiries et de souligner clairement. Au cours du temps, l'ordre réglait cet usage, et les principes introduits étaient aussi constatés dans l'ordre mentionné du 17 décembre 1933. Dans le proche avenir, une publication d'ordre nouvellement travaillée et élargie séparée avec les illustrations expliquant apparaîtra a ce sujet.

Tous les chevaliers d'ordre sont autorisés a accepter une tete d'enseigne en argent avec la croix verte continue dans ses armoiries. Plus loin de maniere succombée elle a l'enseigne d'armoiries huit pointes, verdit la croix d'ordre (le chevalier de droit sans bordure, chevaliers de la devotion sait bordureque) et entourent le bouclier du ruban d'ordre vert (ou Ordenscollane) avec le bijou correspondant (la croix de cou ou une grande croix). Il est a faire attention naturellement que chaque chevalier d'ordre peut joindre seulement ces insignes qui lui reviennent et lequel il porte dans la réalité aussi a "in natura". Affiliertes et Compagnons joignent a l'enseigne d'armoiries seulement ses bijoux correspondants, ne sont pas autorisés cependant a la direction de la tete d'enseigne ou de la croix derriere l'enseigne. Le Droit et Devotionsdamen dirigent au contraire la tete d'enseigne d'ordre et joignent aussi leur bijou d'ordre sous l'enseigne, sans bouclier donc avec huit croix pointues a succombé qui ne revient pas aussi a Chevaliers de Minorité.

Les plus hauts dignitaires de l'ordre, c'est-a-dire, le grand maître (ou le gouverneur, au cas ou le deviendrait du grand maître n'est pas occupé), les membres de l'administration centrale et le supérieur conseil ainsi que Grand Prieurs et Grand Baillis, sont autorisés a mettre ses armoiries avec tous les éléments leur revenant, comme le casque avec la décoration de casque et les couvertures de casque, ou des pieces de magnificence (par exemple, a des détenteurs d'enseigne, devises, couronnes etc.) et avec tous les insignes de ses Deviendrait dans l'ordre, de plus sur le manteau d'armoiries d'ordre décrit en haut. Aussi celui-ci est relevé par Magistral la couronne. Le protecteur spirituel de l'ordre dirige la couronne, le manteau d'armoiries et les signes d'honneur (derriere l'enseigne l'Etat-major de serpents croisé obliquement et la croix de patriarche) de son administration comme patriarche de Jérusalem.

Le grand maître (ou le gouverneur) de l'ordre est autorisé comme l'unique a élever au carré ses armoiries de familles avec les armoiries d'ordre dans ses armoiries au lieu de la tete d'enseigne et a elles-meme dans l'enseigne ainsi carrés de maniere divisée dans le 1er et 4 eme champ les armoiries d'ordre et répetent les armoiries de familles dans le 2eme et 3eme champ. L'insigne du grand maître (ou du gouverneur) se compose de deux bâtons de commandement croisés obliquement derriere l'enseigne. Ceux-ci sont semés blanc des ferrures dorées et de huit pointes les petites croix d'ordre vertes. Dans les ferrures inférieures devient la devise d'ordre charger.


Les armoiries du 49eme grand maître, 
H.E. Don Carlos Gereda de Borbon, 
Marquis de Almazan

Grand capitular croise derriere son enseigne le bâton de commandement avec le sceptre de main de serment, un grand chancelier le bâton de commandement avec l'épée d'ordre.

Parce que l'ordre est international, les traditions différentes locales et nationales se refletent de maniere compréhensible dans l'héraldique de ses membres. Ainsi c'est presque impossible, par exemple de représenter les armoiries des chevaliers de l'Europe centrale, scandinaves ou anglo-saxon sans casque, décoration de casque et couvertures de casque. D'une autre partie, on souligne dans les pays romans ou la décoration de casque est presque inconnue particulierement a la basse noblesse, cependant de nouveau des couronnes de rang, détenteurs d'enseigne, devises etc. Aussi l'enseigne de dames spéciale sont presque obligatoires de nouveau pratiquement inconnu dans certain large, dans les autres pays. Toutes ces habitudes sont respectées naturellement par l'ordre, et les dispositions de l'ordre offrent aussi assez d'espace pour etre adaptées aux traditions locales. Aussi des bijoux des autres ordres reconnus ou des hautes distinctions avec des armoiries peuvent etre portés en meme temps avec la croix de St. Lazarus.

Les membres d'ordre, lesquels n'ont aucune armoiries de familles héritée a présent de ses investiture ou ne dirigent aucune armoiries personnelle, peuvent cela qui acceptent la tradition héraldique de sa patrie et les regles et les habitudes de la nature d'armoiries en respectant strictement, librement et présentent a un grand chancelier au enregistratisment. Des telles armoiries deviennent ainsi, naturellement sans insignes de ordre de Saint Lazare qui reviennent seulement aux membres d'ordre réels, dans la famille de l'acquéreur d'armoiries pâlissait.

La devise d'ordre s'énonçait jusqu'au 18eme siecle „A la guerre et dans la paix, au pays et a l'eau".

Tous les dignitaires et les chevaliers de ordre de Saint Lazare sont autorisés a combiner les armoiries d'ordre avec ses armoiries de familles (ou les armoiries personnelles). Il s'agit pour cela encore l'ordre du grand maître de ordre de Saint Lazare du 17 décembre 1933.

Ici serait mentionné seulement en général que le chef d'ordre dirige les armoiries d'ordre en commun avec ses armoiries de familles dans une enseigne.

Les chevaliers de l'ordre de Saint Lazarus sont autorisés a la direction d'une tete d'enseigne. En outre, la direction de huit pointes de la croix d'ordre leur revient aussi derriere l'enseigne d'armoiries de l'ordre de Saint Lazarus.

Tous les membres d'ordre peuvent aussi joindre l'insigne d'ordre (bijou d'ordre) a ses armoiries de familles (ou les armoiries personnelles).

Source: Extrait de l'ouvrage "Memento", l'auteur: † Éric Feigl, passé au dehors par l'administration de chancelier de Grand Prieuré de l'Autriche d'Ordre Militaire et Hospitalier Lazare de Saint de Jérusalem de, Vienne, en 1978, des côtés 118 jusqu'a 121.

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Breve Histoire de L'Ordre de Saint Lazare de Jérusalem.



 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

Avant les croisades, il existait à Jérusalem, en dehors des murailles de la Ville Sainte, un hôpital pour les lépreux, placé sous l’invocation de Saint-Lazare. Dépendant de la juridiction des Patriarches grecs melkites de Jérusalem, il était desservi par des moines arméniens suivant la règle de Saint-Basile le Grand. L’Ordre de Saint-Lazare est issu de cet hôpital.


Lorsque les croisés arrivèrent en Terre Sainte en 1098, l’hôpital Saint-Lazare ainsi que l’hôpital Saint-Jean, regroupés sous le nom d’hôpital de Jérusalem, étaient administrés par le frère Gérard Tenque, un français originaire de Martigues.

A la différence des autres ordres militaires et religieux qui s’établirent en Terre Sainte, Saint-Jean, le Temple ou Sainte-Marie des Teutoniques qui dépendaient de l’Eglise latine, l’Ordre de Saint-Lazare demeura sous la dépendance de l’Eglise d’Orient. En l’absence du Patriarche grec melkite, le Maître de Saint-Lazare était suffragant de l’archevêque des Arméniens.


Les hospitaliers de Saint-Lazare soignaient les lépreux et devaient accueillir parmi eux les chevaliers des autres ordres atteints de la lèpre. C’est ainsi que l’Ordre devint militaire.


Après la prise de Jérusalem par Saladin en 1157, l’action militaire des chevaliers hospitaliers de Saint-Lazare se développa. Ils participèrent à la prise d’Acre en 1191. On les retrouve ensuite aux côtés de l’empereur Frédéric II de Hohenstaufen, Roi de Jérusalem, dans sa croisade en 1227. En 1244, ils prirent une part héroïque à la funeste bataille de Gaza. Puis, aux côtés du Roi de France, les chevaliers de Saint-Lazare participèrent au combat de Damiette et à la bataille de la Mansourah (1249). Lors du siège de Saint-Jean d’Acre en 1291, ils furent avec les chevaliers des autres ordres, les défenseurs héroïques de la dernière citadelle des chrétiens en Orient. Les survivants se réfugièrent à Chypre d'où ils rejoignirent la France.


Des commanderies de l’Ordre existaient alors  dans de nombreux pays : France, Angleterre, Ecosse, Allemagne, Hongrie, Espagne, Italie, Suisse, Flandres, etc… En 1154, le Roi de France, Louis VII, donna à l’Ordre de Saint-Lazare le château royal de Boigny près d’Orléans. Après la perte de ses possessions en Terre Sainte, lors de la chute de St Jean d’Acre en 1291, et un bref passage à Chypre, l’Ordre regagna ses commanderies européennes. Boigny devient le siège du Grand Magistère.


En 1308, le Roi de France, Philippe IV le Bel, prit l’ensemble des chevaliers de Saint-Lazare sous sa garde et protection qui, depuis lors, devint héréditaire au sein de la Monarchie Française.


Sous la direction du Grand-Maître, qui résidait à Boigny, l’Ordre de Saint-Lazare se consacra dans les divers pays où il avait des commanderies aux soins des lépreux et à la création de nombreuses maladreries et léproseries.


Au cours des XIVème et XVème siècles, les chevaliers développèrent leur activité hospitalière et leur fonction militaire s’affirma. Ils furent notamment au côté du Roi de France pendant la guerre de Cent ans et certains d’entre eux compagnons de Jeanne d’Arc au siège d’Orléans.


Mais l’Ordre de Saint-Lazare devait, à la fin du XVème et au cours du XVIème siècle faire face à de nombreuses difficultés.


En 1517, le Prieuré de Capoue se détacha du Grand Magistère de Boigny et constitua une branche distincte de l’Ordre laquelle, en 1572, s’unit à l’Ordre de Saint-Maurice pour former l’Ordre des Saints Maurice et Lazare sous la Grande Maîtrise héréditaire des ducs de Savoie (Maison devenue ensuite la Maison Royale d'Italie). En Angleterre, le roi Henri VIII, lorsqu’il rompit avec l’Eglise catholique en 1534, réunit au domaine royal les biens de l’Ordre. En Allemagne et en Suisse, lors de la Réforme, l’Ordre fut dépossédé de ses biens.


En France, grâce à la protection héréditaire des rois de France, l’Ordre de Saint-Lazare échappa à toute absorption et spoliation. Les Grands-Maîtres de Boigny jouèrent un rôle important. Ce fut le cas de François Salviati (1578-1586) qui, avec l’aide de Henri III maintint le caractère international de l’Ordre ou celui de Aimard de Clermont de Chastes (1593-1603) qui fut vice-amiral de France et Compagnon du Roi.


En 1607, le roi Henri IV fonda l’Ordre de Notre-Dame du Mont-Carmel, et en confia en 1608, la Grande Maîtrise au Grand-Maître de l’Ordre de Saint-Lazare, le marquis de Nerestang. Les deux Ordres réunis eurent une vie commune jusqu’en 1788, soit un peu plus d’un siècle et demi, sans qu’il y eut pour cela fusion ou confusion. A partir de 1779, néanmoins, chaque Ordre reprit un recrutement et des insignes propres.


En 1612, des vaisseaux de guerre arborant le pavillon des Ordres réunis prirent part à des expéditions au Niger. En 1666, les Ordres de Saint-Lazare et de Notre-Dame du Mont-Carmel constituèrent une flotte de guerre battant pavillon aux armes des Ordres dont le port d’attache fut Saint-Malo. Cette escadre comprenait dix frégates. Enfin, en 1677, les Ordres fondèrent à Paris une Académie de Marine.


En 1672, le roi Louis XIV avait confié aux chevaliers de Saint-Lazare et de Notre-Dame du Mont-Carmel l’administration de toutes les léproseries, hôpitaux et Maisons-Dieu du royaume. Les Ordres réunis constituèrent ainsi un véritable ministère de la Santé jusqu’en 1693.


Sous la Grande-Maîtrise du marquis de Dangeau (1693-1720) les Ordres connurent une période faste et étendirent leur recrutement dans divers pays : Espagne, Naples, Saxe, Pologne, Danemark, Suède, Ecosse et parmi les chrétiens d’Orient, fidèles, en cela, aux origines de l’Ordre de Saint-Lazare.


Après le duc d’Orléans, premier Prince de sang royal, le prince Louis de France, duc de Berry et futur Louis XVI, fut investi de la Grande-Maîtrise en 1757. Au cours de celle-ci, les Ordres furent sécularisés par la bulle « Militarium ordinum institutio » du pape Clément XIV du 10 décembre 1772. Ils perdirent leur caractère religieux pour devenir des institutions laïques proposant à leurs membres une règle de vie spirituelle.


Le duc de Berry étant devenu Dauphin de France, se démit de sa fonction de Grand-Maître et son frère, le comte de Provence, futur Louis XVIII, lui succéda en 1773.


Par un règlement du 21 janvier 1779, le nouveau Grand-Maître séparait le recrutement des Ordres réunis. L’Ordre de Notre-Dame du Mont-Carmel était désormais réservé aux seuls élèves de l’Ecole militaire. La dernière promotion fut nommée en juillet 1787 et l’Ecole supprimée en 1788. Le roi Louis XVI attribua, par lettres patentes de septembre 1788, les bâtiments de l’Ecole militaire aux chevaliers de Saint-Lazare.


Les évènements de 1789 empêchèrent l’Ordre de poursuivre ses activités. Il n’y eut pas d’investiture lors de la Saint-Lazare, le 17 décembre 1789, comme cela était la tradition et le gouvernement révolutionnaire confisqua tous les biens de l’Ordre en 1791, y compris la commanderie magistrale de Boigny. Le comte de Provence partit en émigration où il continua de diriger l’Ordre et de nommer des chevaliers. En 1799, il admit dans l’Ordre le Tsar Paul 1er de Russie et le futur Tsar Alexandre 1er, faisant de même en 1808 pour le roi Gustave IV de Suède : la sécularisation de l’Ordre permettant d’admettre des chrétiens non catholiques. Une nouvelle vocation de l’Ordre apparaissait, celle de l’unité des chrétiens.


En 1814, lorsque le Roi Louis XVIII rentra en France, l’Ordre de Saint-Lazare reprit sa place, mais le Roi ne conserva pas la Grande-Maîtrise se contentant d’en être le Protecteur.


A sa mort, en 1824, son successeur, le roi Charles X, devint protecteur de l’Ordre. Celui-ci était dirigé alors par le Conseil des officiers au nombre desquels figuraient le commandeur comte d’Albignac et le commandeur marquis d’Autichamp secondés par le baron Silvestre, héraut d’armes de l’Ordre.


Louis XVIII étant protecteur de l’Ordre, ne semble pas avoir autorisé de nominations ou de promotions dans l’Ordre, par contre, sous le protectorat du roi Charles X, une dizaine de nominations témoignent de son renouveau.


Lors de la révolution de 1830, les chevaliers de Saint-Lazare perdirent leur protecteur, le roi Charles X étant contraint à l’exil, et Louis-Philippe, Roi des Français, s'en désintéressant, ils se tournèrent alors vers leur premier protecteur, le patriarche grec catholique melkite. Le patriarche Maximos III Malsoum accepta en 1841 de reprendre cette protection. Les responsables de l'église melkite Saint Nicolas de Myre, à Marseille, reçoivent depuis cette date le titre de Chapelain de l'ordre de Saint Lazare.


De caractère laïc depuis 1772, l’Ordre n’avait plus de lien formel avec le Saint-Siège. La perte de son protecteur temporel, le roi de France depuis Philippe le Bel, l’obligeait à trouver un garant de sa continuité. Le choix du patriarche grec catholique est un tournant fondamental dans l’histoire de l’Ordre. Les chevaliers hospitaliers de Saint-Lazare vont ainsi renouer avec l’humilité de leurs origines orientales et s’inscrirent dans la continuité de la bulle « Militarium ordinum institutio ».


Dès 1844, ils participent à une œuvre importante dans le cadre de leurs nouveaux engagements. Il s’agit de la reconstruction du monastère du Mont-Carmel près de Jérusalem.


Dans la deuxième partie du XIXème siècle, les derniers chevaliers nommés au cours de la restauration seront rejoints par des chevaliers nommés par les patriarches successifs afin de maintenir le service de l’Ordre. Ceci a été confirmé formellement par le patriarche Maximos V et totalement assumé par le Patriarche actuel, Grégoire III.


En 1910, le Patriarche Cyrille VIII Ghéa rétablit la Chancellerie de l’Ordre à Paris et celle-ci reprit en main les destinées de l’Ordre. Après la guerre de 1914-1918, il s’étendit en France, en Espagne et aux Pays-Bas sous la direction d’un conseil des Officiers comme en 1841.


En 1930, le Grand Magistère fut restauré et François de Bourbon, duc de Séville, en prit la tête avec le titre provisoire de Lieutenant-Général.


L’Ordre, dès lors, continua plus activement son œuvre, en particulier l’aide aux malades, aux lépreux, aux chrétiens d’Orient et son action en faveur de l’unité des chrétiens.


En décembre 1935, le chapitre général se réunit en France et le duc de Séville fut élu Grand-Maître. De nouvelles associations nationales furent créées, notamment en Allemagne avec le prince Ferdinand de Hohenzollern, en Bohême avec le prince Charles de Schwartzenberg, en Roumanie avec le roi Carol II, en Bulgarie avec le roi Boris III.


Lors de la seconde guerre mondiale, l’Ordre de Saint-Lazare organisa dès 1940, un corps d’ambulances pour le front français. Pendant l’occupation, il institua un corps de volontaires secouristes dits «Volontaires de l’Ordre de Saint-Lazare » qui sauva de nombreuses vies lors des bombardements. Son action humanitaire et patriotique fut reconnue par le gouvernement français en 1945 et 1947, qui décerna, à ce titre, la croix de guerre au Grand Capitulaire de l’Ordre.


Après le conflit, les chevaliers de Saint-Lazare développèrent leurs œuvres charitables et l’Ordre fut reconnu par plusieurs gouvernements : l’Espagne en 1940, la Bolivie en 1950, l’Argentine en 1951 puis par la suite, le Canada en 1963, le Sénégal en 1971, l’Autriche en 1977, la Croatie en 1992 et la Hongrie en 1993.


En 1952, le duc de Séville décéda et son fils François de Bourbon fut désigné comme Lieutenant-Général du Grand Magistère puis élu en 1956 comme Grand-Maître.


En 1967, le conseil suprême de l’Ordre transféra le siège magistral à Boigny. Cette même année, le duc de Nemours succéda à François de Bourbon à la Grande-Maîtrise.


En 1969, le chapitre général fut obligé d’arbitrer un différent entre le Grand-Maître et le gouvernement de l’Ordre. Il trancha en défaveur du duc de Nemours et procéda à l’élection de Pierre de Cossé, XIIème Duc de Brissac, qui reçut le titre de Lieutenant Général puis celui de Grand-Maître en 1976.


Les décisions des chapitres généraux de 1967 et 1969 furent entérinées par le Protecteur Spirituel de l’Ordre, le Patriarche Maximos V, assurant ainsi leur validité.


Toutefois, certains membres de l’Ordre refusèrent cette décision et se regroupèrent autour du duc de Nemours. A sa mort, en 1970, François de Bourbon et Bourbon prit la tête de ce groupe.


Le Patriarche grec catholique, garant de la légitimité et de la continuité de l’Ordre mit en place une commission de conciliation qui aboutit, en 1987, au chapitre général d’Oxford qui procéda à l’élection d’un nouveau Grand-Maître pour tout l’Ordre réuni. François de Cossé, marquis de Brissac, fut élu 48ème Grand-Maître et Chef Suprême de l’Ordre Militaire et Hospitalier de Saint-Lazare de Jérusalem, « tant en deçà qu’au-delà des mers ».


Après la mort de son père, le 04 avril 1993, il est devenu le XIIIème duc de Brissac.


Aujourd’hui, l’Ordre de Saint-Lazare est présent sur tous les continents et son action hospitalière, traditionnellement tournée vers les lépreux et l’Afrique, se développe maintenant dans tous les pays d’Europe Centrale et Orientale, notamment dans l’ancienne Yougoslavie en guerre.


Le Chapitre Général de 1987 n’ayant jamais été totalement mis en œuvre, il a été organisé en septembre 2008, à Manchester, un nouveau Chapitre Général au cours duquel a été pleinement réalisée la réunification des deux Obédiences, à savoir l'Obédience dite de Paris (Duc de Brissac) et l'Obédience dite de Malte (Duc de Séville).


L'ordre est donc désormais sous l'autorité d'un Grand Maître unique, Don Carlos GEREDA, Marquis d'ALMAZAN, Grand d'Espagne, Cousin de SM le Roi Juan-Carlos.


Il est important de rappeler ici certains principes qui, comme vient de le prouver l’étude de notre histoire, doivent impérativement être respectés pour garantir sa légitimité.


Le premier concerne l'autonomie de l'Ordre, qui ne dépend d'aucune Autorité exogène (contrairement par exemple à certains Ordres Royaux ou Vaticanesques), ce qui a eu au cours de l'Histoire une conséquence primordiale : aucune autre autorité que son Chapitre Général n'aurait pu prononcer sa dissolution. Ce qui bien entendu n'a jamais eu lieu, malgré des périodes quelquefois difficiles.


Le deuxième concerne l’impérieuse nécessité de l’approbation par le Patriarche grec Melkite Catholique de toutes les décisions du Chapitre Général. En dehors de cette approbation, toute décision est inopérante.


Le troisième est relatif à la transmission de l’état chevaleresque par l’investiture, celle-ci doit être sans interruption et transmise validement selon le principe immémorial : tout Chevalier peut créer un autre Chevalier.


Ces  principes fondamentaux permettent de faire preuve de discernement dans les étapes de la vie de notre Ordre, dont les membres sont recrutés par cooptation parmi des personnes " de bonne réputation et menant une vie honorable", appartenant à l'une ou l'autre des confessions chrétiennes, en règle avec leur Eglise, et s'engageant tant à respecter une règle de vie spirituelle qu'à la pratique des "vertus chevaleresques " que sont : loyauté, largesse, modération, courtoisie et honneur, à maintenir la Tradition et l’Histoire, et œuvrer à l'unité des chrétiens.



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The Order of Saint Lazarus, like the other orders born in the Holy Land during the Crusades, had a turbulent and honorable beginning, a brief but very useful role in exterminating leprosy in Europe during the middle ages, another brief naval period when it served with distinction attacking pirates in the Mediterranean during the seventeenth century, after which it became an honorific distinction bestowed by the King of France.
Gerard de Martigues, a Provençal, later known as the "Blessed Gerard," founded the Order of Saint John and was director of the Hospital of Notre Dame in the Holy City sometime before the Crusaders conquered Jerusalem in 1099. At first, Gerard directed the Hospital under the authority of the Abbot of St. Mary. Later he and his companions left and created a special congregation, adopted a Rule, took vows and were accredited by the Popes. The first bull in their favor is dated 15 February 1113 and refers to "Gerard, Founder and Governor of the Hospital at Jerusalem and his Legitimate Successors".

Godfrey de Bouillon, uncrowned "king" of Jerusalem was so impressed with the dedication of Gerard and his companions towards the sick and the wounded that he supported and gave them funds and facilities. Some believe that the Order of Saint Lazarus took on a separate identity in 1120 when Boyand Roger, Rector of the Hospital of Jerusalem was elected Master of the Hospitalers of Saint Lazarus. Those suffering from the "living death" of leprosy regarded Lazarus (Luke 16:19-31) as their patron saint and usually dedicated their hospices to him. The first written reference we have to Saint Lazarus as a "knightly" order is a letter written by Henry II, King of England and Duke of Normandy, dated 1159, in which he makes a large donation to it, and refers to the "Knights and Brethren of Saint Lazarus".

Five major orders were formed in the Holy Land in the late 11th-early 12th century: the Knights Templar, Knights Hospitaller (St. John), Knights of the Holy Sepulchre, Knights of the Hospital of St. Mary of Jerusalem (Teutonic Knights) and Knights of Saint Lazarus. Templar knights who contracted leprosy were sent to the care of the Order of Saint Lazarus. These knights trained the brethren of Saint Lazarus in the military arts and were responsible for transforming the Order into a military one. Gerard (v.s.) became director of the new leper hospital and appointed Boyand Roger as director and Master of Saint Lazarus. William, Archbishop of Tyre, as well as other historians of the period, appeared unaware of the difference between the Orders of Saint Lazarus and Saint John and lumped them together, referring to them in their accounts only as "Hospitalers". By 1256 the Order of Saint Lazarus had grown considerably and its existence was recognized by Pope Alexander IV under the Rule of St. Augustine. It acquired a church, a convent and a mill in Jerusalem and property near the Mount of Olives. It built a chapel at Tiberias and two hospitals for pilgrims in Armenia. It acquired more establishments at Nablus, Ascalon and Cæsarea.

In 1187 Saladin invaded and reconquered the Holy Land. The Order lost its main hospital and convent, and a contingent of knights perished in the loss of Jerusalem. In 1191 Richard coeur de lion defeated Saladin at Azoof and recaptured Jaffa. He and Saladin made a treaty by which the sea coast from Tyre to Jaffa remained in the possession of the Crusaders, and Christians were allowed full liberty to visit the Holy Sepulchre. The Order relocated to Acre, built a hospital, convent and church, and carried on with its hospitaller functions. It secured sovereign rights over a portion of the city on territory ceded to it by the Templars, and Pope Urban IV confirmed its privileges in 1264. They were mentioned as being present at the battle of Gaza in 1244 and at the final siege in 1291 when Acre fell to the greatly superior Mameluke forces. The Christian knights present in Acre perished, as did Christian hopes in the East. The green cross of Saint Lazarus disappeared from the Holy Land after two hundred years. It moved to Cyprus, then Sicily, then returned to its headquarters at Boigny near Orléans in France. The property at Boigny was given to it by King Louis VII in 1154 and erected as a barony in 1288. Many knights who had become used to the Mediterranean climate decided not to return to France and went no farther than Sicily, where they established themselves on properties given to them by the Germanic Roman Emperor Frederick von Hohenstauffen. Their headquarters was in Capua, on the Iralian mainland These expatriates eventually became a completely separate branch of the Order under Papal jurisdiction when in 1489 Pope Innocent VIII fulminated a bull giving the properties of the Orders of Saint Lazarus and of the Holy Sepulchre to the Order of St. John, in effect dissolving the two. The branch of Saint Lazarus at Boigny refused to recognize the validity of the bull.

By the early sixteenth century the Order was moribund. Leprosy had been virtually eliminated in Europe. The Crusades were over, and in Papal eyes there was very little to justify the continued existence of Saint Lazarus. Though the knights of Saint Lazarus at Boigny continued to function as an order, as far as the Pope was concerned, the Order in France had ceased to exist. The properties of the Sicilian branch had been transferred by the Pope to the Savoyan Order of Saint Maurice, which became the Order of Saints Maurice and Lazarus. Originally created as a military order whose mission was to protect the Papal States' shoreline from the Barbary pirates, it soon became nothing more than a distinction of the House of Savoy and after the unification of Italy, a state order along with that of the Crown of Italy. Following the Second World War, King Umberto exercised from his exile in Portugal his right of fons honorum and proffered these Savoian orders to many of his deserving friends. His son, Prince Victor Emanuel, continues to award the order.
On 25 July 1593, King Henry of Navarre abjured the Protestant faith in order to accede to the French throne as Henri IV. In 1608, two years before his assassination, he created with the blessing of Pope Paul V the Order of Our Lady of Mount Carmel and named Philibert, Marquis de Nerestang, Grand Master of Saint Lazarus, Grand Master of the new order. He in effect amalgamated the two orders, which then became known as the Order of Our Lady of Mount Carmel and Saint Lazarus. The insignia of the new order was an eight-pointed Maltese cross bearing fleurs de lys in the angles and quartered of the colors of both orders (purple and green) bearing on the obverse a representation of Our Lady and on the reverse of Saint Lazarus..
There is a good deal of controversy as to the King's reasons for founding this new order and then joining it to Saint Lazarus. Some historians see it as a move to prove to the Pope that he was now a good Catholic fulfilling the vows he took to create institutions to glorify the Church and the Faith when he abjured Protestantism, .Others hold that the King was being wily and his only desire was to prevent the considerable properties of a moribund Saint Lazarus from falling into the hands of the Hospitallers of Saint John and, in effect to revive Saint Lazarus (which was dissolved by Pope Innocent VIII in 1489). Since over the years he had made several efforts to have the Pope annul the 1489 bull, it is reasonable to assume that the truth lies somewhere in between. Historians of the Order claim that, although they owed allegiance to a common grand master, neither order lost its sovereign identity.

In theory the Order was military, but with the exception of a brief period in the XVIIth century when it manned ten naval frigates it played no military role after it left the Holy Land. It was composed of diplomats, high-level civil servants and members of the titled nobility and was limited to 100 knights. The King was the sovereign head and protector and chose the Grand Master. The Grand Master, however, was only recognized by the Pope as Grand Master of the Order of Our Lady of Mount Carmel and not of Saint Lazarus. During the reign of Louis XVI the Order of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, not the combined orders, was awarded to the top three students of the Royal Military School. The orders were separate though they shared the same Grand Master. Although the Order enjoyed a unique relationship with the French Royal House and was officially under the protection of the King of France, it was never a Royal Order. The King's titles as Sovereign, Founder and Protector meant that he was Sovereign and Founder of Our Lady of Mount Carmel and Protector of Saint Lazarus.

During the French Revolution. a decree of 30 July 1791 suppressed all royal and knightly orders. Another decree the following year confiscated all the Order's properties (the Château de Boigny, the Military Academy, the commanderies and hospitals). Louis, Count of Provence, Grand Master of the Order, who later became Louis XVIII, continued to function in exile and awarded the Order, though sparingly. Supporters point out that while in exile in the Latvian province of Mittau he awarded the Order to Tsars Paul I and Alexander I of Russia, Grand Duke Constantine of Russia, Count Rostopchine and General de Fersen... They maintain that he even created an hereditary commandery in Sweden for Chev. Olof Nilson which is still in existence. When the Count of Provence returned to France from exile to reign as Louis XVIII, he gave up the magistracy of the Order and became Protector, as had his predecessors, but appointed no grand master.
Shortly after Louis acceded to the throne in 1814, Napoleon escaped from Elba and returned to France, forcing the King to leave Paris again to seek refuge in Ghent. During this period and after he returned to France, circumstances did not permit the King to summon a Chapter General to elect a Grand Master. The Order was governed by a Lieutenant-General, the Duc de Châtre, assisted by M. Silvestre, the Herald, M. Dacier, the historiographer, and Father Picot, a chaplain from Versailles.

King Louis XVIII, the Protector, and the Duc de Châtre both died in 1824. King Charles X succeeded his brother and took the title of Protector, and left the Order to be governed by a Council of Officers, headed by the marquis d'Autichamps, and the Council of (hereditary) Commanders. Recruitment slowly resumed and promotions were made. In 1830 Charles X abdicated, and with his de jure successor, the young Duc de Bordeaux, who reigned from 2 to 7 August 1830 as Henri V, went into exile. King Henri V was the last de jure royal Protector of the Order. The Order did not enjoy the protection of the new king and was not listed thereafter in the royal Almanac. From 1830 the Order of Saint Lazarus was governed by a Council of Officers. The knights and hospitallers of the Order felt it was necessary for the Order to have a Protector. Patriarch Maximos III Malzoum had for years been acquainted with the Order of St Lazarus. In 1821-23, whilst Archbishop of Myra, he spent three years living in France, where, with the support of King Louis XVIII, he founded the Greek Catholic church of Our Lady of Myra. While living in Paris he brought the sufferings of Eastern Catholics to the attention of Louis XVIII and other members of the Order of Saint Lazarus.

Now Patriarch since 1833, Maximos III Malzoum came to France again in 1841, after visiting Pope Gregory XVI in Rome. The Knights and Hospitallers of the Order of St Lazarus made contact with the Patriarch during his second sojourn in Paris and asked him to be the Spiritual Protector of the Order. He accepted for himself and for his successors. The knights and hospitallers of the Order of St Lazarus, now confident that their traditions would be maintained, continued their charitable work, especially for the benefit of Christians in the East. Under the spiritual authority of the Greek Catholic Patriarch, there was cautious recruitment to the Order, so that by 1850 it numbered some twenty knights. Among the Eastern prelates appointed to the Order were, notably, the Greek Catholic Archbishops Clement of Beirut (who became Patriarch in 1856), Msgr. Agapi Dumani (appointed in 1864) and Msgr. Antoine Sabbagh (appointed in 1871). In the West, recruitment of new members was restricted by the Patriarch's position vis-à-vis the Ottoman Empire. Knights appointed up to the end of the 19th century included (in 1853) Admiral Alphonse Hamelin, who commanded the Black Sea squadron during the Crimean War, became Minister for the Navy and was Grand Chancellor of the Legion of Honour when he died in 1860. In the same year, Admiral Louis Edouard BouëtWillaumez, who became an Imperial Senator and died in 1871; in 1863: Comte Louis François du Mesnil de Maricourt, who became French Consul at Larnaca in Cyprus and died in 1865 while ministering to cholera victims; Comte Paul de Poudenx, who died in 1894; the Rev Abbé Jean Tanski, who came to France after taking part in the Polish uprising, lived at Paris (where he was attached to the parish of Sainte Marie-des-Batignolles), later became Almoner of the Order, contributed to its maintenance and died in 1913; in 1865: Comte Jules Marie d'Anselme de Puisaye, a zouave in the Papal armies; the Vicomte de Boisbaudry in 1875; Baron Yves de Constancin in 1896, who was later to become commander of the Hospitaller Nobles of St Lazarus, a knight of the Order of Isabella the Catholic and of Saint Anne of Russia. A man of letters, he founded the Association of Parliamentary Journalists and was the director of the Revue Internationale, dying in 1914. In 1880, Comte Jules Marie d'Anselme de Puisaye, a Hospitaller Knight of St Lazarus, living at the time in Tunisia and desirous of involving the Order in a charitable and hospitaller project, founded in Tunis the Association de Ia Croix Verte, a society for aid to the injured and sick.

In 1902, the Greek Melkite Archbishop of Saint-Jean-d'Acre, Msgr. Cyrille Ghea, a member of the Order, became Patriarch Cyril VIII. Under his aegis, new members joined the Order, among them Msgr. Gregoire Haggear, his successor as Melkite Archbishop of Saint- Jean-d'Acre, Paul Watrin, Paul Beugnot, Charles Otzenberger, Jean-Paul Eyscher, Alexandre Gallery de la Tremblaye, Jean Georges de Guillet de Pardes de Fleurelles.

In 1910, the Patriarch, on Canon Tanski's advice, decided to re- establish the Order's Chancellery in France, its historic seat. A council of the Order was appointed: Paul Watrin, an advocate at the Appeal Court in Paris, was appointed Chancellor; Paul Beugnot as the Judge of Arms and Canon Tanski as Chaplain. After this reorganisation Patriarch Cyril VIII wrote a long letter, dated 3 June 1911 from Damascus, to the Chancellor, in which he discussed the role of the Eastern Church in which the Order was interested, and concluded:"Finally, as a pledge of our recognition and affection, we gran.t our blessing to all the Order.

There is some confusion about the name the Order gave itself at that time. Guy Coutant de Saisseval, Grand Chancellor of the Paris Obedience, stated that it was the "Nobiliary Association of the Knights of Saint Lazarus of Jerusalem". The late Paul Bertrand de La Grassière, the Order's modern historian, on the other hand, wrote in 1932, that it never took on that title but was called "Order of Noble Knights of Saint Lazarus of Jerusalem and our Lady of Mercy."
After the First World War erupted in 1914, new upheavals battered the institution of Saint Lazarus. In the Near East, the Turkish Government massacred Christians, sentenced bishops to imprisonment and sentenced Patriarch Cyril VIJI to death because of his opposition to the Ottoman government. He evaded death by escaping to Egypt, where he died at Ramleh on 11 January 1916.

When the Ottoman Empire was defeated, Demetrios I Cadi was elected Patriarch on 29 March 1919, and became the new Spiritual Protector of the Order of St Lazarus. Under his protectorate, recruitment resumed, Canon Pierracini became Chaplain of the Order and the marquis de l'Église de Férier de Félix became Judge of Arms. The Patriarch died on 25 October 1925, and Cyril IX Mogabgab was elected Patriarch 8 December 1925. He was a great Francophile and a Commander of the Legion of Honour. The Order developed under his spiritual protection, and on 17 March 1926, the Patriarch wrote a lengthy letter ferom Beirut to the members of the Order, in which he said:"The work of the recruitment of priests and their support in poverty-stricken villages.., accomplished by my beloved hospitaller sons of St Lazarus of Jerusalem, is a work of essentially missionary character and worthy of their traditions. God will assuredly reward them a hundredfold, for they shall have the merit of saving thousands of souls for God. In especially commending all these endeavours to you, I send to you and to all your confrères in the Order my paternal benediction...

On 10 June 1926, Msgr. Attié, the Melkite Patriarch's archimandrite and rector of the Church of Saint Julian the Poor in Paris, was installed as Chaplain of the Order. Recruitment intensified over the next two years. The year 1927 saw the official constitution under French law of the Association Française des Hospitaliers de Saint-Lazare, which then took the name of Association Française des Chevaliers de Saint-Lazare and which is now the Hospitaliers de Saint-Lazare de Jerusalem. The marquis de l'Église de Férier de Felix became its president. In the same year,
In 1929 the Order continued its onward progress. More than fifty people, French and foreign, joined its ranks, among whom were Cardinal Lienart, Bishop of Lille, Cardinal Hayes, Archbishop of New York; Msgr Dub. Dubowski, Bishop of Luck and Zytornec, General de Castelnau, Admiral Lacaze, General Weygand, don Francisco de Borbón y de Borbón, the Duc de Clermont-Tonnerre, the marquis de Migré, the marquis de Bellevue and Colonel Raoul Hospital. This period also saw increased recruitment outside France, notably in Spaln and Poland.

In the same year, the Order published an edition of its Rules and Statutes, which recapitulated the Order's ancient customs whilst adapting them to modern times and relying upon the basis of the Fundamental Statute of the Knights and Hospitallers which had been drawn up in 1841 at the time of the resumption of the links between the Knights and Hospitallers and the Melkite Patriarchate; articles on the Hospitallers of St Lazarus were published in various journals and conferences were held on the subject.

The expansion of the Order in Europe was so successful that it decided to explore the possibilities in the New World. Here again the Order thrived; among those received were no less than four American Cardinals and one Bishop, who accepted the Order's Ecclesiastical Grand Cross. A former Chief Justice on New York's Supreme Court was awarded its Grand Cross. We know that the Presidents of the Dominican Republic, Haiti and Brazil were honored by, and officially recognized, the Order.

In 1930 officers of the Order asked don Francisco de Borbón y de Ia Torre, Duke of Seville, Grand Bailiff of the Order for Spain, to assume the governance of the Order, with the title of Lieutenant-General of the Grand Magistracy. The Duke, a direct descendant of the kings of Spain and France, who distinguished himself on the field of battle during the Spanish Civil War and was known as the "Hero of Malaga," accepted the office. He worked for the revitalization of the Order by rallying the knights to its traditional double mission: aid to lepers and collaboration in the defense of the Christian Faith. By a unanimous vote in 1935 he was elected Grand Master, re-establishing the office, vacant since 1814.

After the Second World War the Order's expansion reached its zenith. Membership grew as did its charitable missions. The Duke of Seville melded some of the Order's ancient traditions with modern reforms with evident success. The Order, wishing to revert to its original mission, became actively involved in the care of lepers in Spain. In 1952 the Duke of Seville died. His son and co-adjutor, don Francisco Enrique de Borbón y de Borbón, was named Lieutenant General of the Grand Magistracy and elected Grand Master six years later. Because he was a serving officer in the Spanish army and resided in Spain, he was unable to devote himself fully to the Order. In 1956, he appointed Pierre Timoléon de Cossé-Brissac, twelth Duke of Brissac, a member since 1954, Administrator General of the Order. This move eventually resulted in new fragmentation of the Order.

The French administration complained that Lt. Colonel don Francisco Enrique de Borbón y de Borbón, the Grand Master, was increasingly tied up by his military and personal obligations and was unable to fulfill his commitments, and that a de facto vacancy existed in the grand magistracy.
Don Francisco immediately issued decrees annulling the appointments of the Duc de Brissac as Administrator-General and the other members of the Paris administration and reassumed the grand magistracy. The Parisians paid no attention to the decrees. They convened the membership in a Chapter General to depose Don Francisco and elected H.R.H. Prince Charles Phillip of Orleans, Duc de Nemours, Duc de Vendôme, Duc d'Alençon and First Prince of the Blood of France, as Grand Master. They easily accomplished their aims and created the second scission in the Order at the negligible cost of losing the Spanish jurisdiction which understandably remained loyal to don Francisco. Thus there were now two Grand Masters, the Duc de Nemours in Paris and don Francisco in Madrid, who, as a consolation prize was named Grand Master Emeritus of the Order and Grand Prior of the Spanish Grand Priory by the members in Paris. The Supreme Council re-established the Grand Magistracy at Boigny, returning it to the status it held for 500 years before the French Revolution. Lt. Col. Robert Gayre of Gayre and Nigg was given responsibility for propagation of the Order in Britain and the Americas.

The Duc de Nemours was educated in England and an ardent anglophile. He married Miss Margaret Watson, an American lady from Virginia, and the couple spoke English at home. It was only natural that he and Gayre, the Commissioner-General for the English-speaking world, would soon become fast friends. This was resented by the Administrator General of the Order and his entourage, and forebode another storm. The Duc de Nemours appointed Col. Gayre Grand Referendary of the Order to replace the deceased marquis de Cardenas de Montehermoso, which provoked the wrath of Brissac and his staff. This was tantamount to turning over the control of the Order to Gayre, which was totally unacceptable to Paris.

The Duc de Brissac once again convened a Chapter-General and deposed the Duc de Nemours. This time the move was much more costly because Gayre, who had been active in recruiting in the English-speaking countries, took with him more than half of the Order's membership, with the exception of Canada. The members in Paris appointed the Duc de Brissac Supreme Head of the Order, without naming him Grand Master.

Gayre and the Duc de Nemours moved their faction's headquarters to the island of Malta and the appointed the Grand Master's nephew, Prince Michael of France, co-adjutor with right of succession to the Grand Magistracy. Gayre continued to travel and recruit extensively
The Duc de Nemours died suddenly in Paris in 1970 and the group on Malta found itself without a Grand Master. Prince Michael of France, the co-adjutor temporarily assumed the duties until a permanent replacement could be found. It was not long before Gayre decided to call upon don Francisco de Borbón in Madrid and propose to him that he return to the head of the largest faction in the Order. Don Francisco would be Grand Master, his seat would be in Madrid and he would have direct control over the Spanish jurisdiction. This was the fourth scission but it resulted in the Order's being reduced to two obediences, one known as the Paris obedience and the other, for convenience's sake called the Malta obedience because the Order's Grand Chancellory was situated there, and because Gayre maintained a residence on the island.

Maintaining a Grand Magistery in one country and a headquarters in another was bound to bring on problems, especially when the lines of communication between the Chancery and the Grand Magistery were hampered by the lack of a common language. In this case the Grand Master spoke only Spanish and French and Gayre spoke only English. Admittedly the Grand Chancellor, Amato Gauci, did have an assistant who was familiar with Spanish, but the latter's duties as a Maltese civil servant left him little time for the affairs of the Grand Chancellory. While there were no official contacts betweeen the two obediences during this period, members of the rank and file of each made efforts to convince their leaderships that the Order be reunified, if for no other reason than to better be able to withstand the attacks against the divided Saint Lazarus made by that segment of the European press which covered the activities of the European nobility, and others who specialized in heraldry and genealogy. Tentative contacts between members of each obedience were made, and it looked as if each leadership was coming around to the general principle of a reunification. The Canadians who had gone over to the Paris side and those Canadians who remained loyal to don Francisco decided to set an example and joined forces, pledging allegiance temporarily to a commonly elected Grand Prior of Canada. The Americans, who had been urging a reunification for some time, helped to arbitrate and welcomed this first step.

Dissatisfaction arose over the administration of the Order in Spain. Gayre, because he had delegated authority to the Grand Chancellor, Amato Gauci, and his assistant, was unable to control matters. The Grand Chancellor was perfectly aware of what was happening in the Grand Magistracy but, personally loyal to Don Francisco, did not see fit to influence him. Gayre, realizing his own lack of control decided that the problem required radical action and vowed to jettison the Grand Master and rejoin the Paris Obedience.

His Beatitude Georges Hakim, MAXIMOS V, Melkite Patriarch of Jerusalem, Alexandria and Antioch and All the East, the Spiritual Protector, agreed to head a reunification committee to which don Francisco refused to name members, sensing a coup. Preliminary meetings took place at Philadelphia, Paris and London, to which Malta sent "observers." These deliberations resulted in a meeting in Washington in 1984 which was attended by the marquis de Brissac, representing his father, the Grand Master of the Paris Obedience, and don Francisco de Borbón y de Borbón, representing Malta. A declaration of intent to unify was drawn up at Washington which provided for both grand masters to step down and become "Grand Masters Emeriti" so that an election could be held to select a grand master for a unified Order. The representatives of Paris signed the declaration, don Francisco refused to sign, saying he had to consult his advisers and constituents on return to Madrid.

The Patriarch called for a chapter general at Oxford in 1986, which don Francisco refused to attend and ordered his followers to boycott. The Duc de Brissac gave up the reins of his obedience to his son, the marquis de Brissac, who was one of the three nominees at the Oxford election. The Malta Grand Master and the Prince zur Lippe were the others. The marquis won handily and was acclaimed as the 48th Grand Master by an overjoyed assemblage, who thought they had at last healed the breach.

The Malta Grand Master refused to acknowledge the validity of the election and resolved to carry on as before. Instead of a reunification, a realignment occurred. The Paris obedience acquired the largest (more than 500 members) and richest of the Order's jurisdictions, that of the United States, as well those of England, Lochore (Gayre's personal jurisdiction), Holland, and several others. Germany, Austria, Italy and Hungary remained divided.

After the failed attempt at reunion, tempers flared at first, but as they gradually cooled down, members of good will on both sides made new overtures. The members in the U.S. belonging to the Malta Obedience are incorporated in Paris Obedience Grand Priory of America for administrative purposes. A member of the "Commandery of Malta" thus created is the Hospitaller of the American Grand Priory. Name calling and threats of legal action have virtually ceased, and both divisions have turned to their charitable efforts which both feel must be significant in order to justify their claim to be a Order of Chivalry

SUMMARY

The Order of Saint Lazarus is an cumenical organization of Christian hospitallers whose spirit goes back to the Holy Land and the Crusades. The United looks to His Beatitude Gregory III, Greek Melkite Catholic Patriarch of Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem and all the East, for spiritual support as the constitutional Spiritual Protector.

With the exception of the Teutonic Order, the Order of Saint Lazarus is the smallest of the orders so far mentioned. Its membership numbers approximately 7000 members in Grand Priories, Priories, Commanderies and Delegations in the five continents. The Order's traditional humanitarian activities are in the field of leprosy. It maintains leprosaria and dispensaries and sends medical supplies to various medical missions in Africa, and in the Pacific islands. A recent thrust of the American Grand Priory is the support of organ donation, led by its Hospitaller, the Deputy Surgeon General of the US. The Order is also involved in geriatric care for the needy, it operates several Volunteer Ambulance Corps including one for young drug addicts and directly supports a medical and religious mission in Kenya. Among the more noteworthy projects undertaken by the Order has been the weekly transport of basic food and medical supplies to Poland, Russia, Jugoslavia, Macedonia, Kosovo and the Asia Relief Project after the Tsunami disaster in Indonesia on the isle of Nias.

There are two categories of membership in the Order: Justice, for individuals able to submit nobiliary proofs, and Magistral Grace for those unable to do so. Christians may be admitted in the following grades: Member, Officer, Commander, Knight or Dame, Knight or Dame Commander, Knight or Dame Grand Cross. As a mark of the Grand Master's special esteem, the Order may also award a Collar to a head of State and very occasionally to its high dignitaries. The Order also confers decorations of merit to its members and to individuals not necessarily members of the Order who have contributed, by their service, to its humanitarian work.

The order's badge is a green Maltese cross edged in gold, worn in different sizes according to rank. The decoration of merit is a green cross flory, with crossed swords in the angles, in the center of which is a circle surrounding the order's green Maltese cross on a white background. The badge depends from a green ribbon edged with purple. It is awarded in the same grades as that of the order. In the English-speaking jurisdictions of the Order members, use post-nominal initials indicating their rank (MLJ,OLJ,CLJ,KLJ,GCLJ) on internal correspondence, and in the ranks of KLJ and above refer to and address one another as "Chevalier".

References:
1. Les Chevaliers de Saint Lazare de 1789 à 1930, Guy Coutant de Saisseval, Drukkerij Weimar by the Hague, undated
2. An Up-Date to the History of the Order 1983-1987, James J. Algrant y Cañete, privately printed, undated
3. "Another View of the History of the Order of Saint Lazarus," James J. Algrant, "Caltrap's Corner,"(webpage )
3. The Catholic Encyclopedia, 1913, electronic version by New Advent, Inc., 1998

Conventions:
1. French titles in French not capitalized except "Duc." Titles in English all upper case.
2. Spanish title "don" not capitalized except at beginning of sentence; in English, is capitalized.



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17 décembre. Saint Lazare de Béthanie, Ier évêque de Marseille et martyr. Ier siècle.

 

 

 

" Fortis ligatum mors tenet,

Sed fortior dilectio.

Amore victa mors fugit,

Vitamque vita contulit."

 

" Dans les formidables étreintes de la mort,

Lazare gémissait captif ;

Plus fort que la mort, l'amour a vaincu sa rivale,

Et une vie nouvelle, puisée à la source même de la vie est venue ranimer cette victime de la mort."

Propre de Marseille.

 

 

La résurrection de saint Lazare. Sebastino Luciani del Piombo. XVIe.

L'Evangile renferme un grand nombre de récit pleins de grandeur et de simplicité : nous ne sachions pas qu'il en soit de plus calme et de plus puissant, de plus familier et de plus divin, que celui de la résurrection de Lazare, l'ami de Jésus.

 

" Il y avait un malade appelé Lazare, qui était du bourg de Béthanie, où demeuraient Marie (Marie-Madeleine) et sa soeur Marthe. C'était cette Marie qui avait répandu des parfums sur le Seigneur et qui lui avait essuyé les pieds avec ses cheveux. Lazare, le malade était son frère.

 

Les deux soeurs envoyèrent donc vers Jésus :

" Seigneur, lui mandèrent-elles, celui que vous aimez est malade."

"Cette maladie ne va point à la mort, répondit Jésus à cette nouvelle ; mais elle advient pour la gloire de Dieu, c'est-à-dire afin que le fils de Dieu soit glorifié par son moyen."

 

 

Résurrection de saint Lazare. Fleur des histoires. Jean Mansel. XVe.

 

Or Jésus aimait Marthe, et Marie sa soeur, et Lazare. Et pourtant, lorsqu'il eut appris qu'il était malade, il demeura, malfré cela, encore deux jours dans le lieu où il était. Après avoir laisser écouler ce laps de temps :

" Retournons en Judée, dit-il à ses disciples.

- Maître, lui répondirent-ils, les Juifs vous cherchaient pour vous lapider, et vous voulez de nouveau aller vous mettre entre leurs mains ?"

" N'y a-t-il pas douze heures au jour ? Luer répartit Jésus. Si quelqu'un marche durant le jour, il ne trébuche point parce qu'il voit la lumière de ce monde ; mais s'il marche pendant la nuit, il trébuche, parce que la lumière n'est pas en lui."

 

 

Grandes heures d'Anne de Bretagne. Jean Bourdichon. XVe.

 

Puis il ajouta :

" Notre ami Lazare dort ; mais je vais pour le secouer de son sommeil."

"Seigneur, lui dirent alors les disciples, s'il dort, il sera sauvé."

Mas Jésu avait parlé de sa mort ; et ils crurent qu'il parlait du sommeil ordinaire.

Alors Jésus expliqua ouvertement :

" Lazare est mort, et je me félicite à cause de vous, de ne m'être point trouvé là-bas, afin que vous croyiez. Maintenant, allons vers lui."

Sur ce mot, Thomas, surnommé Dydime, s'adressant aux autres disciples :

" Et nous aussi allons ! Et nous aussi allons ! Afin de mourir avec lui !"

 

" Jésus étant arrivé, il trouva Lazare enseveli depuis quatre jours dans le tombeau. Et, comme Béthanie n'était éloignée de Jérusalem que d'environ quinze stades, beaucoup de Juifs étaient venus vers Marthe et Marie pour les consoler au sujet de la perte de leur frère. Marthe, dès qu'elle eût appris que Jésus arrivait, courut au-devant de lui, cepednant que Marie demeurait à la maison.

" Seigneur, dit Marthe Jésus, si vous eussiez été ici, mon frère ne serait point mort ; mais je sais que, même en ce moment, tout ce que vous demanderez à Dieu, Dieu vous l'accordera."

Jésus lui répondit :

" Votre frère ressuscitera.

- Oui, je sais qu'il ressuscitera à la résurrection du dernier jour.

- Je suis la Résurrection et la Vie. Celui qui croit en moi, fût-il mort, vivra. Et pour toujours ne mourra point, quiconque vit et croit en moi. Croyez-vous en cela ?

- Oui, Seigneur, je crois que vous êtes le Christ, le Fils du Dieu vivant qui est venu en ce monde."

 

 

La résurrection de saint Lazare. Petrus Christus. XVe.

 

Ayant dit ces paroles, elle s'éloigne et va appeler sa soeur :

" Le Maître est là, et il te demande, lui dit-elle tout bas."

A ces mots, Marie se lève précipitemment et va vers Jésus ; car il n'était pas encore entré dans la bourgade, et se trouvait toujours en ce même endroit où Marthe l'avait rencontré.

 

" Cependant, les Juifs qui étaient avec Marie d&ans la même maison et la consolaient, l'ayant vue se lever si vite et partir, la suivirent.

" Elle va sans doute pleurer au tombeau, dirent-ils."

A peine arrivée à l'endroit où était Jésus, Marie, l'apercevant, se précipita à ses pieds.

" Seigneur, dit-elle, si vous eussiez été ici, mon frère ne serait point mort."

Jésus, la voyant pleurer, et les Juifs venus avec elle pleurer aussi, fut saisit par le frémissement de l'Esprit et se troubla lui-même.

" Où l'avez-vous déposé ?

- Venez et voyez."

Et Jésus pleura.

Les Juifs dirent alors :

" Voyez combien il l'aimait !"

" Eh quoi ! Reprenaient cependant quelques-uns d'entre eux, ne pouvait-il donc pas empêcher qu'il mourût, lui qui a ouvert les yeux de l'aveugle-né ?"

 

 

La résurrection de saint Lazare. Maître de Coetivy. XVe.

 

" Jésus donc, frémissant à nouveau en lui-même, vint au sépulcre. C'était une caverne dont l'entrée était fermé par une pierre tumulaire. Jésus dit alors :

" Otez la pierre !

" Seigneur, lui dit Marthe, il sent déjà mauvais, car il est mort depuis quatre jours.

- Ne vous ai-je pas assuré que si vous croyez, vous verrez la gloire de Dieu ?"

Et ils otèrent la pierre.

 

Alors Jésus, élevant les yeux vers le ciel :

" Mon Père, je Vous rends grâce de ce que vous m'avez écouté. Pour moi, je savais bien que vous m'écoutez toujours ; mais je parle ainsi à cause de ce peuple qui m'environne, afin que l'on ait foi que c'est vous qui m'avez envoyé."

Et, ayant dit ces paroles, il cria à pleine voix :

" Lazare, sors du tombeau !"

Et soudain le mort se leva et apparut. Ses pieds et ses mains étaient liés par des bandelettes, et son visage enveloppé du suaire.

" Déliez-le et laissez-le aller, dit Jésus."

Alors, plusieurs des Juifs qui étaient venus voir Marthe et Marie, et qui se trouvaient témoin de ce que Jésus avait fait, crurent en lui."

 

 

La résurrection de saint Lazare. Pseudo-Monvearni. XVe.

En rappelant Lazare à la vie, Jésus voulait bien moins conserver un ami que se ménager un propagateur zélé de ses sublimes enseignements. La vocation du nouvel élu était miraculeuse, et il ne devait point y faiblir ; aussi bien la persécution est l'épreuve ordinaire des vocations éevées : elle ne manqua point à l'ami de Jésus. Dix ans environ après l'Ascension de Notre Seigneur Jésu-Christ, Lazare fut jeté par les Juifs sur un vaisseau sans voiles et sans rames, avec ses soeurs Marthe et Marie-Madeleine, avec sainte Marcelle, saint Maximin et d'autres Chrétiens.

 

Exposée ainsi sans ressources à la merci des flots, cette frêle embarcation devait, dans l'esprit des Juifs, sombrer à quelques pas du rivage et engloutir avec elle toutes les espérances de la troupe naissante des fidèles.

Mais les méchants furent déçus et le vaisseau qu'ils avaient voués au naufrage, conduit par la main de Celui qui avait dirigé l'Arche de Noé, aborda heureusement sur la terre hospitalière de Provence. Marseille lui ouvrit son port, et acclama Lazare son évêque.

 

 

Saint Lazare arrivant en Provence avec ses soeurs sainte Marthe

et sainte Marie-Madeleine, sainte Marcelle et saint Maximin.

Speculum historiale. V. de Beauvais. XVe.

 

Le nouvel apôtre planta sur cette terre le drapeau de la foi, et autour de cet étendard du Christ, il travailla pendant trente années entières à réunir une foule compacte de néophytes. Le paganisme s'effraya des progrès de l'Evangile, et les infidèles s'étant emparés de la personne de Lazare, le conduisirent devant le juge de la ville. Celui-ci le somma de sacrifier sur-le-champ aux idoles : s'il refusait, il lui faudrait mourir. Le vénrable vieillard répondit qu'il était serviteur de Jésus-Christ, par lequel il avait déjà été ressuscité une fois, et qu'il ne reconnaitrait jamais d'autre Dieu que lui, avec son Père, Créateur de toutes choses. Cette confession si généreuse mérita au binheureux apôtre la palme du martyre.

On lui déchira le corps avec des peignes de fer, on jeta sur ses épaules une cuirasse de fer embrasée, on le coucha violemment, pour être rôti, sur un gril rouge de feu, sur sa poitrine on décocha plusieurs flèches qui néanmoins furent impuissantes à pénétrer les chairs ; enfin, sa tête roula sous le glaive du bourreau.

 

 

La résurrection de saint Lazare. Pierre-Paul Rubens. XVIIe.

 

On représente saint Lazare :

1. sortant du tombeau à la voix de Notre Seigneur Jésus-Christ ;

2. en costume épiscopal, tenant sur la main une petite bière qui rappelle sa résurrection ;

3. en groupe avec ses deux soeurs Marthe et Marie-Madeleine ;

4. abandonné sur la mer dans un vaisseau désempara.

 

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Ordre de Saint Lazare de Jérusalem.

 

Le Grand Prieuré de France

 


Avant les croisades, il existait à Jérusalem, en dehors des murailles de la Ville Sainte, un hôpital pour les lépreux, placé sous l’invocation de Saint-Lazare. Dépendant de la juridiction des Patriarches grecs melkites de Jérusalem, il était desservi par des moines arméniens suivant la règle de Saint-Basile le Grand. L’Ordre de Saint-Lazare est issu de cet hôpital.

En 1902 l’Archevêque grec melkite de Saint-Jean d’Acre, Monseigneur Cyrille Ghea, qui était membre de Saint-Lazare, devint le Patriarche CYRILLE VIII. (1902-1916).


En 1910, celui-ci projeta sur les conseils du Chanoine Tanski, de rétablir la chancellerie de l’Ordre en France, siège traditionnel de celui-ci. Un conseil de l’Ordre fut nommé, celui-ci désigna le chancelier en la personne de Paul Watrin, avocat à la cour d’appel de Paris, Paul Beugnot en qualité de Juge d’Armes, et le Chanoine Tanski comme Aumônier.

Les chevaliers Hospitaliers de Saint-Lazare commencèrent alors à se structurer, la liberté d’association existant en France depuis 1901, ils prirent le nom : d’« Association nobiliaire des chevaliers de Saint-Lazare de Jérusalem », dont le Patriarche était l’administrateur général. Le Juge d’Armes assura le recrutement. Les nominations des nouveaux membres de l’Ordre étaient publiées dans le bulletin de la Société Héraldique de France. L’action des chevaliers Hospitaliers se concrétisa alors par l’aide aux églises d’Orient.

Après la défaite de l’empire Ottoman, un nouveau Patriarche fut élu le 29 mars 1919, en la personne du Patriarche DEMETRIOS Ier CADI (1919-1925) qui devint le nouveau protecteur spirituel de l’Ordre de Saint-Lazare. Le recrutement reprit, le Chanoine Pierracini devint Aumônier de l’Ordre, et en 1921, le Marquis de l’Eglise de Férier de Félix devint Juge d’Armes. Le Patriarche décéda le 25 octobre 1925.

Le Patriarche CYRILLE IX MOGHABGHAB, élu le 8 décembre 1925, confirmé par le Souverain Pontife le Pape Pie XI le 21 juin 1926, fut le nouveau Protecteur spirituel de l’Ordre de Saint-Lazare. Sous son protectorat, l’Ordre accrut son développement. Le 10 juin 1926 Monseigneur Attié, Archimandrite du patriarcat Melkite et recteur de l’église Saint Julien le Pauvre de Paris fut installé comme Aumônier de l’Ordre.

En 1927 fut constitué dans le cadre de la loi française « l’Association Française des Hospitaliers de Saint-Lazare de Jérusalem » qui prit par la suite le nom « d’Association Française des Chevaliers de Saint-Lazare de Jérusalem » qui aujourd’hui en France est dénommé « Hospitaliers de Saint-Lazare de Jérusalem ». Le président en fut le Marquis de l’Eglise de Ferrier de Félix premier Grand Prieur de France.

Deux commanderies héréditaires historiques de l’Ordre de Saint-Lazare subsistèrent dans le Gand Prieuré de France : la commanderie héréditaire historique de la Motte des Courtils, la commanderie héréditaire historique de Saint-François de Bailleul. Existe actuellement la Préceptorie de Boigny, ancien siège magistral de l’Ordre de 1290 à 1790 et siège historique de l’Ordre.

Le Gand Prieuré de France exerça alors son activité charitable et hospitalière en faveur des chrétiens d’Orient par l’intermédiaire du Patriarcat Grec Melkite afin d’être répartie selon les besoins.

En 1939, éclata le deuxième conflit mondial. Au début des hostilités, les membres de France lancèrent un appel en vue de constituer des comités de secours. Il fut organisé un service d’ambulance pour le front « l’Anglo-américan-Corps » arborant la croix de l’Ordre de Saint- Lazare et l’appellation « Service Hospitalier de l’Ordre de Saint-Lazare », celui-ci sera opérationnel jusqu’à l’armistice de juin 1940.

A partir de 1942, pendant l’occupation allemande fut organisé un Corps de Volontaires Secouristes de l’Ordre de Saint-Lazare, pour porter secours aux blessés lors des bombardements, celui-ci sera en service jusqu’à la libération en 1945. En 1947 l’Etat marquera sa reconnaissance envers ce Corps, par la remise d’une citation à l’Ordre de la Nation.

En 1944, le Comte et Prince de Béarn et de Chalais, Henri de Galard de Brassac, Grand d’Espagne, comte de Brassac et de Marsan, chevalier de Malte et Camérier secret de SS, fut placé à la tête du Grand Prieuré de France et en assura la charge.

L’action hospitalière se développa encore par la création d’un dispensaire qui fut donné à la paroisse de Saint-Ambroise de Paris et par l’aide à la construction d’un pavillon de chirurgie à l’hôpital Saint-Joseph de Paris. Le Grand Prieur Prince de Béarn et de Chalais décéda le 26 avril 1947.

La charge de Grand Prieur fut laissée vacante. Le Grand Prieuré de France fut administré par le Grand Capitulaire de l’Ordre, Paul Bertrand de la Grassière par décret du Grand Maître Don François de Bourbon Duc de Séville du 10 février 1948, jusqu’en 1954.

Succédant au prince de Béarn et Chalais à la charge de Grand Prieur de France, le Duc Pierre de Cossé 12ème Duc de Brissac, ayant accepté la présidence de l’Association française de l’Ordre, et ayant reçu du Prince François de Bourbon et Bourbon Grand Maître de l’Ordre la dignité de Grand Prieur de France, le 25 avril 1954, il sera élu Grand Maître de l’Ordre de Saint Lazare en 1976.

L’aide aux lépreux reprit sa place dans l’œuvre hospitalière par la collaboration avec le comité de la fondation Raoul Follereau présidé par le Général Charbonneau, est manifestée en 1958 et 1959 par deux dons de 50 000 frs. Puis, lors des inondations qui ravagèrent Fréjus, un don de 50 000 frs fut envoyé le 16 décembre 1959 à Monseigneur Antonin Martin supérieur du Grand Séminaire de Fréjus et Toulon afin de subvenir aux besoins les plus urgents.

Par la suite l’action charitable du Grand Prieuré de France se poursuit par l’édification au Sénégal du centre lépreux Saint-Lazare de Djifangor et son entretien, par l’envoi de médicaments et l’entretien de la léproserie des Saints-Anges à Ouidah au Benin, et divers missions hospitalières au Liban, Madagascar, Cote-d’Ivoire etc.

La Gouvernance du Grand Prieuré de France était composée :

Du Grand Maître
Du Référendaire
Du Chancelier
Du Vice-chancelier
De l’Adjoint référendaire De l’Hospitalier

Du Trésorier
Des Secrétaires Généraux

M. le Duc Pierre de Brissac
M. Paul Bertrand de la Grassière M. Guy Coutant de Saisseval Prince Christian Dedeyan
M. Paul de la Croix-Guilliamat Professeur J. Lavillaureix
Comte F. de Bregeas Professeur J. Dalion
M. Jacques Edouard Philippon

Des membres du conseil : S.E. le Duc de Luynes, S.E. le Duc de Levis-Mirepoix, S.A.S. le Prince et Duc Armand d’Arenbert, le Prince Charles Dedeyan, Colonel Jacobson, le Comte Ryard de Parcey, M. C. Visinet des Presles, M. M. Fautz, Capitaine de Corvette (R) des Courtils de Bessy, M. de Geouffre de la Pradelle, le Marquis de Saint Légier de la Saussaye, Lieutenant-Colonel Robert Potet.

Figurent également parmi les membres de l’Ordre en France d’éminentes personnalités telles des ambassadeurs et des diplomates, des hauts magistrats et professions judiciaires, des professeurs, des généraux, des personnalités du monde des affaires, et des représentants de l’aristocratie.

En 1985 Monsieur le Duc Pierre de Brissac ayant accepté de renoncer à sa charge de Grand Maître, le Marquis (futur Duc de Brissac) fut reconnu comme 48ème Grand Maître et investit comme tel, le Duc Pierre demeurant Grand Prieur de France. Son Excellence Guy Coutant de Saisseval, Grand Bailli de l’Ordre était chargé de la direction du Grand Prieuré de France. S. E. Pierre de Cossé XII Duc de Brissac décéda à Paris dans sa 94eme année le 4 avril 1993.

Sous la responsabilité du Duc François XIII Duc de Brissac et sous la direction de Son Excellence Guy Coutant de Saisseval, le recrutement et l’action charitable se poursuit par l’envoi de médicaments, d’aliments, de vêtements et de matériels hospitaliers au Liban, Kosovo, Tchéquie, Sénégal, Gabon, Mali, Algérie, Togo, Géorgie, Egypte, Zaïre, Roumanie, Vietnam, Madagascar, par la participation à la construction de l’hôpital Saint Lazare de Nowa-Huta en Pologne, et l’envoi de 6 camions humanitaires en Yougoslavie pendant le conflit des années 1990. De nombreuses commanderies sont formées sur le territoire français.

Depuis le 1 janvier 1995, les Hospitaliers de Saint Lazare figurent sur la liste des Œuvres Non Gouvernementales (ONG) du ministère de la coopération.

En Juin 2002, Son Excellence Guy Coutant de Saisseval qui assurait la direction du Grand Prieuré étant décédé, le Grand Maître François de Cossé Duc de Brissac, nomme pour administrer le Grand Prieuré et en qualité de Vice-Prieur le Chevalier Yves Guibert.

Le 26 octobre 2002, le chapitre du Grand Prieuré de France est convoqué au siège Historique de Boigny, afin d’élire le chef de la juridiction française. Jacqueline de Contades, Duchesse de Brissac, fut élue Grand Prieur de France à la tête du Grand Prieuré de France, pour une durée de quatre ans renouvelable. Le Chevalier Yves Guibert assurant la fonction de Prieur de France. Le recrutement et l’action hospitalière se poursuit en Arménie, Ile Maurice, Togo, Mali, Benin. La structure prieurale, comme elle l’était autrefois, est restaurée selon le découpage des régions et des marches de France. Afin des concrétiser l’une des trois fins de l’Ordre, la spiritualité chrétienne, dès 2005, fut organisée la retraite du Grand Prieuré, chaque année début octobre, dans un monastère Cistercien, sous la responsabilité du Prieuré de Bourgogne et de la Commanderie de Lorraine, animée par le Vice-Chapelain du Grand Prieuré, le révérant Dominique Thiry OCSO.

Le 28 octobre 2006, le chapitre du Grand Prieuré de France est à nouveau convoqué pour l’élection du Grand Prieur. Madame la duchesse de Brissac est réélue pour une durée de quatre ans renouvelable. Monseigneur le Proto Syncelle Dominique Thiry OCSO est nommé Vice-Chapelain du Grand Prieuré de France. L’aide hospitalière se poursuit principalement en Arménie, de jusqu’à présent, par l’approvisionnement en matériels à l’hôpital de Spitak, à l’hôpital d’Yeghegnadzor et en Géorgie pour les populations arméniennes, soit des montants dépassant à ce jour plus de deux millions d’euros.

Le 25 octobre 2010, le chapitre du Grand Prieuré de France est à nouveau convoqué pour l’élection du Grand Prieur de France. Madame la duchesse de Brissac, seule candidate, est à nouveau réélue pour une durée de quatre ans, confirmant encore le chevalier Yves Guibert au poste de Prieur de France.

Armes du Grand Prieuré de France :
Ecu d’argent à la croix de sinople, au franc-quartier de France, soit d’azur à trois fleurs de lys d’or. L’écu est posé sur la croix à huit pointes de sinople et entouré du manteau noir doublé d’hermine portant à senestre la croix à huit pointes de l’Ordre, le tout surmonté de la couronne de l’Ordre.

Le Drapeau :
De tissu blanc (d’argent) à la croix de sinople (verte), au franc-quartier de France, soit d’azur à trois fleurs de lys d’or. Le tissu entouré d’une frange d’or.

Le Sceau :
Rond, représentant un chevalier en armes
et monté, l’épée haute, le caparaçon du cheval et l’écu armories à la croix de sinople, le tout entouré de l’inscription : Ordre Militaire et Hospitalier de Saint Lazare de Jérusalem-Grand Prieuré de France.

Le Cri :
ATAVIS et ARMIS (aux ancêtres et aux armes).

La Devise : Et en guerre et en paix, et sur terre et sur mer.

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  • Gagner de l'Argent (samedi, 22. février 2014 01:31)

    Il y a un bail que je n avais pas eu autant de plaisir avec une lecture de ce niveau !!!

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