Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem
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The Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem, (Latin: Ordo Supremus Militaris Templi Hierosolymitani, OSMTH), is a self-styled order and international NGO. OSMTH is often referred to simply as the Knights Templars but asserts no direct lineage to the original Order.
OSMTH does not officially recognize the claims laid out in the Larmenius Charter as historically valid, but makes a moral and ethical claim to follow in the same spiritual path as the original Order of the Knights Templar.
The self-styled l'Ordre du Temple, founded in France in 1705, claimed to be the continuation of the medieval Knights Templar, using the Larmenius Charter as evidence of its pedigree. The order was officially reconstituted in 1804 by Bernard-Raymond Fabré-Palaprat, and recognized as an Order of Chivalry by its patron Napoleon Bonaparte in 1805; In 1945, Antonio Campello Pinto de Sousa Fontes (1878-1960) claimed that the OSMTH was the continuation of l'Ordre du Temple, Fernando Campello Pinto Pereira de Sousa Fontes (b. 1930) succeeded his father as the head of the order in 1960.
In 1970, a split occurred within the OSMTH when General Antoine (originally Antoni) Zdrojewski was unexpectedly elected as the new Grand Master of the OSMTH at the Convent of Paris in September, 1970. Zdrojewski became the head of one faction of the Order, which he referred to by the French translation: "Ordre Souverain et Militaire du Temple de Jérusalem" (OSMTJ), until his death in 1989. Zdrojewski was succeeded by George Lamirand as the new head of the OSMTJ until his death in 1994. George Lamirand was succeeded by Dr. Nicolas Haimovici Hastier who is the current OSMTJ International Leader today.
In 1997, OSMTH voted to expel Grand Master Fernando de Sousa Fontes from the order. This resulted in another schism with those loyal to Grand Master Fernando de Sousa Fontes forming a new organization presently known as OSMTH-Regency while the remainder of the organization continued on as OSMTH.
While OSMTH rituals and traditions are currently based upon those of the historical Knights Templar, according to its website and their present leader, Grand Master Patrick Rea, there is no direct historical lineage claimed by OSMTH between OSMTH and the 12th century Templars.
In 2001, the Order was accredited by the United Nations Economic and Social Council as a non-governmental organisation, in special consultative status, one of over 2,000 organizations to hold this status. The Order is an associate member of the International Peace Bureau and an affiliate of the International Center for Religion & Diplomacy, which was founded by one of OSMTH's members. In 2014, OSMTH was elected as a board member of CoNGO (Conference of NGOs in consultative status with the United Nations.
The order exists in each country under different jurisdictions. In America, the order is known as the Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem, Inc (this being the English rendering of the Latin name). They should not be confused with a multitude of other self-styled "Knights Templar", or the Masonic Knights Templar.
OSMTH is registered in Geneva, Swiss Reg No: CH-660.1.972777-4 and is in Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations has over 5000 active members in Austria, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, England & Wales, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, Norway, Portugal, Scotland, Serbia and in the United States. OSMTH operates in a number of countries providing humanitarian aid  such as the River Jordan Project that is supported by HM King Abdullah of Jordan.
Christian men who join the organisation are self-styled as "Knights" with the title of Chevalier and females are termed "Dames" with the title of Chevaleresse (or Chevalière). The modern Order claims over 5000 members, allegedly including leaders in the military, business, government and ecclesiastical communities.
Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem (SMOTJ)
The Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem (SMOTJ) is an American autonomous Grand Priory of the Ordo Supremus Militaris Templi Hierosolymitani (OSMTH). branch of the Ordo Supremus Militaris Templi Hierosolymitani. The SMOTJ broke with the OSMTH-Regency in 1995 when it refused to recognize the sovereignty of OSMTH-Regency Grand Master Dom Fernando de Sousa Fontes.
This name Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem (SMOTJ) has been trademarked and is used exclusively in America by the SMOTJ and thus does not refer to the group of organizations tracing lineage to OSMTH but rather to the current OSMTH only.
The royal patron of the SMOTJ is HH Princess Elizabeth of Ysenburg-Büdingen-Wachtersbach (b. 1945). She is the widow of HSH Prince Ferdinand Heinrich of Ysenburg-Büdingen-Wachtersbach and the eldest daughter of Prince Friedrich Ferdinand of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg (1913-1989).
Ordre Souverain et Militaire du Temple de Jérusalem (OSMTJ)
As mentioned in History, OSMTJ was formed by a faction of OSMTH in 1970. It was headed by General Antoine (originally Antoni) Zdrojewski, until his death in 1989. Zdrojewski was succeeded by George Lamirand as the new head of the OSMTJ until his death in 1994. George Lamirand was succeeded by Dr. Nicolas Haimovici Hastier who is the current OSMTJ Grand Master today.
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