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Knights Templar with armor on horse, his


Governing Principles

  • To become a Knight Templar, one must be a Christian by faith.

  • The Order is ecumenical; it does not restrict membership to a single Christian Church.

  • The Order recognizes the Constitution and statutes of the United States and of its several States as sovereign and temporally supreme public law.

  • The Order does not allow its members to act contrary to their obligations to their country.

  • The Order is not a political organization and does not engage in politics.

  • The Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem, Inc. (also referred to as SMOTJ) is not associated in any way with Freemasonry.

There is clearly a growing desire among caring men and women to spread goodness in the world. The Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem is increasingly viewed as a means of doing so; its volunteer base is growing rapidly in terms of both numbers and talent. In order for a growing volunteer organization like SMOTJ to be effective on a large scale, it utilizes the varied talents of all and magnifies the results of their efforts through effective organization-all the while keeping a singular crusading focus.

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Interested in Membership?

The US Order encourages talented, accomplished men and women of high moral character to energetically pursue charitable and civic causes and to improve the Christian presence in the Holy Land. Those who join in such efforts in turn benefit personally from participation in the recovery and perpetuation of the Christian spirit and ideals that impelled the early Templar Knights to dedicate their lives to similar causes. The chivalry, ethics, and rich traditions of this Order shape our focus on those causes today. 

Membership in the Order requires that each candidate be a Christian of any denomination. Membership is offered by invitation only, after a careful screening and interview process indicates that both the individual seeking membership and the Order seeking the best membership possible will benefit thereby. The principal considerations in selecting members are: demonstrated good character, documented accomplishments in life, and obvious commitment to the ideals of the Order. The Order invests membership upon only those men and women who deport themselves in an honorable and chivalrous manner, who will be committed to the Order's values and precepts, and who are Ecumenical in thought. A candidate's involvement in other charitable, military, religious and hereditary organizations provides a means of assessing a candidate's eligibility, as does his or her professional and social accomplishments. 

If you are interested in joining in our good works and you would like to be contacted by an officer of Priory of the Holy Isle to begin the process of determining whether your membership is in our mutual interest, please provide a letter of introduction and resume to to begin the screening process.

Cost, insignia, ranks and events

What are the "costs" of membership? There is an annual fee and an introductory fee that covers the cost for insignia, mantle, administration and the investiture event. But there are other "in-kind-contributions" associated with the membership. Typically, Knights and Dames are successful in their life's work, their families, and in their spiritual life. They understand they have been richly blessed, and recognize that “to who much is given, much is expected”.

The insignia is an enameled Red Patriarchal Cross surmounted by a Golden Crown suspended from a red and black ribbon. The Knight/Dame wears a white robe, lined with red satin and a Red Patriarchal Cross or a Red Cross Patee on the left front. Knights and Dames do have different ranks depending on time of service and achievements. Ranks are Knight/Dame, Knight/Dame Commander, Knight/Dame Grand Officer and Knight/Dame Grand Cross.

Investiture ceremonies are normally held on a Saturday afternoon in a church. On the evening of the investiture, Knights and Dames with family and friends have a gala banquet. To be invested is a life turning experience for many members, and its encouraged to have family and friends there to share the experience. Investitures and gala dinners require formal attire for Knights and Dames. For military, this means “full mess dress”. Wearing of medals for valor, achievement, and service is encouraged. Guests typically dress a little less formally, with dark suit with tie for men and equivalent for ladies

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