It is in the traditions of the history of the various Knightly orders of the Roman Catholic Church, including the Knights of Malta and the Order of St. John, both of medieval Europe, that the Knights of St. John was established, a tradition today’s Knights honor dearly. These men carry a tradition of fidelity to the Church, honor and loyalty among its ranks, and charity and compassion to our communities.
Today’s Catholic fraternal order of the Knights of St. John was officially incorporated May 6, 1886, though its roots run older, amongst a spectrum of Catholic knightly orders of the late 19th century. Its most valued traditions have held constant ever since: inward traditions of loyalty, fidelity, Faith, and honor, and outward traditions like its uniforms and insignia.
Early commanderies could be found in Rochester and Utica, New York, Cleveland, Ohio, Detroit, Michigan, Washington, D.C., and throughout the northeast and Midwest. As the 20th century rolled through its second half, the order spread to our neighbor to the North, Canada, and across the Atlantic, to Europe and Africa. With Commanderies throughout the world, the order has become an international one.
Recently, the Knights of St. John have been found by men searching for a way to deepen their relationship to, and participation in, the Faith of the Catholic Church. An increasing number of Knights of St. John commanderies can be found at parishes that celebrate the Traditional Latin Mass, and the men in uniform present an extraordinary compliment to the beauty of the mass.