Minutes of the Grand Magestry
of the Sovereign Order of St. John of Jerusalem  

Source: The Archives of the British Grand Priory.

The Chairman called the meeting to Order at 10:30 am, those in attendance being H.R.H. Prince Serge Troubetzkoy, Lt. Grand Master and Chairman, Lt. Gen. Frederick B. Friestedt Bailli Gr. Cr., Grand Chancellor, Count Nicholas Bobrinskoy, Prior of N.Y. Grand Cross, King at Arms & Grand Herald Dr.Lee D. Van Antwerp Grand Cross. Those Priors and Bailli Gr. Cross Members who sent in material for the Agenda being: Baron Erich N. Lindenstjerne, Bailli Gr. Cr. E.G.P., Bailli Gr, Cr. Sub-Prior of the Grand Priory of Malta. The Grand Prior of Malta, The Roi D’Armes of the E.G.P. M. J.Bochstal, Sir Donald R. Weber Grand Secretarius, Bailli Gr. Cr., The Priors of England and Australia Sir Anthony Zammit, Gr. Cr., and Major Roland Podesta Grand Cross, and Sir J.W.G.Pinckett.

Count Bobrinskoy offered a prayer for our guidance and understanding of the problems that faced the members of the Grand Magestry.

The chairman then recognised the Grand Chancellor who stated that in order not to waste time in our discussions that we adopt the following AGENDA for discussion of the problems which we face today.

* The Agenda was adopted unanimously by those present, which did make up the necessary quorum for the meeting.

Reading and acceptance of previous meetings/ was not required as they had already been accepted and approved by a prior meeting.

As there was no other business to be taken up by the Grand Magestry the chairman directed the body to proceed with the items on the accepted Agenda, and they then proceeded as follows:

Item #1.  Request by the Grand Prior of Malta for a formal Apology for a statement the Prior of Great Britain had made about the Grand Priors use of a Constitution which was in error.

Solution: The Grand Magestry resolved that no apology was required as the Grand Prior did use a Constitution which had been amended by the Count DeCaboga, but such amendments were never accepted by the European Grand Priory, which therefore made it illegal. Also resolved that the Grand Prior of Malta start using the correct Constitution immediately.

The Grand Chancellor then made a motion that solution to problem (1.) be adopted. Motion was seconded and passed.

Item #1-b. The problem of illegal use of ambassadors outside of the geographical boundaries of the Grand Priory of Malta.

The Lt. Grand Master pointed out that the letter of authority which he sent to the Grand Prior of Malta in 1971 had a time limit of six months in it and that The Grand Prior has continued to disregard the same. It was also pointed out that the Rank of Ambassador was created by the Grand Prior and does not exist within the Order. The fact that the Grand Prior has never sent the applicant’s personal and genealogical data sheets on to the Roi D’Armes of the E.G.P. Has caused this body to notify all these people of which it is aware that their diplomas are not legal their membership in the Order suspect and under suspension until the Grand Prior of Malta complies with certain requirements, pending the results of this meeting.

Motion made by the Grand Chancellor Friestedt “that Grand Prior of Malta’s rank of Grand Prior be held in suspension until such time as he is able to satisfy the Grand Magestry that he has done the following things:

1. Send on to Roi D’Armes H.J. Bochstal all the application papers of every person knighted by him from the United States of America for his recording and approval as knights of the Order, including those inducted by is “Ambassadors.”

2. That he cancel and recall his so-called Ambassadors ranks, and issue instructions to them to cease and desist from soliciting and dubbing knights in the bounds of North and South Americas immediately.

3. That he furnish the Grand Magestry with a list of all persons so dubbed both here and on Malta.

4. That he refrain from exceeding the geographical lines that were given to him and established for many years.

5. That when all these have been complied with this Grand Magestry will arrive at a decision as to the disposition of these knights, and that until such requests are complied with his Rank of Grand Prior will be held in suspension by this Grand Magestry.

6. That since H.R.H. Juan Carlos of Spain will be given the Grand Collar of the Order of St. Lazarus he becomes unacceptable as a possible Protector, or Grand Master.

7. That then the ambassadorship to his Court also be cancelled and the holder of that illegal rank be notified of this.

8. That This Grand Prior was Notified to call off the ceremony in Mexico to have been conducted by his Ambassador Walter Kramer, who is suspect to this body as he has never presented himself or written to our Lt. Grand Master relative to his work in this continent.

9. That this Grand Prior make a formal apology to the Roi D’Armes H.J. Bochstal for having accused him of being a member of the Formhals Group as an excuse of the Grand Prior’s failure to send papers of a Nobiliary claim for approval for a brother Knight to the Roi D’Armes’ checking and approval, and since Brother Brochstal has asked for a court of Justice hearing on this matter, that the Grand Prior do this immediately in the form of a letter acceptable to brother Bochstal.

The above nine motions were seconded and approved by those present unanimously.

ITEM #10.
The requests by the Priors of Great Britain and Australia to achieve strict uniformity in Constitution, By-laws, protocol, decorations, administration and registration, were passed by the entire Board as a single motion made by Dr. Van Antwerp.

ITEM 11. A motion that no new members be accepted before they have been registered and their Genealogical Histories accepted by the Roi D’Armes. Also that all Diplomas by the Lt. Grand Master and countersigned by the Grand Chancellor, or if outside the U.S.A. by the prior responsible for said dubbing ceremony, and the Grand Chancellor, was passed by a unanimous vote.

ITEM 12. A motion made by the Count Bobrinskoy stating that the Lt. Grand Master be permitted to foreign Diplomas in Blanc, but that before so doing the registration papers plus applicants photo attached to his application be in possession of the Lt. Grand Master, before signing same or forwarding same to that European Prior, was passed unanimously.

ITEM 14. A motion made by the Lt. Grand Master that (a) all Priors become automatic members of the Grand Magestry as are all Grand Priors presently was approved by unanimous vote.

ITEM 15. A motion by the Lt. Grand Master stating that the Grand Magestry publish a quarterly Journal for the benefit of all Priories and their members; each Grand Priory being required to contribute submit articles and news for its’ publication was passed by an unanimous vote.

ITEM 16. A motion that NO Prior could appoint an Ambassador or person with the rank of Ambassador, and that all liason work between Priories, Grand Magestry and Grand Priories be accomplished thru Liason Officers to do only liason work, was also passed.

ITEM 17. The use of sponsorship forms for new applicants be adopted as a requirement of this Order was passed by voice vote unanimously.

ITEM 18. Sir Donald Weber’s request to have the Prior of New York straighten out the legal mess he chose in incorporating the Priory in New York State was put into discussion. It was agreed that the present Incorporation is unacceptable and when The good Prior has acquired several applicants and changed the legal title to read properly this Grand Magestry will reconsider his application into our Order. No action:

ITEM 19. Brother Weber’s request that no applicant be admitted to the Order with a rank of only a knights, be it of grace, justice or honor without having served the Order for at least one year, was passed by a unanimous voice vote.

ITEM  20. Put into motion form by Dr. Van Antwerp that both Europe and the United States publish lists of their entire memberships without addresses other than City and Country, the suggestion by the Baron Lindenstjerne was passed.

ITEM 21. Suggestion by Walter JPJ Pincket and the Prior of Australia Major Roland Podesta that we choose other dates than ST. JOHN’S DAY as meeting dates for the future, brought out the motion “that the Grand Magestry select other time for their Grand Convent and that al least three months prior notice be given all Grand Priors, Priors, and other members of the Board of Directors for their meeting was proposed by Count Bobrinskoy and passed by voice vote.

ITEM 22. Grand Chancellor Friestedt concluded the meeting by expressing his hopes that it will be possible to unify the entire Order of St John of Jerusalem, Hospitallers by the use of the same by-laws and statutes for each and every Priory and Grand Priory. That we all make a closer inspection of the Protocol and ideals of the ancient Order of Hospitallers so that in the future, and beginning now we get back to doing Charitable and Humanitarian deeds instead of trying to impress other pole of those things that we are not. This is too great an Order to be cut down by personal greed and desire; it deserves only the best of people not the most of money and rank. Lets then pull together to re-unite the Order of St John of Jerusalem to do its established function “Pro Utilitate, Pro Hominium”.

The Chairman Lt. Grand Master H.R.H. Prince Serge Troubetzkoy after asking of further business declared the meeting Closed.

Created 19th December 2004.

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