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Hello, maybe a numb question, but is theknightstemplar.org affiliated with
‘The Sovereign Military Order of the Temple ofJerusalem”?
Hello Rick and welcome to our Templar Forum. No we are not in anyway associated with the The Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem which is abbreviated as the SMOTJ (SMOTJ.org). We do however respect them as our Brothers and Sisters and seek to build a good relationship with them because today, they have good and well-meaning leaders who we respect. Today’s SMOTJ is a good organization that is raising funds to do charitable works and helping Christians in need.
We are called the “OSMTJ” = Ordre Souverain et Militaire du Temple de Jérusalem. Both groups were once under a terribly corrupt leader named Regent Fernando de Sousa Fontes.
In 1969, Regent de Sousa Fontes issued a Magistral Edict convoking a Convent General that would first meet in Paris in September, 1970, with the purpose of electing a new Grand Master. Many of the Priories were tired of de Sousa Fontes’s despotic and undemocratic leadership, his utter contempt for transparency, and blatant mismanagement. At that historic Convent General in Paris, participants democratically elected General Antoine Zdrojewski (the Grand Prior of Europe and of France) to be the next Grand Master. It’s important to remember that de Sousa Fontes authorized and attended this Paris Convent for the purpose of electing a new Grand Master as he believed he was going to win.
Regent de Sousa Fontes would have been finished after that as four of his most important nations left with Grand Master Zdrojewski. However, one powerful nation stayed with the defeated Regent to prop him up, the SMOTJ.org of the United States. In truth, if the United States had also left Regent de Sousa Fontes at that time, it would have been over for him.
However, by 1995, the SMOTJ.org in the United States realized their mistake in following this corrupt Regent de Sousa Fontes and they not only left him, they sued him in Federal Court: SMOTJ Inc. v. de Sousa Fontes, case No. U.S.D.C. Texas No. 3-995CV-0890G.
In the end, everyone realized the corruption of Regent de Sousa Fontes and left him. Our Order, the OSMTJ, just realized it 25 years earlier. To be fair, I would guess the SMOTJ.org would argue this: “We didn’t follow Grand Master Zdrojewski because of the scandals he was involved with.” General Zdrojewski was indeed involved with some scandals, most notably allowing so many members of the French Secret Service join his French Grand Priory and the repercussions that followed. To that point, I’d say that it was better to follow an honest man who accidentally gets caught up in scandal, than a dishonest man like Fernando de Sousa Fontes who was involved with just as many scandals, bribes, and selling titles.
Lest we forget, de Sousa Fontes tried to centralize all power into his hand to enrich himself while Grand Master Zdrojewski did the opposite in giving all the nations autonomy to make their own decisions. They were opposites and Grand Master Zdrojewski was the better man despite his mistakes of getting too involved with the deep politics in France at the time.
If you’d like to read about this history in greater detail, click this link: http://www.theknightstemplar.org/modern-order/
The SMOTJ.org is referred to at the end of that history as the “New OSMTH” as they are part of the larger “OSMTH” Order found at: http://www.OSMTH.org