The International Order

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OSMTH Introduction

The Autonomous Grand Priory of the United States of America, Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem is currently affiliated with the international Order known as Ordo Supremus Militaris Templi Hierosolymitani, which is Latin for “The Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem”, and is often shortened to the initials OSMTH or SMOTJ. OSMTH enjoys the distinction of being the only international Templar Order recognized as a United Nations Non-Governmental Organization with Special Consultative Status.


On behalf of our members in some 40 nations worldwide, we welcome you to the website of the best known international Templar Order in the world, and the only Templar Order recognized in Special Consultative Status by the United Nations Economic and Social Council.  

Our official name is Ordo Supremus Militaris Templi Hierosolymitani, Latin for “The Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem”, and often shortened to the initials OSMTH.

Our Order today is founded on the principles of chivalrous service and Christian charity, first adopted by the original Templar Knights in the Holy Land in the year 1118 and carried out in those early days from their headquarters on the Temple Mount in the Holy City of Jerusalem, which were provided for them by the then King of the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem, Baldwin the Second.

In these modern times, OSMTH is:

  • international in nature, with members in Grand Priories and Mentored Entities in some 40 nations;
  • ecumenical Christian in our religious outlook, welcoming members from all Christian denominations; and
  • focused, in our charitable activities and international advocacy, on matters of human rights, religious freedom, cultural conservation, sustainable development, and humanitarian aid to the world’s less fortunate citizens.

OSMTH is accredited by the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) as a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) in Special Consultative Status and maintains Delegations at the United Nations’ Offices in New York City, Geneva, and Vienna.

Like the Knights Templar of old, we operate as a modern-day worldwide network of men and women of faith and goodwill. OSMTH Member Grand Priories draw their individual members from a widely diverse spectrum of human society, including government officials, diplomats, clergy, military officers, physicians and surgeons, engineers, historians, academics, home-makers, artists, lawyers, and humanitarian aid caregivers. OSMTH represents a highly respected body of expertise, an influential voice to support commitment to the less fortunate of the world and to promote the time-tested chivalric ideals of honor, honesty, civility, tolerance, care for our fellow humans, and to uphold spirituality and religious faith throughout our individual nations and throughout the world community.

We often find ourselves working with, and through, the senior leadership of nations and churches, and with other non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in order to provide humanitarian aid and other support in the resolution of serious humanitarian needs or in peace-building efforts in ethnic and religious conflicts. By engaging the respect for, and credibility of, our worldwide membership in their home nations, we are able to bring resolution and assistance in matters that can otherwise quite often become bogged down in bureaucracy and complex regulations.

Our objectives include the international promotion of inter-cultural and inter-religious contacts and worldwide networks, in order to help build bridges of understanding between nations and cultures, as well as good works performed anonymously by individual members of our Order. As ecumenical Christians, we also seek to increase awareness of the causes of conflicts and, in so doing, work towards their future prevention and the ultimate peaceful coexistence of all nations. Because our forebear Order began its first work in the Holy City of Jerusalem in the 12th century, the Holy Land, and the wider Middle East, as the cradle of Christianity, are of the highest interest to us.

OSMTH aspires to foster a cosmopolitan society in which differences among peoples, cultures, and systems of government will be both respected and appreciated. We seek the betterment of humanity through education, worldwide fellowship, chivalric principles, Christian charity, and civil behavior one to another.

Our membership standards are purposely high, and OSMTH’s values and expectations are challenging for individual members to live up to, but high ideals can help people of goodwill to find meaning in their lives; and individual members can look to their sisters and brothers in the Order for fellowship and mutual support.

In practical terms, OSMTH expects individual members to demonstrate a substantive and sustained commitment to voluntary service; and to support the Order’s activities, according to their individual talents and financial means. What all members of the Order have in common is a dedication to serve their fellow men and women and a belief in the ideals and values of OSMTH, as set out in our Order’s motto:

“Not to us, O Lord, not to us; but to your name give the glory.”

Further information about OSMTH can be found on the internet at the website