Official statement of KMFAP - Knights of Malta


The Grand Magisterial See of the „Sovereign Order of Saint John of Jerusalem, Knights of Malta, Federation of the Autonomous Priories” (KMFAP) welcomes the commemoration in the Hungarian Parliament of the Military Order of the Knights' (SMOM) activities in Hungary, which order was founded and recognised by the Vatican. Our State respects this branch of the Knight Order – which is organised exclusively on Catholic religion (SMOM) – with the fact that essentially later, they arose seceded from us, and receive significant assistance from the Vatican. Besides according to the revelation of the 1953 papal bull they are subject to the Holy See, unlike us, who retained complete independence, and we never requested nor received financial support from any State.

In 1955 in Rome a court decision was taken about our historical legitimacy and sovereignty, which verdict made clear distinction between the “papal institution” supported by the Vatican, and the “ancient order” so the old order, that is us. This final and still be court judgement confirms our legitimacy and sovereignty. Our state is subject of international law, has legal capacity, and as such maintains diplomatic relations at ambassadorial level with a number of countries, contracted and still concludes international treaties.

We can say with conviction that neither His Holiness the Pope Francisco nor any other church leaders have no objection to the operation and humanitarian activities of our order.

We invest our Knights and Dames regardless of their religious affiliation or political beliefs. The main criterion for the selection and invitation of our order is the humanist values of a candidate. We are aware that in our state Catholics and other religious believers get on well with each other, as worldwide people in need are supported regardless of their party affiliation and ideology. Only in this way can a knight order meet the requirements of modern age, and respond to the challenges of our globalising world.

Despite the fact that we ourselves are facing and also see the operation of other “Maltese” knight orders, by no means urge the government to take action with them! In a world of so much trouble and people in need the voluntarily organised humanitarian work should be at least recognised, honoured and supported as far as possible. This is the basis of our ancient order's – the Sovereign Order of Saint John of Jerusalem, Knights of Malta, Federation of the Autonomous Priories (KMFAP) – federal policy and not the request of State aid or assistance for cracking down helping hands and souls working in other organisational forms.

16th October 2013