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The Most Venerable Order of St John of the hospital of Jerusalem is a royal order of chivalry established in 1831 and found today throughout the Commonwealth Nations (Hong Kong, Ireland and the United States of America). Its worldwide mission is to prevent and relieve sickness and injury, and to act and to enhance health and wellbeing of people throughout the world. It is often called The Order of St. John.
The order is supported by some 4,000 employees and 250,000 volunteers mainly Anglican but those of other Christian dominations or religions are accepted into the order and honorary membership is presented to distinguished adherents of other religions. Membership into the Order is by invitation only, except via appointment to certain government or ecclesiastical offices in some realms. People may not petition for admission. It is perhaps best known through its service organizations. St John’s ambulance and St John’s Eye Hospital group, the memberships and work of which are not limited to any denomination or religion.
The original order was divided into languages (tongues). These were groups based on the tongue, or language, that the group spoke.
The Order of St. John’s biggest leap forward came in 1888, when Queen Victoria granted the society a royal charter. yet again renaming the order, this time as the Grand Priory of the Order of the Hospital of Saint John of Jerusalem in England. This was altered in 1926 to the Grand Priory in the British Realm of the Venerable Order of the Hospital of Saint John of Jerusalem, and then in 1936 as the Grand Priory in the British Realm of the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of Saint John of Jerusalem. In 1961 it played a role in the establishment the alliance of the Orders of St. John of Jerusalem and thereafter finally received through a concordat in 1963 collateral recognition by the Order of Malta. The most recent royal charter was issued in 1955, with a supplemental charter released in 1974, recognizing the world-wide scope of the organization by setting its present name. In 1999, the order was granted special consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council.
Item No: 60-041
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