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|Mission||The Knights of St. John International continue to witness their faith in God, through Jesus Christ, in their daily works of charity in the Church, their community, and their commandery.|
During the late 1800’s European immigrants, who had left their homelands to find religious freedom in the United States, formed many benevolent societies within their parish churches often named after patron Saints and inspired by the zeal of the medieval knights of old.
Following the end of the Civil War, there existed a real need for physical and spiritual healing. In 1879, these many organizations, including the Knights of St. George, the Knights of St. Paul, the Knights of St. Louis, and the Knights of St. John met to form a greater society of Knights. They met in Baltimore, Maryland and formed themselves into the Roman Catholic Union of the Knights of St. John, later shortened to the Knights of St. John. The Order was officially incorporated in the State of New York on May 6, 1886. They sought to care for spiritual, social and physical needs of their members and neighbors. In the pattern of the Knights of the Crusade, they cared for the victims of the war by forming a Widows and Orphan Fund.
The Order continued to grow and expanded into Canada, Panama, Ghana, Nigeria, Togo, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Trinidad and Tobago and recently into England. In 1992, the name of the Order was officially changed to the Knights of St. John International to reflect the global structure of the Order.
The Order took for itself a model and patron, St. John the Baptist. The fact that St. John was a testament and open witness of faith in an unbelieving world is appropriate for Knights in today’s selfish times.