Thursday 21 January 2021

World Leprosy Day

Sunday 31st January is designated as World Leprosy Day (each year the last Sunday in January). At his installation our Grand Prior HE Anthony Dickinson requested chaplains to offer Mass on this day for the intentions of the Grand Master, HE Jan Count Dobrzenský z Dobrzenicz . Our Chaplain General in Great Britain, Fr Simon Henry will be do so at the 10am Mass that day in his parish of St Catherine Labouré.

Mass is also offered each year on the old Feast of the Precious Blood for all those suffering from leprosy and for all those whom our charitable activities are intended to help. Prompted by the thought of leprosy as a disease of the blood recalling that the Precious Blood of Our Lord shed for us is the healing salve to all our infirmities - spiritual and physical.

Monday 18 January 2021

The Order of Saint Lazarus of Jerusalem, by its history and its structure, has always been and remains, in reality, an equestrian order.

Because of it's checkered history, at times almost dying out, the Order of St Lazarus sometimes faces questions on the question of in what way is it recognized by the Catholic Church.

The historical and spiritual identity of the Order is obviously equestrian in nature and we are happy to report that in December 2020 Cardinal Farrell, Prefect of the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life, has  given us this confirmation by a letter sent to the Grand Master. 

The Cardinal specifies that he 

"considers that the Order of Saint Lazarus of Jerusalem, by its history and its structure, has always been and remains, in reality, an equestrian order" 


"wishes the Order of Saint Lazarus of Jerusalem to continue with great fruitfulness the work of sanctification of his members and of the noble service in favour of the poorest who characterise it in all the local Churches where it is present ”
The historical identity of the Order under our 50th Grand Master HE Jan Count Dobrzenský z Dobrzeniczand and it's vocation within local Churches are thus confirmed by the Holy See and this is a great joy for us.

In conclusion, we can henceforth affirm that the Holy See confirms our historical identity as an equestrian order and encourages us to continue our action within the Catholic Church through the recognition of the local Churches.

Because of the historical vagaries of the Order, we have not had direct governance under the Holy See like the better known Equestrian Orders. Since October 16, 2016, the Apostolic See decided not to expand the number of its own equestrian orders; so new recognition in that manner would not be possible for any group. 

Therefore, encouraged by the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life, we continue the work oft gaining recognition at diocesan and Conference of Bishops level, as has happened already in many places.

We look forward to renewing our efforts under this encouragement as, God willing, we are able to return to meeting together to push forward our efforts fundraising for those in need.