The Commandery confers Orders, not Degrees. The orders
represent a new line of Masonic thought and experience, in
that they no longer refer to Ancient Craft Masonry, but to
ideals and practices of ancient chivalry and Christianity.
The first Commandery order, The Order of The Red
Cross, presents the story of the Jewish Prince, Zerubbabel,
and his efforts to secure permission of the Persian King
Darius to rebuild King Soloman’s Temple. The next
order, Knight of Malta, is a departure from Masonry
based on the Old Testament and is the first Christian
Order. Here, the candidate represents a knightly warrior of
the Crusades and is preparing for a trip to the Holy Land.
The last order is that of Order of The Temple or
Knight Templar, the crowning glory of York Rite Masonry.
Again, in this totally Christian Order, the candidate
represents a knightly warrior who desires to unite with a
Commandery of Knights Templar during the era of the
Crusades. After several trials to test his faith, courage,
and humility, he is rewarded by achieving his desire. Let
us look at these orders in more detail.