For the past 150 years the Patriarchs of the Melkite Catholic Church have served as the Spiritual Protectors of The Military and Hospitaller Order of Saint Lazarus of Jerusalem.

On May 6, 1973, Youssef Absi was ordained a priest and became Chaplain of the Missionary Society of Saint Paul. After the conclusion of philosophical and theological studies at the Major Seminary of St. Paul in Harissa (Lebanon), he obtained a licenciate in philosophy at the Lebanese University, licenciate in theology at the Institute of St Paul in Harissa, and a doctorate in musical science and hymnography at the Holy Spirit University of Kaslik.

On June 22, 2001, he was appointed Titular Archbishop of Tarsus of Greek Melkites and Curial Bishop and Auxiliary Bishop in the Melkite Patriarchate. Melkite Patriarchate of Antioch Gregory III Laham, BS, was his consecrator and the co-consecrators were Archbishop Jean Mansour, SMSP, titular archbishop of Apamea in Syria dei Greco-Melkiti and Archbishop Joseph Kallas, SMSP, Archeparch of Beirut and Jbeil, on September 2, 2001. From 2001 to 2006, he was Superior General of his religious community. Since 2007 he is Patriarchal Vicar in the Archdiocese of Damascus and triggered Archbishop Isidore Battikha from the office of Archbishop of Homs. He assisted as co-consecrator at the Episcopal Ordination of Yasser Ayyash, Archbishop of Petra and Philadelphia in Jordan.

Bishop Youssef Absi was elected on June 21, 2017, as the patriarch of the Melkite Greek Catholic Church. The election of Bishop Absi comes a month after Pope Francis accepted the resignation of Gregory III Laham.

H.E. Don Carlos Gereda y de Borbon, Marquis de Almazan

49th Grand Master

Elected as Grand Master at the Chapter General in Manchester in September 2008

The Grand Master is the supreme head of the Order and to him is delegated all power and authority of the Chapter General, unless otherwise provided in the Constitution.

The Coadjutor is the first dignity of the Order after the Grand Master and the Grand Master Emeritus, if any.

The Chapter General, is the supreme governing body and repository of all power in the Order, when convened. When the Chapter General ist not convened, this power is delegated to and vested in the Grand Master.

The Grand Magisterial Council is the principal policy making body of the Order, and it shall approve all candidates for the position of Grand Master and, or, Coadjutor. It is composed of all Grand Officers of the Order. It shall meet no less than once every two years.

The Grand Executive Committee is the principal governing body of the Order, with responsibility to oversee and co-ordinate the execution of the policies adopted by the Grand Magistral Council, as well as such other responsibilities as may be delegated or assigned to it by the Grand Master or the Grand Magistral Council.

The Grand Council is responsible for the scrutiny and arbitration of issues of policy differences or interpretation of provisions of the Constitution, by-laws, regulations of the Order, and Grand Magistral Decrees.

The Grand Master shall appoint the Principal Grand Officers of the Order and determine their functions, authority and responsibilities. The Principal Grand Officers are the Grand Commander of the Order, the Grand Prior of the Order, the Ecclesiastical Grand Prior of the Order, the Grand Chancellor, the Grand Referendary, the Grand Hospitaller, the Grand Justiciar, the Vice-Grand Chancellor (Administration) and the Vice-Grand Chancellor (Finance).

The Heads of National Jurisdictions are recommended by their jurisdictions to the Grand Master for his approval and appointment. They act as the direct representatives of the Order.s Government within their jurisdiction.

The Military and Hospitaller Order of Saint Lazarus of Jerusalem has 44 jurisdictions in 37 countries.


Grand Priory of America

of Belgium

Grand Bailiwick of the Czech Republic

Humanitarian Grand Priory Europe

Grand Bailiwick of Germany

Delegation of Singapore and Indonesia

Delegation of Japan

Priory of  North Macedonia

Grand Priory of New Zealand

Grand Priory of Portugal

Delegation of Siam (Thailand) and Indochina

Grand Priory of Slovakia

Grand Priory of Sweden

Grand Bailiwick of Switzerland 

Grand Priory of Australia

Grand Priory of Brazil

Delegation of Denmark (Sub jurisdiction of Grand Priory of Sweden)

Grand Priory of Finland

Grand Priory of Greece

Grand Priory of Ireland

Priory of Liechtenstein

Delegation of Mexico (Sub jurisdiction of Grand Priory of America)

Priory of Norway

Grand Priory of Romania

Grand Bailiwick of Sicily

Grand Bailiwick of South Africa

Priory of Zimbabwe






Hereditary Commandery of “El Acebuchar”

Hereditary Commandery of Sande

Hereditary Commandery of Fanad

Hereditary Commandery of Sighartstein

Hereditary Commandery of Rurich


International Grand Bailiwick



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