H.E. The Chevalier Klaus-Peter Pokolm GCLJ, GCMLJ

It is with gratitude and deep sadness that we bade farewell to our beloved brother Klaus-Peter Pokolm, founder of the Humanitarian Grand Priory of Europe, whom our heavenly Father called home to his eternal kingdom on 22 April, 2024 after a long, patiently endured illness. The funeral took place on April 29, 2024 at St. Katharina's Church in Alt-Hürth.

Klaus-Peter was a true Christian gentleman, always seeking the good in others and their welfare. He dedicated all his energy, organisational skills and commitment to the Order of St. Lazarus throughout his life.

Klaus-Peter joined the Order of Saint Lazarus in 1971 with the mission of re-establishing a delegation of the Order in Germany. From 1995 to 2020 he headed the Humanitarian Grand Priory of Europe, an independent cross-national jurisdiction within the Order, enabling the integration of the Lazarus Relief Organisation (LHW) into the international structures of the Order. In special recognition of this work by the Grand Master, he was promoted to the rank of Knight Grand Cross (GCLJ).

He was Chairman of the International Press Commission from 2004 – 2014. and was appointed to the Board of Advisors of the late Grand Master, H.E. Don Carlos Gereda y de Borbon, in 2014. Latterly, Klaus-Peter was also the Grand Prior Emeritus of the Humanitarian Grand Priory of Europe.

His great achievement is the establishment of the Lazarus Hilfswerk in Deutschland e.V. (LHW). Under his determined leadership, it became a successful and highly recognized humanitarian institution in nursing, social and rescue services. He was the Managing Director of Lazarus Hilfswerk in Deutschland e.V. from 1973 to 2001.  After his retirement he remained an advisor to subsequent board members and managing directors, through his activities as Grand Prior of the GPEU.

By decree of the Grand Master, the GPEU, as a recognized European non-governmental organization (NGO) and volunteer organization, was established as an institutional liaison between the Lazarus Relief Agency (based in Germany) and the International Order of St. Lazarus.

With his contacts, his foresight and his enormous wealth of experience, Klaus-Peter was always a highly valued companion and advisor to the LHW. In his proactive, friendly and people-oriented manner, he succeeded in developing the Lazarus Hilfswerk (LHW) into an aid organisation which, starting with international aid transports, meal services, outpatient care services and transport services for the disabled, has since developed into a social enterprise with inpatient, day-care and outpatient care homes/services and kindergartens. By entering the field of inpatient care in 1997, he laid the foundation for the current focus of the LHW.

In the period from 1978 to 1999, he himself often travelled internationally as part of the coordination of aid deliveries to Friedland, Poland, Romania, Hungary, Kosovo and Russia. He also made a major contribution to the relief operation during the tsunami disaster in Thailand.

Klaus-Peter's tireless and courageous commitment to the friendship between Poland and Germany, which was also personally supported by His Holiness Pope John Paul II, remains exemplary. He met Christians from many European countries as well as brothers and sisters in our Order in a spirit of ecumenism. His work was international at the highest levels, and we will continue to work in his spirit.

He was a recipient of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany, recipient of the Pontifical Order Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice and other high awards.

In 1975 Klaus-Peter established and chaired the Public Relations Committee of the Order and set up the International Website.  This laid the foundation for its successor, the International Public Relations and Communications Committee.

Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife Pauline at this sad time.