While Australia has been relatively fortunate in dealing with the global pandemic of 2020, one of the less desirable outcomes was the need to postpone the 2020 National Chapter owing to the COVID-19 virus travel restrictions. Almost exactly 12 months later, this meeting was again organised by the Victorian Commandery amid continuing significant constraints relating to the number of members who may attend a particular event. This had ramifications for the choice of a central venue hotel and transport arrangements. No social events, other than two dinners were able to be organised, nor any local sightseeing trips. Only the meetings necessary for the ongoing function of the jurisdiction, the Vigil Service and the Investiture were possible on this occasion.

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After a gap of 16 months and despite the country still being under Level One lockdown conditions, the Grand Bailiwick of South Africa recently held an extremely well-attended Friday evening Vigil and Saturday Investiture Service and Formal Dinner.

At the Investiture Service, National Certificates of Merit were awarded to two final year medical student members who continue to work beyond the call of duty during the pandemic; two Bronze Medals of Merit (South Africa) were awarded for outstanding service to the Order and a Bronze Cross of Merit was awarded to a member by order of the Grand Master. A Knight was made an Officer of the Companionate of Merit.

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On August 1st and 2nd, the first Italian Swiss Spluga gathering with historic military vehicles was held in Madesimo (very close to Sondrio, Lombardia Region).

This event, held for the first time, was organized by the Grand Priory of Italy of the Military and Hospitaller Order of St Lazarus of Jerusalem together with the cooperation of other Associations and Groups including: Interarma Protezione Civile (Interarms Civil Protection), Crestawald Museum Fortress.

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The civil and religious authorities, especially H.E. The Most Reverend Cardinal of the Holy See Cocco Palmeri, were deeply grateful for the security work carried out on behalf of tyeh Grand Priory of Italy during the long city journey of one of the most important religious processions organized in Lombardy Region:  the arrival of the “Three Kings” with their gifts (gold, frankincense and myrrh) at the Nativity cave on January 6th, the Feaast of the Epiphany.

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