Ancient initiation rite


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An ancient order reborn

The Fraternal Order of the Knights of the Maccabees rises again, one eye to our storied history and one eye toward our glorious future.

These pages represent a glimpse into the formal business and rites of the Order.

They should be seen as ceremonies that connect the Order to the past, yet rites that do not bind the Order to the past.

We are a modern Order unashamed and unchained by our long and glorious history. Our history is ever before us as example and beacon, yet our future like our present is that of contemporary service and reflection.


The venerable Mattathias, the father of the Maccabees, was the first man to activity oppose the mandates of the pagan king. He not only scorned the bribes and flatteries of the king's officer but in a moment of uncontrollable indignation he slew the Apostate Jew in the act of sacrificing to strange Gods, and likewise the king's officer when he attempted to protect the miserable traitor.

Do not mistake the significance of this scene. From the heights of Sinai the thunderous command of Jehovah still echoes through the known world. Yes, "Thou shalt not kill," but the staff of Mattathias was not the weapon of a murderer. Its deadly blow was not struck with the fell purpose of the assassin. Rather did it speak the sudden impulse of the patriot, driven to desperation by the wrongs inflicted upon his country and his people.

Maddened by the craven hypocrisy of an erstwhile friend and follower, and fired with an unselfish zeal to strike for the liberty of his countrymen, avenge their wrecked hopes and ruined homes, and hold aloft the sacred traditions of his fathers.