Let me remind you, who are about to come member of the Sovereign Order of Saint John of Jerusalem, knights of Malta, Federation of the Autonomous Priories (KMFAP) that
The cross – with you will adorned-is the ultimate symbol of the order.
The eight points of the four arms of the withe Cross (later called Malteser cross) represent the eight lands of origin or langues of the knights: Auvergne, Provence, France, Aragon, Castille, and Portugal, Italy, Germany, and England (with Scotland and Ireland)
The withe color is the symbol van purity.According to the medieval vestimentary tradition of the knights.
The red is the symbol of nobility and readiness for fighting for justice and peace.
The four arms symbolize the cardinal virtues: Prudence, Temperance, Justice and Fortitude.
Furthermore its 8 points represent the eight beatitudes, witch originate from the practice of those virtues, namely:
- to live in truth
- to have faith
- to repent one’s sins
- to give proof of humility
- to love justice
- to be merciful
- to be sincere and wholehearted
- to endure persecution
Additionally, the 8 points have special meanings with respect to the knights: loyalty, fidelity, courage, helpfulness to the sick and poor. Contempt for death, honor, generosity, and piety.
The also represent the virtues, obligations and aspirations of the knights:
- You shall accept your order governance and its worthy commandments.
- You shall always defend the humanist values of your order.
- You shall respect human weakness and constitute yourself its defender.
- You shall love your country.
- you shall stand steadfast before your enemy.
- You shall fight base instincts and strive for the establishment of love in all things.
- You shall perform your duties faithfully, not contrary to the law of god.
- You shall bear witness to truth, and shall remain steadfast to your pledged word.
- You shall be generous, and give with largess to all in need.
- You shall be always the champion of right and good against injustice and evil.