September 11, 2009
Greetings Centurions, Primus Pilus, I pray you are in good spirit and health this day.
I recently received a letter of inquiry concerning the mission and objectives of the Order and what it would support. I wish to take this opportunity to address this subject with all Centurions.
Know this: The Order of Centurions is a Religious Organization. You may find the guidelines for what that means in IRS Publication 557 (Rev June 2008) page 26.
The Order’s objectives have been clearly stated on the Objects page of the Order's website since 2003.
• Encourage regular reading of and meditation on Holy Scripture
• Promote a fear of God and right and just acts
• Witness the faith in words and deeds
The Order has a service branch, the Labarum Guard, that is dedicated to several other missions. One of which is to “protect and defend the Church Militant against every assault of the enemy” Paul’s letter to the Ephesians defines the nature of the enemy and the means of fighting the battle.
Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;
The only religious “warriors” this Order endorsees are her “Prayer Warriors” They are to execute the mission given by Paul in the last verse above. In addition, we have in our membership a Black Regiment of servants of Christ who we salute. They fight against the evil of our times, wielding the Sword of the Spirit which is the Word of God.
Some members of this Order are true warriors under arms. In the armed services, from Private to Major General, our centurions are sworn to defend and protect the sovereignty of their nation. Likewise, our member who serve in police forces are sworn to uphold just laws of their community, protect the innocent, and bring justice to the criminal. We support these warriors with our prayers in the execution of their lawful missions, under legitimate authority, according to the ancient traditions of the Church [Just War].
The good news is that we as Christians are to obey our Lord first and foremost, and in doing so we will find his peace. Be of good cheer Centurions, for Jesus has overcome the world. He said that we were to be in the world but not of the world. The world may go in any direction it please, but those who are his own bear their cross and follow him in the way.
We learn of the political and social climate that the first Christians endured, and how the society of the Roman Empire took great joy in evils such as the gladiatorial battles in the arena, perversions, murders, intemperance, lasciviousness, abortions and infanticide, infidelity, persecution of the elect in the arena, etc. We remember also how those early Christians overcame evil with good. They led the world to acknowledge our Lord and his Church as legitimate, and the early Church led the faithful to a life with Christ, not with the sword, but with their courage, hope, faith, love, and general virtuous lives.
Some regard the world today to be headed toward the same state of debauchery as Rome. What shall our response be? To all Centurions, I repeat what Jesus said in Sunday’s Gospel, “Go and do likewise” That is, love your neighbor, fear and love God and do what is Right, persevere in the faith of the fathers, and wait upon the Lord --for Vengeance is his [Romans 12:19].
You may best accomplish this mission through Christian service to your church and community, by practicing the virtues embraced by Christian knights through the ages, by prayer, by resisting evil passively, by spreading the Good News, by praying for those who persecute you in accordance with our Lord's specific command, and by working for the Kingdom of God in our time through charity, brotherhood, peace, and truth.
We have so many Centurions who do those things each day. I hesitate to mention any names, because I would surely not wish to slight any; but I will give example of some of the activities. Many of us know of centurions who fill these roles:
We have several professors who teach their students truth, honor and respect as they go about to teach their particular discipline.
We have many pastors who week by week stand before their flock to preach the Gospel, and encourage their assemblies to practice it day by day in their communities.
We have many parents who set the example for their children to follow of good citizenship, both in their community and as citizens of God’s Kingdom on earth.
We have many who have volunteered their time and leadership skills to their community: they are medical and emergency volunteers, organizers of orphanages, leaders of chivalric orders, visitors of the infirm, and civic volunteers.
We have several who work earnestly for peace through organizing societies, speaking before groups, and taking other actions to encourage the world to live in peace. They are missionaries of the Gospel and children of God. [Matthew 5:9]
We have many professionals: lawyers, doctors, administrators, soldiers, sailors, marines, airmen, firemen, security officers, and policemen who in their day-to-day actions live out the will of our Lord by exercising their skills in support of good and for the welfare of the communities they serve.
To all I say, Praise God, and to all I challenge: Go and do likewise.
editorial correction 9:58 AM 4/22/2017