23rd November : Our Lady Of The Teutonic House

Our Lady Of The Teutonic House

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Devotion to Mary, pacifying the cities, inspiring knights with courage, was the mainspring of military orders, those ever triumphant orders of armies of the Middle Ages.

Here the devotion to woman was represented by a particular devotedness to the Blessed Virgin; thus the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem invoked Mary on receiving their swords, an invocation still made by the Knights of Malta, the last transformation of the celebrated order.

The Teutonic Knights were styled “Knights of the Blessed Virgin.”  The Pope approved them in the 12th century as “Hospitalers of the Blessed Virgin” and put them under the rule of St. Augustine.  The lands they wrested from the heathens were called “Mary Lands”.

The age of chivalry, nobler and better than ours, when religion was respected and its holy laws obeyed from the palace to the hovel, was the epoch when devotion to the Mother of God reached its zenith; all was then done for her and through her.  The Blessed Virgin, blending all conditions of beauty, gentleness, and angelic purity befitting the model lady, was the object of a devotion superior to that rendered to any saint.  Tourneys were proclaimed, feats of arms accomplished, in honor of Mary.  Kings and knights watched their arms on vigils in her chapels; her name was a war-cry in the various languages of Europe.