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HUMANITARIAN ACTION

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About the humanitarian activities, the main actions are focused on specific actions in response to specific events, as far as the capacities of action of the Constantinian Order.

Without sufficient capacity to develop structures of action on those areas, our aim is the collection of funds and its donation to important global institutions, as the Red Cross, Caritas or the Pontifical Foundation of the Aid to the Church in Need.

Fundraising, beyond the personal donations of knights or delegations, has been based on the organization of charitable events such as concerts, exhibitions or conferences. In this last sort of events, special attention has been paid to offer the opinions of experts in such crises, in order to diffuse the problem and sensitize the audience.

In order to privilege the action of proximity, the Constantinian Order has channeled its efforts into crisis close to the geographical areas of its presence. The Order has mobilized on the occasion of the two largest refugee crises known in Europe since World War II: that derived from the Yugoslav wars (1992) and the current one in the Middle East (2011-present).

The devastating effects of earthquakes have been another area of humanitarian action. In this sense, the Constantinian Order was mobilized during the earthquakes of Assisi (1997), Aquila (2009) or Amatrice (2016), in Italy.

 

La Orden Constantiniana y las víctimas de la Guerra en el Mediterráneo

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The Constantinian Order, as a Christian organization, cannot be insensitive to the extraordinary human drama of the refugee crisis of the Middle East, arising from the wars of Iraq and Syria. Addressing the humanitarian consequences of the five-year war in Syria and its repercussions in Iraq is the largest humanitarian aid operation ever undertaken in Europe since World War II. This has been recalled by His Holiness Pope Francis, who is undoubtedly the world leader, who has most decidedly led the struggle to put an end to this human drama.

The Sacred Constantine Military Order of St. George, obliged to serve those persecuted by his own motto, and sensitively attentive to the words of the Holy Father, for his intimate vocation to guide his performance from loyalty to the Holy See; has taken on this challenge as a horizon.

The commitment to this cause, on the other hand, is inscribed in a genuine vocation of the Constantinian Order for historical reasons. The ancient connection of the Order with the East lands, where the Order was born and the Grand Magisterium was installed until the fall of Constantinople; as well as the genuinely Mediterranean legacy of the successive headquarters of the Grand Magisterium: Venice, Parma, the Two-Sicilies, and today of Spain; reinforce the interest of the Constantinian Order in that crisis.

In addition to this connection with the Mediterranean, Eastern and Western, there is yet another historical reason, that makes our sensibility about the people scourged by the ravages of war, as one of the vocational features of the Constantinian Order for a century. During World War I the Order was mobilized to mitigate the suffering of soldiers and civilians. On October 17, 1915, the Grand Prior of the Order obtained free access to the Military Hospital from the Superior Command of the X Corps of the Italian Army. The Order was distinguished by the uninterrupted care provided by its knights until the end of the war in the Military Hospital of Naples, Princess Yolanda, also installing 1000 beds on the hill of the Miracoli and financing the acquisition of ambulances. Through a committee presided over by the Grand Prior, the Order took care of the material and spiritual assistance of the soldiers.

In the course of World War II, the Order also provided assistance to the wounded and the prisoners in collaboration with the Red Cross, despite the difficulties imposed at that time by the Italian fascist government, contrary to the Constantinian Order. In addition to health care, special attention was paid to assist the needs of combatant’s families and the donation of books to inmates in prison camps.

This vocation reappeared on the occasion of the Yugoslav war, through the campaign of support for displaced persons in refugee camps in the early 1990s. The outbreak of the War in Syria and Iraq (2011), started a new mobilization campaign for refugees, with initiatives currently under way.