Papal Encyclicals
Papal Bulls



Paschal, bishop, and servant of such as are the servants of God, to his venerable son Gerard, founder and Master of the Hospital at Jerusalem, and to his lawful successors for evermore. The requests of a devout desire ought to meet with a corresponding fulfillment. Inasmuch, as of thy affection thou hast requested, with regard to the Hospital which thou hast founded in the city of Jerusalem, in proximity to the Church of the blessed John the Baptist, that it should be supported by the authority of the apostolic see, and fostered by the patronage of the blessed apostle Peter:

We, therefore, much pleased with the pious earnestness of thy hospitality, do receive the petition with our paternal favour, and do ordain and establish, by the authority of this our present decree, that that house of God, your Hospital, shall now be placed, and shall for ever remain, under the protection of the apostolic see, and under that of the blessed Peter. All things whatsoever, therefore, which by thy persevering care and solicitude have been collected for the benefit of the said Hospital, for the support and maintenance of pilgrims, or for relieving the necessities of the poor, whether in the churches of Jerusalem, or in those of parishes within the limits of other cities; and whatsoever things may have been offered already by the faithful, or for the future may through God's grace be so offered, or collected by other lawful means; and whatsoever things have been, or shall be granted to thee, or to thy successors, or to the brethren who are occupied in the care and support of pilgrims, by the venerable brethren the bishops of the diocese of Jerusalem; we hereby decree shall be retained by you in peace and undiminished.

Moreover, as to the tithes of your revenues, which ye collect everywhere at your own charge, and by your own toil, we do hereby fix and decree, that they shall be retained by your own Hospital, all opposition on the part of the bishops and their clergy notwithstanding. We also decree as valid all donations, which have been made to your Hospital by pious princes, either of their tribute moneys or other imposts.

We ordain furthermore, that at thy death no man shall be appointed in thy place, as chief and master, by any underhand subtlety, or by violence; but him only who shall, by the inspiration of God, have been duly elected by the professed brethren of the Institution. Furthermore, all dignities or possessions which your Hospital at present holds, either on this side of the water, to wit in Asia, or in Europe, as also those which hereafter by God's bounty it may obtain; we confirm them to thee and to thy successors, who shall be devoting themselves with a pious zeal to the cares of hospitality, and through you to the said Hospital in perpetuity. We further decree that it shall be unlawful for any man whatsoever rashly to disturb your Hospital, or to carry off any of its property, or if carried off to retain possession of it, or to diminish ought from its revenues, or to harass it with audacious annoyances. But let all its property remain intact, for the sole use and enjoyment of those for whose maintenance and support it has been granted. As to the Hospital or Poor Houses in the Western provinces, at Burgum of St. Aegidius, Lisan Barum, Hispalum, Tarentum, and Messana, which are distinguished by the title of Hospitals of Jerusalem, we decree that they shall for ever remain, as they are this day, under the subjection and disposal of thyself and thy successors.

If, therefore, at a future time, any person, whether ecclesiastical or secular, knowing this paragraph of our constitution, shall attempt to oppose its provisions, and if, after having received a second or third warning, he shall not make a suitable satisfaction and restitution, let him be deprived of all his dignities and honours, and let him know that he stands exposed to the judgment of God, for the iniquity he has perpetrated; and let him be deprived of the Sacraments of the Body and Blood of Christ, and of the benefits of the redemption of Our Lord, and at the last judgment let him meet with the severest vengeance. But to all who deal justly and rightly with the same, on them be the peace of our Lord Jesus Christ, so that not only here below they receive the rewards of a good action, but also before the Judge of all mankind, they may enjoy the blessing of peace eternal.

I PASCHAL, Bishop of the Catholic Church.
I RICHARD, Bishop of Alboe, have signed.
I CALIXTUS, Bishop of the Catholic Church.
I LANDULPHUS, Bishop of Beneventum, have read and signed.

Given at Beneventum, by the hand of John, Cardinal of the Roman Church, and Librarian, on the 15th day of the calends of March, in the 6th indiction of the incarnation of our Lord, in the year 1113, and in the 13th year of the Pontificate of our Lord Pope Paschal 11.


Note: This Papal Bull can be found as Appendix No. 6 of A History of the Knights of Malta or The Order of the Hospital of Saint John of Jerusalem by Major Whitworth Porter (London: Longman, Brown, Green, Longmans, & Roberts. 1858) Vol. 1. pp. 490-492; and in other historical sources. This and other Papal Bulls pertaining to the Sovereign Order of Saint John of Jerusalem may also be seen in the Order's archives in the Palace of the Grand Masters in Valletta, Malta.