The Order of St. John is one of five national orders in the Canadian Honours System including The Order of Canada, Order of Military Merit, Order of Merit of the Police Forces and the Royal Victorian Order.
The Order of St. John – A Canadian Honour
The Order of St. John is a humanitarian order that was recognized as a national order in the Canadian Honours System in 1990. The Insignia of the Order is a white eight-pointed cross embellished in the four principal angles alternately with a lion and a unicorn. The four arms of the cross signify the virtues of prudence, temperance, justice and fortitude. The eight points signify humility, compassion, courtesy, devotion, mercy, purity, peace and endurance. The Insignia of the Order may be worn with other decorations, medals and badges that have also been granted or authorized by the Sovereign, the Queen of Canada. The Order of St. John is divided into the following Grades: Grade I: Bailiffs or Dames Grand Cross (GCStJ) Grade II: Knights or Dames of Justice or Grace (KStJ or DStJ); (NB only those persons entitled to bear Arms can be classified as “of Justice” within this Grade; the others are classified as “of Grace”) Grade III: Commanders (CStJ) Grade IV: Officers (OStJ) Grade V: Member (SBStJ or SSStJ The Nomination Process
Admission to the Order of St John is discretionary and results from the exercise of the Royal Prerogative. Recognition of humanitarian service, consistent with the aims and objectives of the Order may be extended beyond the membership of St. John, recognizing individuals of quality who have enhanced the Order.
Currently, there are approximately 5,500 active Canadian members in the Order.
Admission to the Order of St. John
Nomination for admission or promotion in the Order is based exclusively on merit, which means on the candidate’s past contribution to the aims and objectives of the Order, the quantity and quality of work, volunteer service, and contribution of time, skills and expertise, as well as a sustained involvement and commitment to the Order of St. John and/or to St. John Ambulance. Submissions should highlight the consequences of the work being recognized and demonstrate the impact the service being recognized has had since admission or the last promotion.
A call for nominations is made twice a year through the St. John Councils in Canada. Nominations must be completed on a nomination form provided by St. John Canada and submitted to the St. John Ambulance Branch office (if applicable) or the Council office in the province where the nominee resides. All nominations are reviewed by a Council honours and awards committee and forwarded to the National Honours and Awards Committee for consideration. All nominees recommended for admission or promotion are by the National Honours and Award Committee are forwarded to London for approval by the Grand Prior. Successful nominations are sanctioned by the Governor General of Canada in the name of Her Majesty the Queen of Canada. Names of those receiving the honour will appear in the Canada Gazette. Criteria All nominees must be either Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada to be considered for admission or promotion in the Order and must be over 18 years of age to be considered eligible. Member To be admitted as a Member, the nominee shall have performed good and devoted service to the Order, through sustained voluntary commitment of time, skills and/or resources to St. John Ambulance. Officer To be promoted to Officer, the nominee shall have demonstrated successfully, leadership at either a regional level in a position carrying substantial responsibility, or at a local level carrying major local responsibility. Commander To be promoted to Commander, the nominee shall have demonstrated successfully, leadership at a national or provincial / regional level, in a position carrying substantial responsibility. Knight or Dame To be promoted to Knight/Dame the nominee shall have demonstrated successfully, leadership at a national or provincial / regional level, in a position carrying major responsibility. Insignia of the Order The Insignia of the Order is a white eight-pointed cross embellished in the four principal angles alternately with a lion passant guardant and a unicorn passant. The four arms of the cross signify the cardinal virtues: prudence, temperance, justice and fortitude. The eight points signify the beatitudes: humility, compassion, courtesy, devotion, mercy, purity, peace and endurance. As one of the recognized Orders in the Canadian Honours System, the Insignia of the Order may be worn with other decorations, medals and badges that have also been granted or authorized by the Sovereign, The Queen of Canada.
Members of the Order are listed on the Roll of the Order, alphabetically by surname, followed by post nominal letters as recognized by the Government of Canada, followed by city and province of residence.
Grades are indicated in ascending order beginning with:
- Member M
- Officer O
- Commander C
- Knight/Dame of Grace K/D - G
- Knight/Dame of Justice K/D - J
- Bailiff or Dame Grand Cross GC
The year indicated reflects the date that the admission or promotion was sanctioned by the Governor General.
Download the Roll of the Order
The Roll of the Order is a list of all surviving members of the Order of St. John in Canada. The Roll of the Order is updated four times a year.
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