Brotherhood of St. Paul
Ritual of the Third Degree or Order of Rome
Members of the Order of Damascus are entitled to this Degree, after they have been two years in that order, upon constitutional terms and without election.
If the President is not a member of this order the initiation shall be in the hands of the pastor, or a member of the order appointed by him.
Piano or organ prelude if desired.
PRES., *: We are now to initiate members into the Order of Rome.
The presiding officer shall designate members of the second degree to present the candidates and to command them briefly as qualified for the degree by fidelity in previous orders, saying in effect, and in their own words: Mr. President and Brothers, the brothers who stand before you have been members of the Methodist Episcopal church and of our order of the Brotherhood of St. Paul for the past two years. They have been satisfactory members of the church and of the Brotherhood, and we commend them as worthy to receive higher honor. Therefore we present them for initiation into the order of Rome feeling assured that they will prove valuable members and keep their vows.
PRES.: Brothers, It is well that you understand the nature of the order which you are to join. Hear what the Constitution says concerning it.
Members of the order of Rome—if there be any, or if not, the Order of Damascus—shall rise and read: The membership of the Brotherhood of St. Paul is divided into the following divisions:
1st—An Order of Jerusalem.
2nd—An Order of Damascus.
3d—An Order of Rome, comprising those who have been members of the church and of the previous order at least two years, and who conscientiously affirm that they have faithfully striven to live the life and fulfil the duties of the previous order and who in addition will promise to make a special study, with spiritual minds and with prayer, of the lives of Jesus and of Paul, to seek by prayer and discipline to lead lives of holiness, to be ready and willing to perform any reasonable service desired by the church, to give even if necessary at personal sacrifice to benevolent causes and especially to missions, and with divine help to strive to continue faithful to the end of life, that when they may truthfully say: "I have fought a good fight; I have finished my course; I have kept the faith; henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness which the Lord, the righteous Judge shall give me at that day, and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing."
Brief address upon the Order of Rome by pastor, president or some member, emphasizing the added requirements of this order.
Singing, Hymnal, 485.
The candidates kneeling, the brothers rising. * * *.
King of kings and wilt thou deign
o'er this wayward heart to reign?
Henceforth take it for thy throne.
Rule here, Lord, and rule alone.
Then like heaven's angelic bands,
Waiting for thine high commands
All my powers shall wait on thee,
Captive, yet divinely free.
At thy word, my will shall bow,
Judgment, reason, bending low;
Hope, desire, and every thought
Into glad obedience brought.
Zeal shall hasle on eager wing,
Hourly some new gift to bring,
Wisdom, humbly casting down
At thy feet her golden crown.
PRES.: Arise, brothers, and hear the words of St. Paul, in which he describes the knightly Christian.
Epistle to the Ephesians, 6th chapter, 10-18, read by the officers. * *. 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 wites 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 may 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."— Eph. 6: 10-18
PRES.: Let us unite in prayer for these brethren, that they may be warriors approved and mighty. * * *. * * * *.
All brothers will kneel.
PRES.: Almighty God, our Father, we humbly bow before thee.
Response by all members: Accept the praise we offer, and grant in mercy our petitions.
PRES.: We are frail creatures of thine, O God, but "in the Lord Jehovah is everlasting strength."
Response: Amen. Lord grant strength to thy servants "to overcome the world, the flesh and the devil,"
PRES.: O Merciful Father, in the name of thy Son Jesus Christ we beseech thee, grant to these our brothers a special spiritual blessing at this hour.
Response: Amen, and let all thy family receive thy gifts.
PRES.: We pray especially for "the power of thy might"—that we may live manly Christian lives, and for our brothers before thee now that they may "be strong in the Lord."
Response: And give them to put on "the whole armor of God."
PRES.: May they have their "loins girt about with truth."
Response: And may they have on "the breastplate of righteousness."
PRES.: And their "feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace."
Response: And with "the shield of faith," enable them "to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked."
PRES.: And grant them ever "the helmet of salvation."
Response: And "the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God."
PRES.: And prayer constant with watchfulness. Accept thou their sacrifice, and make them a blessing to their brethren, and they to them, and may the Church of Jesus be strengthened by our fidelity to duty. Deign to bless the brotherly work of our society and command thy Spirit to give us wisdom, zeal, and humility, and let all the brethren say.
Response: Amen! Amen! Amen! Glory, dominion, "power be to God most High!
Still kneeling—sing Hymnal 762.
My faith looks up to thee,
Thou Lamb of Calvary,
My zeal inspire;
Now hear me while I pray,
Take all my guilt away,
Oh, let me from this day,
Be ever thine!
* * *. *.
PRES.: Brothers, before you are admitted to the Order of Rome we desire to question you concerning your fidelity.
1. Have you a deep interest in the Methodist Episcopal Church, and in the Brotherhood of St. Paul?
ANS.: I have.
2. Since you were initiated into the Order of Jerusalem have you endeavored to "Keep under your body and bring it into subjection"?
ANS.: I have tried.
3. Since you were initiated into the Order of Damascus have you striven faithfully to live a regenerate life, looking unto Jesus for example and aid?
ANS.: I have faithfully endeavored so to do.
4. Have you performed your duties in the Orders of Jerusalem and of Damascus with your best ability?
ANS.: With such knowledge and strength as I possess, I have labored.
5. Do you earnestly desire to take higher vows, with the intention of keeping them for life?
ANS.: I do so desire with a free heart and ready hands.
PRES., *: You may resume your seats.
Very brief address by a brother designated on "Fidelity to Vows".
Solo or general song.
PRES.: Brothers—You are now to take the solemn obligations of the Order of Rome. If you can do so conscientiously, heartily, and with determination, you will answer ‘I will’ to the following questions.
PRES.: Will you henceforth for life hold sacred the obligations of all the Orders of the Brotherhood of St. Paul, and endeavor to keep them?
1. Will you make a special study of the lives of Jesus and Paul, with a spiritual mind and with prayer?
2. Will you seek by prayer and discipline to lead a life of holiness unto God?
3. Will you be ready and willing to perform any reasonable service desired by the church?
4. Will you give even at personal sacrifice if necessary, to Christian benevolences, and especially to missions?
5. Will you seek and accept opportunities to lead men to Christ, as never before, and will yon try to spread abroad and especially throughout the church the principles of this order?
6. Will you be humble and charitable, and forgiving, and strengthen your brethren?
7. Will you consider yourself bound for life by these vows, never seeking release from the same, and never to be released save for failure to hold sacred your word and obligation?
No. 460 Hymnal.
Do thou assist a feeble worm
The great engagement to perform;
Thy grace can full assistance lend.
And on that grace I dare depend.
PRES.: Brothers of the Chapter, you have heard these pledges. Have any of you reason to allege why the Symbol of this order should not be granted to these brothers?
No objection having been offered:
PRES.: The Christian warrior is to possess truth, righteousness, the preparation of the gospel of peace, faith and salvation, for all of which you must look to God and our Savior.
There is one part of your armor however which we can place in your hands, and which by divine help and only so, you will find mighty for defense and attack. As kneeling heroes of old were made knights by the touch of the sword, so you will kneel to receive the "sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God."
Candidates kneeling, chapter rising, * * *.
A member of the Order of Rome, or the chairman of the Christian Work Committee, shall approach each candidate with the Bible and place it in his hands saying: Take thou the sword of the Spirit to complete your armor. Use it valiantly for Christ and the kingdom.
Candidate: This sword will I strive to keep bright and to use manfully in the name and power of Christ.
Response of chapter: The Sword of the Lord,
Mighty may it be forever.
At the end all rise, * * *, and sing Hymnal 587.
Soldiers of Christ, arise.
And put your armor on,
Strong in the strength which God supplies
Through his eternal Son.
Strong in the Lord of Hosts
And in his mighty power,
Who in the strength of Jesus trusts
Is more than conqueror,
Stand then in his great might
With all his strength endued;
But take to arm you for the fight
The panoply of God;
That having all things done,
And all your conflicts pissed,
Ye may o'ercome through Christ alone
And stand entire at last.
Brief address may be given on "Swords and The Sword."
Brief prayer, * * *.
President or first ranking officer: "I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service." Rom. 12: 1.
Second ranking officer: "Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life." I Tim. 6:12.
Third ranking officer: "Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual restore such an one in the spirit of meekness, considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted." Gal. 6: 1.
Fourth ranking officer: Let us seek to be able to say at the end, "I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge shall give me at that day, and not unto me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing." II. Tim, 4:7, 8.
ALL: "Let brotherly love continue." Heb. 13: 1.
PRES.: Let each initiate record his name before leaving.
PASTOR: "Peace be to the brethren and love with faith from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ." Eph. 6: 23.