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The Imperial Roman Church, Gallo-Russo-Byzantine Catholicate, through its foundation the Anglican Rite Roman Catholic Church, is an organisation in
special consultative status with the United National Economic and Social Council since 2019.

Guardsmen and women were among the first to help their communities during the COVID-19 Global Pendemic of 2020. Some are donating supplies, some deliver food. Others devote their professional expertise to hospitals, crisis centers, and local and national governments, as well as high-level international policy work. Some work to help the poor and marginalised people around the world who have been affected by the pandemic. We encourage others to do their part to help communities in need.

-- An Affinity Organisation for Those Dedicated to Serving Others --

Members of the Pontifical Walsingham Guard (Pontificia Guardia Walsinghamese) are men and women from all walks of life who are concerned about the welfare of our world. Guards participate according to their interests and qualifications. For example, Mariners maintain their nautical traditions working together with Cavalrymen, Pilots, Historians, and others who use their skills to make a positive difference.

The Pontifical Walsingham Guard (Pontificia Guardia Walsinghamese) is an international charitable humanitarian organisation that commemorates a distinctive military heritage. Unification of three divisions of the Imperial Teutonic Order with other ancient and modern military customs and traditions, such as those observed by the Vatican Swiss Guard, gave impetus to a formation of the current Pontifical Walsingham Guard by the Imperial Roman Church (Gallo-Russo-Byzantine Catholicate and Anglican Patriarchate of Rome). While unit designations are maintained to preserve historical lineages, individual Guardsmen and women are appointed in an "At Large" status. They may participate in uniformed service in humanitarian roles or in ceremonial duties in the Pontifical Court. While the Guard itself no longer serves in an active military role, a majority of Guardsmen and women are active or retired military veterans. Due to its heritage from the Imperial Teutonic Order, the Guard constitutes a unique religious society and apostolate for both clergy and laity.

As an international organisation, the language most used in the modern Pontifical Walsingham Guard is international English in order to facilitate effective communications, though its historic languages are German, English, Italian, and French. As an official part of the Gallo-Russo-Byzantine Catholicate (Stato Pontificio Romano), the principle official languages are Italian and English, as well as an official dialect, Anglo-Romanesco, a bilingual mixture of Italian and Oxford English. Today the Pontifical States (Stato Pontificio) has eight 8 official languages due to its cultural heritage, Latin, English, Italian, French, German, Greek, Spanish, and Russian.

The military heritage of the Walsingham Guard extends back to 1190 in the time of the Crusades in Acre in the Holy Land. The modern Guard is the serving and ceremonial successor of the Grand Bailiwick of Estonia, the Grand Priory of Etruria, and the Grand Priory of Canada, divisions of the Imperial Teutonic Order of the Hospital of St. Mary vested in the Gallo-Russo-Byzantine Catholicate. Despite maintaining a long and distinguished heritage, membership in the units is, again, considered "at large" today is based on faith and service rather than individual cultural background.

Above: The military flag of the Patriarchate as used by
the Walsingham Corps of the Guard is known as the Florentine Triple Cross.

Due to its joining requirements, the combined military, law enforcement, intelligence, and maritime experience of the members is such that, despite primarily serving an humanitarian purpose today, the crowned halberds and the Florentine Triple Cross represent one of the most highly trained and skilled organisations in the world.

Today's active members of the Guard have served in Iraq, Afghanistan, Bosnia, Croatia, Korea, Kuwait, Hungary, Vietnam, the Cold War, the Global War on Terrorism, NATO operations in Europe, and other campaigns. Guardsmen are mainly military veterans and interested civilians, rather than active-service personnel. Both clergy and laity are members. Clerics may serve in any unit of the Guard and continue the ancient custom of uniformed clerics extending back to the Crusades. It is typical for seminarians of the Patriarchate to serve in the Guard during their formation, and many continue after being ordained as priests. Usually Guardsmen are invited based on merit from among the membership of the Patriarchate or one ot its affiliated organizations. Additionally, membership in the Guard, as well as certain units thereof may be by hereditary right of descent from a member of the Guard, from a Crusader knight, or from a Teutonic knight during the period it was a functioning military order.

Certain units are designated as part of the Pontifical Security Corps, which is responsible for security of the Archfather. Due to their special role, before admission to that particular unit, applicants must show evidence of sufficient military, law enforcement, or security experience.

Guardsmen give all due support and cooperation to local law enforcement and government wherever they go. Above all, Guardsmen serve Our Lord Jesus Christ through prayer, devotion, and service to others.

Read more about the history of Germanic guard units.

Read about the Core Values of the Pontifical Walsingham Guard.


Modern Nations with Heritage and History
Perpetuated by the Pontifical Walsingham Guard

(Listed in alphabetical order.)

L-R: Canada, Estonia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the former Spanish territories,
the United Kingdom of Great Britain, the United States of America

National Anthem


Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is the purpose of the Walsingham Guard?
A: The Guard is a manifestation of the diverse military-chivalric heritage in which the modern Gallo-Russo-Byzantine Catholicate was born through the unification of its ancient and modern constituents. Its primary purpose is humanitarian service. Some members of the Guard also fulfill emergency response, and personal, physical, and cyber security roles.

Q: Is this a "militia group?"
A: Absolutely not. The Pontifical Walsingham Guard is an international humanitarian organisation with a long military heritage. Its purpose is ceremonial and to serve others. The Guard performs emergency response, humanitarian, and security roles as needed. The Guard is comprised mainly of military veterans and interested civilians rather than active-service personnel.

Q: Why are crowns used in the insignia?
A: In ancient Rome, various forms of crowns were used to reward courage, excellence, and success. Thus a crown is used on brevet insignia. It is in the same sense of excellence that the halberds of the general insignia of the Guard, as well as the insignia of the Naval Guard is used. Also in ancient Rome, various crowns were used to reward commanders. It is in this historical context that the crown is used in the insignia of rank of Field Marshals, Grand Admirals, Air Marshals, and above. Additionally, crowns in Christian symbolism are regularly used in reference to Christ the King, and this symbolism is maintained within the Guard. The form of the crown is that of a royal crown within the Holy Roman Empire, in reference to the origins of the Guard within the Holy Roman Empire. The Florentine-Roman pontifical insignia is used to surmount the combined emblem of the unified Pontifical Walsingham Guard.

Q: Why become a Guardsman?
A: To grow in one's own faith while serving the good of others.

Q: Is Germanic, English, French, Spanish, or Italian ancestry required to be a Guardsman?
A: Though the regiments have histories and traditions originating in certain cultures, specific ethnic heritage is not required. All that is required it to be a man or woman of good character and meet the other service requirements.

Q: What is the age range to join?
A: Applicants must be a minimum of 18 years of age. There is currently no upper age, provided the applicant meets the physical requirements.

Q: What are the physical requirements?
A: Applicants must be in generally good health and physical condition to adequately perform their support roles within the Guard; for admission to the Pontifical Security Corps, a recent report of physical examination signed by a physician of recognized standing may be required, as well as evidence of physical fitness and qualifications from recent military, law enforcement, or security service is required.

Q: What is the pay?
A: Some Guardsmen receive pay, while some serve as volunteers. Service in the Guard is a matter of faith and devotion.

Q: Where are Guards stationed?
A: Guards do not generally relocate for service, but may be required to travel.

Q: What are the Guards' colours?
A: The colours (flag) consist of two quarters with the arms of the Apostolic See of the Gallo-Russo-Byzantine Catholicate and the founding Archfather. In the other two quarters are the traditional colors of the Patriarchal Court, white and blue. In the center is a yellow cross with a red St. Stephen's cross within that for the Patron of the Apostolic See. The complete set of flags includes the state flag of the Stato Pontificio (left half red with the Florentine-Roman pontifical insignia, right half yellow), the military flag, and a unit flag. Derived from the flag, the colours used to represent the Guard in general are red and blue; red representing St. Stephen and Rome, and blue representing Our Lady of Walsingham and the Patriarchal Court. The colours are seen in the belt worn with various uniforms and in certain non-uniform items, such as the Guard tie.

Q: Is there any symbolism in the halberds used in the insignia and coat of arms of the Walsingham Guard?
A: The halberds come from the Landsknechts, Germanic soldiers that served the Holy Roman Empire. A traditional weapon of guards, they eventually became symbolic. In the Walsingham Guard, they symbolize service as guardians of the faith.

Q: What are the ranks in the Walsingham Guards?
A: See this link. By ancient custom, some officers hold certain traditional ranks as a result of their specific office. Otherwise, Major is typically the highest rank that officers can earn.






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