Is there a link between Mary Magdalene and the Knights Templar ?
The French knights Hugues de Payns, Godefroy de Saint-Omer and other knights founded the Order of the Temple in Palestine in 1118. Saint Bernard of Clairvaux establishes its laws and regulations.
The Knights Templar were warrior monks and, as many monks from this period of history, they were devotees of “Our Lady,” or “Lady Wisdom” (the feminine counterpart of Christ).
The only saints named in full in the rule are St. Peter, St. Paul, and St. Mary Magdalene. Mary Magdalene even has the epitaph of “glorious,” that suggests a certain emphasis upon her as a saint, compared to the other saints who do not receive such an epitaph.
That’s why it is important to consider the monastic side of the Templars. Indeed, one first needs to look at the Cistercian/Benedictine teachings of St. Bernard of Clairvaux, who was the Templar’s own patron and spiritual father. Monastic saint and reformer, he was responsible for giving the Templars their rule.
Bernard de Clairvaux and the Song of Songs
St. Bernard’s teachings were primarily based upon the spiritual love song in the Old Testament, the “Song of Songs,” by King Solomon. He composed a large number of lectures based upon this scriptural text in which he identified the black Shulamite, the sacred Bride of the Bridegroom. (The Song of Songs refers to Mary Magdalene, it is the first lecture I read on July 22, for Magdalene’s Festival at St Maximin, during the solemn mass.)
St. Bernard also had a special devotion to the Black Virgin, who was commonly known to represent not only Mary, but also this black Shulamite of the Song of Songs. This Mary was also associated with certain “Pagan” goddesses too. According to some researchers, we find many Black Virgin sites near Templar sites.
Here again, we find in reference the Song of Songs (1: 5): “Nigra sum, sed formosa”: “I am black but beautiful. “
Obviously, the Order of the Temple placed itself under the protection of Our Lady. A number of Gothic cathedrals have been dedicated to her. Among the famous buildings built by the Templar and remaining today is Chartres Cathedral, whose work began in 1145. It is a very significant example since we find there two Black Virgins (Notre Dame du Pilier and Notre Dame de Sous-terre) as well as a very famous stained glass window dedicated to Mary Magdalene.
In conclusion we can say that, on the monastic side of the Templar, we have evidence of devotion to the sacred Eros of the cult of the Virgin Mary, the Black Mary, and St. Mary Magdalene.
The Knights Templar and Mary Magdalene in Provence
For me, there is a certain link between the Knights Templar and Mary Magdalene, here, in Provence. As proof of this, these events which traditionally take place every summer, in Marseille, Saint Maximin and the cave of St Baume mountain where Mary Magdalene spent the last 30 years of her life.
On August 15, 2021, Catholic Templars of France participate in the traditional Holy Mass for the feast of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary and procession with the Statue of Our Lady of Confession, in the abbey of Saint Victor, in Marseille. It was in the crypt of St Victor that Mary Magdalene, Lazarus and the early Christians gathered to celebrate their worship.
Last July 18, they participate in the Holy Sunday Mass, concelebrated by the Minister Templi father Albert-Henri Kuhlem OP, in the basilica of Saint Maximin la sainte Baume, which houses in its crypt the relics of Mary Magdalene .
On 3 August 2019 at the Cave-sanctuary of Saint Mary Magdalene, La Sainte-Baume