Legionnaires of St. MichaelRanks of Chivalry
We are Apostles of the Latter Times, waging a spiritual war against the Enemy of our Lord and of mankind. As an army in God’s Kingdom we borrow from the medieval ranks of heraldry as well as modern military conventions to organize our forces.
God has his Navy, the Church, which is the Ship of Salvation, His Air Force who are his Angels, His Army who are his Saints and his Faithful, and then he has His Marine Corp, the specialists in Spiritual Warfare.
Our ranks for Legionnaires are derived from a combination of the medieval traditions and terminology of the Heraldry and Chivalry and the ranks of Knighthood, monastic ranks, and modern military ranks.
To help understand the levels of these ranks in modern terms we display the symbols of rank from the United States Marine Corp. We use the U.S. Marine Corp as inspiration for our ranks because the Marines are the first line of defense, the first line of offense, and the first line of protection. In addition, the Marines are a component of the Navy and cooperate closely with the Navy as an amphibious force-in-readiness. As the Church is the Ship of Salvation, this is a perfect image of who we are as Legionnaires -- Marines working with and from the Church as a spiritual force-in-readiness to wage spiritual war against the Enemies of the Church. Thus, the mission of the Marines is well suited for the Spiritual Warrior.
Military ranks are traditionally divided into seven classifications:
Enlisted: The enlisted ranks are the apprentices and foot-soldiers who hold no command authority.Our enlisted ranks are the Aspirant, the Page, and the Squire (equivalent in the Marine Corp to Privates and Lance Corporals (in the U.S. Army a Lance Corporal is a Specialist), and in the Corporate world to workers). The Enlisted ranks perform basic but essential spiritual, prayer, or specialty tasks under supervision of a Knight Bachelor.
Non-Commissioned Officers: Non-commissioned officers are promoted through the ranks based upon merit and experience rather than by commission granted by the Council of Knights or other competent authority.Our non-commissioned officers are the Knights Bachelor, equivalent in the Marine Corp to Corporal and the varying degrees of Sergeant, and in the corporate world as leaders, floor managers, supervisors, and foremen.Knights Bachelor are trained, skilled, and experienced Knights who operate under the command of a Knights Esquire (Warrant Officer) in specialty fields, or under the command of Warrior Knights (junior commissioned officers). Knights Bachelor are given delegated authority of command, and have care and direct control over other non-commissioned officers and the enlisted ranks. Knights Bachelor often function in the field with some independence under the general oversight of a higher ranking officer, or as Executive Officers to Warrior Knights.The rank of Knight Bachelor Prior, the first of the senior Knight Bachelor ranks, requires successful completion of the Knight Bachelor Academy.
Warrant Officers: Warrant Officers are also non-commissioned. They normally rise through the ranks and are appointed to perform tasks and leadership in specific specialties.Our warrant officers are the Knights Esquire. These Knights are specialists in their field of apostolate (equivalent in the corporate world as technical managers). Knights Esquire are trained, skilled, and experienced in their field of specialty. They also supervise and lead the Knights Bachelor in the specific technical or specialty areas to which they work.Knights Esquire often remain at this rank classification in order to continue to work on their specialties rather than to move on to the commissioned ranks of Knights.
Cadet Officers: Cadets are student Knights who undergo a specific program of training before commissioning as an officer.Our cadet officers are those enrolled in our Knight Banneret Candidate School or our Spiritual Warfare Academy. The students have cadet rank symbols within the School or Academy. Upon graduation the student is normally commissioned a Knight Banneret 2nd Class (equivalent to a 2nd Lieutenant).
Junior Officers (Warrior Knights): To be appointed to the commissioned ranks, a candidate must receive the proper training and evaluation for fitness as an officer and then receive a commission (a document that specifically authorizes the candidate to enter the commissioned ranks) from the Council of Knights or other competent authority.Our junior commissioned officers are the Knights Banneret and the Knight (equivalent in the Marine Corp to 1st and 2nd Lieutenants, and Captain, and in the corporate world as managers). The Junior Knights also called Warrior Knights because they are more directly on the front lines than the higher ranking officers. The Warrior Knights are not Lords (senior officers) and thus are not part of the Council of Lords. The Warrior Knights may have field commands of smaller units and apostolates or branches of larger apostolates, but are not expected to operate independently for any significant length of time. This class of Knight may also fill staff roles under a Lord Knight.
Senior (Field) Officers: Field Officers are the commanders in the field who carry out the policies, orders, and directives of the Flag Officers.Our field officers are the three levels of Lord Knights (equivalent in the Marine Corp to Major, Lt. Colonel, and Colonel, and in the corporate world as middle managers). The Lord Knights typically command mid-to-large sized apostolates and field units and can be expected to operate independently for short periods of time. Lord Knights also commonly fill staff positions of superior commands.
General (Flag) Officers: Flag Officers are the overseers and executives of LSM.Our flag officers are the Lord Knights Prime, and the Lord Knights Paladin, (equivalent in the Marine Corp to 1-4 Star Generals, and in the corporate world as executives). The flag officers assist the Lord Knight of the Cross, who is equivalent in the military to a 5-star general/admiral, and in the corporate world as CEO, to run and administer the LSM through his personal staff, the Curia, or by command of regional, provincial, or global apostolates and units. Flag officers are expected to operate independently for extended periods of time.Note: the term flag officer comes from the traditional practice of showing when a general officer (Admiral) is on-board ship or on post by a flying a flag that represents his command. Our Flag Officers may also have a flag, or banner, in the tradition of Knights, that represents their respective commands.
Concerning the different terminologies for men and women in ranks of chivalry:
the female equivalent to Lord is Lady
the female equivalent to Sir is Dame
a female Knight is an Chevalière
other terms for which there is really no direct equivalent usually are latinized with ette, trix, or ess suffixes, as in Bachelorette, Banneretrix, Squiress, Esquiress, Commandertrix, etc. These conventions are too forced to be useful.Thus, we borrow from a military tradition of not adopting female versions to ranks, with the exception of using Lady in lieu of Lord, Dame in lieu of Sir, and in monastic tradition using Prioress in lieu of Prior and Hegumenia in lieu of Hegumen.
Referenced in the rank descriptions are various Command Levels. The Command Levels may be defined in three ways:
Divisional Structure: This is the traditionally military definition based upon the number of troops per unit and number of units per each level.
Operational Team Structure: This approach defines the various Command Levels according to operational distinctions and the various spheres of leadership within various teams. The number of troops per unit or the number of units per level are less important and may or may not correlate together.
Combined: The combined method uses both the Divisional and the Operational Team approach in a manner to most efficiency manage and utilize resources.
At this time, since we are just getting started with only a handful of people, the most practical definition for us to use is the Operational Team Structure defining Command Levels according to operational distinctions and the various spheres of leadership.
The Command Levels that are mentioned in the rank descriptions are:
Roundtable House of Lords: The Roundtable House of Lords consists of all Lord Knight ranks. Its executive committee, the Council of Lords, also seats representatives of the General Council of Commons (non-Lord ranks). The Roundtable House of Lords decides overall policy. The Council of Lords performs general oversight of LSM.
LSM Command HQ: This is the overall command level for the LSM, equivalent to a Board of Directors. It consists of the Lord Knight of the Cross, his Chief of Staff (a Lord Knight Supreme Paladin), Regional and Provincial commanders, Council of Knights, and various advisory and support staff.
Region: A Region may consist of two or more Provinces, or may have other operational purposes as defined by the Council of Lords. A Region is commanded by a Lord Knight Supreme Paladin.
Province: A Province may consist of two or more Divisions, or may have other operational purposes as defined by the Council of Lords. A Province is commanded by a Lord Knight Paladin.
Division: A Division may consists of two or more Brigades, or may have other operational purposes as defined by LSM Command HQ. A Division is commanded by a Lord Knight Prime Commander.
Brigade: A Brigade may consist of two or more Regiments, or may have other operational purposes as defined by LSM Command HQ. A Brigade is commanded by a Lord Knight Prime Lt. Commander.
Regiment: A Regiment may consist of two or more Battalions, or may have other operational purposes as defined by LSM Command HQ. A Regiment is commanded by a Lord Knight Commander.
Battalion: A Battalion may consist of two or more Companies, or may have other operational purposes as defined by LSM Command HQ. A Battalion is commanded by a Lord Knight Lt. Commander.
Company: A Company may consist of two or more Groups, or may have other operational purposes as defined by LSM Command HQ. A Company is commanded by a Knight.
Group: A Group may consist of two or more Tactical Units, or may have other operational purposes as defined by LSM Command HQ. A Group is commanded by a Knight.
Tactical Unit: A Tactical Unit may consist of two or more Tactical Teams, or may have other operational purposes as defined by LSM Command HQ. A Tactical Unit is commanded by a Knight Banneret or a Knight Banneret Lieutenant.
Tactical Team: A Tactical Team consists of two or more Legionnaires commanded by a Team Leader who is usually a Knight Bachelor Sub-Prior, Knight Bachelor Regular, or a Knight Bachelor Oblate. Sometimes a Squire may hold this position.
In military tradition the colors of insignia and devices are different than that typical in sports awards. In the military the ranking of colors in descending order is Silver, Gold, and then Bronze.
Click on the Ribbon for a pop-up window with definitions of the rank.
Rank of Chivalry
Symbol of Rank
Page, 1st Class
Non-Commissioned Officer Ranks
Knight Bachelor Oblate
Knight Bachelor Regular
Knight Bachelor Sub-Prior
Knight Bachelor Prior
Knight Bachelor Hegumen
Knight Bachelor Chancellor
Knight Bachelor Prime
Knight Bachelor Paladin
Knight Bachelor Provost Paladin
Cadet Recruit(beginning mod 1)
Cadet Page(completion mod 1)
Cadet Squire(completion mod 3)
Cadet Bachelor(completion mod 5)
Cadet Banneret(completion mod 7)
Cadet Captain(completion practicum 3)
Cadet Major(completion internship)
Cadet Lt. Commander(completion mod13/2nd top)
Cadet Commander(completion mod 14/top cadet)
Warrant Officer Ranks
Knight Esquire Chief
Knight Esquire Senior Chief
Knight Esquire Master Chief
Knight Esquire Prime
Junior Officer (Warrior Knight) Ranks
Knight Banneret Lieutenant
Field Officer Ranks
Lord Knight Lt. Commander
Lord Knight Commander
Flag Officer Ranks
Lord Knight Prime Lt. Commander
Lord Knight Prime Commander
Lord Knight Paladin
Lord Knight Supreme Paladin
Lord Knight Visitor
Lord Knight of the Cross