Today the Secretariat of State of the Holy See has issued the following statement:
In response to frequent requests for information concerning the recognition by the Holy See of Equestrian Orders dedicated to the saints or to holy places, the Secretariat of State considers it opportune to reiterate what has already been published, namely that, other than its own Equestrian Orders (the Supreme Order of Christ, the Order of the Golden Spur, the Pian Order, the Order of Saint Gregory the Great, and the Order of Pope Saint Sylvester), the Holy See recognises and supports only the Sovereign Military Order of Malta - also known as the Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of Saint John of Jerusalem of Rhodes and of Malta - and the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem. The Holy See foresees no additions or innovations in this regard.
All other orders, whether of recent origin or mediaeval foundation, are not recognised by the Holy See. Furthermore, the Holy See does not guarantee their historical or juridical legitimacy, their ends or organisational structures.
To avoid any possible doubts, even owing to illicit issuing of documents or the inappropriate use of sacred places, and to prevent the continuation of abuses which may result in harm to people of good faith, the Holy See confirms that it attributes absolutely no value whatsoever to certificates of membership or insignia issued by these groups, and it considers inappropriate the use of churches or chapels for their so-called "ceremonies of investiture".
For clarification this statement does not effect the Sacred Military Constantinian Order of St George whose Grand Magistry in Rome issued the following statement:
"We welcome the helpful re-publication by the Vatican Secretariat of State of its position concerning the recognition by the Holy See of numerous Equestrian Orders. This position is longstanding, well understood and appreciated by the Constantinian Order.
Such positions do not effect the Constantinian Order which is neither an Order of the Holy See or under the protection of the Holy See. As is well known the Constantinian Order is an internationally recognised dynastic Catholic Order of Knighthood of the Royal House of Bourbon Two Sicilies which undertakes faith-based charitable, humanitarian and hospitaller activities throughout Italy and overseas.
The Constantinian Order in 2013 will mark 50 years of formal recognition by the Italian State by decree of successive Presidents of the Italian Republic. The Constantinian Order also maintains Consultative Status of the Economic and Social Council at the United Nations in New York, Geneva and Vienna and is recognised by many governments throughout the world.
In 2003 the Holy Father, Pope John Paul II, appointed HE Cardinal Mario Francesco Pompedda as the Ecclesiastical Counsellor of the Constantinian Order, under the grandmastership of HRH The Duke of Castro, and today the Order maintains a good working relationship with the Catholic Church throughout Italy and overseas. The Grand Prior of the Order is His Eminence Renato Raffaele, Cardinal Martino, who succeeded His Eminence Alberto Cardinal Vanhoye. The Order's knights and dames also benefit from the longstanding spiritual guidance of numerous cardinals, archbishops and bishops across the world".