Open Letter

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UN-NGO Autologo 200

Organization in Special Consultative Status with the United Nations-ECOSOC since 2014
Nominated for the Peace Nobel Prize 2017
ZVR-Number: 023914681

Public Letter

To all extraordinary members of the Lazarus Union, Group members as well as friendly organisations and to those who are interested

Vienna, 18.03.2019

In light of recent events I draw attention to the following:

Since the beginning of the year, the LAZARUS UNION has been exposed to permanent “mobbing”. The reasons for this are unknown to the LAZARUS UNION and also not understandable, since the LAZARUS UNION deals with all (and the LAZARUS UNION means with really all) people peacefully and respectfully. As our mission statement and policy statement foresee.

Recently there was an article in the newspaper „DER STANDARD” that contains some incorrect statements about the LAZARUS UNION. I am therefore obliged to care for clarification by this public letter because the article contains not only incorrect statements about insignificant items.

In this article the LAZARUS UNION is designated as a „pseudo Knightly Order“ or as a „curious Knightly Order“ although our publication show clearly and unambiguously that the LAZARUS UNION is neither a spiritual nor a secular order but a worldwide charitable organisation that is registered as an association under Austrian law. The newspaper “DER STANDARD” even claims that the LAZARUS UNION is “… part of a right-wing extremist network …”. A shamefulness and a nonsense beyond compare!

The LAZARUS UNION is non-political, pacifist and non-denominational and will remain so!

The „Knighthood of Honour of the Lazarus Union“ that uses a certain symbolism of knightly orders is just a „closer association“ of members who have proved particularly. The statutes confirm this because they specifically say that „…… the LAZARUS UNION is neither a „spiritual order“ or a „specular order“ and that the LAZARUS UNION does not claim or seek such a status for itself.”– excepting the maintenance of knightly traditions and virtues because these things are essential basics of the principles of the LAZARUS UNION and are enshrined in the statutes of its “Knighthood of Honour”. The LAZARUS UNION is an independent association that does not want to be confused with other „Lazarus Formations“ and will not copy them.

Therefore the designation as a „curious knightly order in Austria“ does not correspond with the actual facts.

This (ritual) form of „living community” may seem curious for some people but it should be pointed out that nowadays there are enough people who like to live this form of charity. The statutes of the LAZARUS UNION clearly show that all activities are voluntary and without any force. If you don’t like it you don’t like it and you don’t need to take part in.

NOBODY will be traditionally accolated. Indeed this ceremony just confirms the commitment to the community. The fact that the expectant does not kneel during the ceremony shows that this commitment cannot be compared with (real/supposed) knightly orders.

For everybody who is interested I will be pleased to give an insight into a „world“ that may be strange and will problably stay strange. This world never intends to impair others (being a member of the LAZARUS UNION) is for free and therefore no „ranks“ or „knighthoods“ will be purchased).

Furthermore the newspaper article claims that André S. „got the accolade“. This claim is not true. Indeed he was designated as a Knight Expectant. To examine candidates for the Knighthood of Honour, a period of about two years or more elapses from this admission, until the request can be made to be finally accepted as a Knight of Honour in the Knighthood of the Lazarus Union.

Furthermore I want to point out that would not have gotten the status of a NGO with „„Special Consultative Status“ with the United Nations and would not have gotten the candidacy for the next level „General Consultative Status“ for the UN-committee ECOSOC if we would pursue the methods of self styled orders“.

Finally please allow me to say that the Lazarus Union has absolutely nothing to do with the assassination in Christchurch! It has to be pointed out that there is no connection between the LAZARUS UNION and the horrible incident. The named association is no member of the LAZARUS UNION.

It is very sad that the press decreases and degrades the working of the LAZARUS UNION by such untrue statements. Therefore it would be fair and indicated that the press would correct them accordingly – especially concerning the designation as a “curious knightly order” and “pseudo knightly order”. These designations disparage the LAZARUS UNION in public opinion.

Therefore, the question also arises whether here it was not published intentionally wrong and untruths have been disseminated in order to harm the LAZARUS UNION. Even if the untruth has been published the truth will ultimately prevail. Since the STANDARD was informed about all the things and also confirmed in an email to the LAZARUS UNION “… that our comprehensive chronicle is known there, …” these “mistakes” are all the more worrying.

We are also currently examining whether this incorrect information about the LAZARUS UNION does not also comply with the offense §111 StGB “Defamation” (see legal text in the footnote [1]), or whether such statements are classified as “press freedom” and “have to be tolerated “

You can trust the LAZARUS UNION!

Best regards

Senator Prof.h.c. Wolfgang Steinhardt
General Plenipotentiary

[1] §111 StGB – Defamation

No official English version

(1) Anyone accusing another in a manner perceptible to a third party of a contemptible quality or disposition, or accusing of a dishonorable conduct or behavior contrary to morality, which is liable to scorn or discredit him in public opinion, shall be at Imprisonment up to six months or a fine of up to 360 daily sentences.

(2) Anyone who commits the offense in a printed matter, on the radio or otherwise in a way that makes the slander public accessible to a broad public shall be punished with imprisonment of up to one year or a fine of up to 720 daily rates.

(3) The offender should not be punished if the allegation is proven to be true. In the case of paragraph 1, the perpetrator is not to be punished even if circumstances are proven which have given the offender sufficient grounds to believe the allegation is true.

Official German version

(1) Wer einen anderen in einer für einen Dritten wahrnehmbaren Weise einer verächtlichen Eigenschaft oder Gesinnung zeiht oder eines unehrenhaften Verhaltens oder eines gegen die guten Sitten verstoßenden Verhaltens beschuldigt, das geeignet ist, ihn in der öffentlichen Meinung verächtlich zu machen oder herabzusetzen, ist mit Freiheitsstrafe bis zu sechs Monaten oder mit Geldstrafe bis zu 360 Tagessätzen zu bestrafen.

(2) Wer die Tat in einem Druckwerk, im Rundfunk oder sonst auf eine Weise begeht, wodurch die üble Nachrede einer breiten Öffentlichkeit zugänglich wird, ist mit Freiheitsstrafe bis zu einem Jahr oder mit Geldstrafe bis zu 720 Tagessätzen zu bestrafen.

(3) Der Täter ist nicht zu bestrafen, wenn die Behauptung als wahr erwiesen wird. Im Fall des Abs. 1 ist der Täter auch dann nicht zu bestrafen, wenn Umstände erwiesen werden, aus denen sich für den Täter hinreichende Gründe ergeben haben, die Behauptung für wahr zu halten.


Supplement of the Public Letter

28th March 2019

In the context of the public letter I want to inform about the following facts because I was asked as General Plenipotentiary of the Lazarus Union on various occasions during the last few days after publishing the public letter:

  1. After having learned about the accusations against UNITER e.V. as a preliminary measure we IMMEDIATELY suspended the group membership. After pictutres having been published with „weapons“ together with UNITER-logos, the LAZARUS UNION CANCELLED the membership of UNITER e.V. and of ALL members of the Lazarus Union who are also members of UNITER e.V. without any hesitation. These activities of UNITER e.V. do not agree with our statutes. It is not possible to act more consequently because in the case of an approved breach against the statutes of the LAZARUS UNION there can be no “presumption of innocence” within the LAZARUS UNION. Therefore the LAZARUS UNION cannot be reproached for any failure. It is especially worth noting that in that very moment when UNITER e.V: applied for the group membership it was not predictable for anybody in which direction the activities of UNITER e.V would move. The good and irreproachable name of the LAZARUS UNION was abused and its confidence disappointed.
  2. On 28th or March parliamentary questions concerning the UNITER-network and its connections to Austria were placed and answered in the meeting of the Austrian National Council within the “Current issue”. The Federal Minister of Interial Affairs Herbert Kickl provided clear answers to the questions and he determined that the LAZARUS UNION (and we were called in particular!) has nothing to do with the UNITER-network. This was clearly determined by the investigating authorities (Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution and Counterterrorism) and this determination took place together with foreign authorities like MAD and so on.

Therefore the Lazarus Union is fully vindicated and any other deviating accusations against the LAZARUS UNION will fail.

You can trust the LAZARUS UNION!

Best regards

Senator Prof.h.c. Wolfgang Steinhardt
General Plenipotentiary

Video cut of the speach of Secretary of Interior Mr.Kickl: