Deutschmeister Tradition Day

Every 18 June, the “Deutschmeister” celebrate their traditional day in commemoration of the Battle of Kolin in 1757, in which the Austrians succeeded in defeating the Prussian King Frederick II for the first time thanks to the special efforts of the “Hoch- und Deutschmeister”. In honour of this military achievement, 18 June was declared Tradition Day of the “Hoch- und Deutschmeister” and is celebrated by the military successor organisations, currently the “Jägerbataillon Wien 1 Hoch- und Deutschmeister”, as well as the “Deutschmeisterbund” with its traditional groups.

The 2024 ceremony took place at the residence of the Teutonic Order in the heart of Vienna. The celebrations began with a festive church service, celebrated by H.E. Grand Master P. MMag. Dipl.-Bw. (FH) Frank Bayard, MBA. Afterwards, the band “Kapelle Original Hoch- und Deutschmeister” under the direction of Kapellmeister Reinhold Nowotny performed a musical programme as part of a concert in the square, which delighted all those present.

During the official part of the event, the President of the „Deutschmeisterbund“ and Media Officer of the UEHMG Lieutenant Colonel Andreas Tarbuk welcomed numerous guests of honour, including the Procurator of the Order of St. George Baron Vinzenz von Stimpfl-Abele as well as the President of the Union of European Historical Military Groups Major General iTR Michael Blaha, MSc, who represented the historical traditions of the highest umbrella organisation. In his speech, H.E. Grand Master Frank Bayard emphasised the great importance of the connection between the spiritual authority, which has always been provided by the Teutonic Order for the “Hoch- und Deutschmeister”, and the military associations throughout history, which has endured to this day and which was once again underlined by this ceremony.

Baron Vinzenz von Stimpfl-Abele emphasised the importance of tradition, especially in disorientating times like these: “Traditions are our living connection with the past and at the same time a bridge to the future. They are an expression of timeless values and principles that are worth passing on from generation to generation.” The courage to take responsibility for protecting and maintaining tradition is therefore very important for a society. The commitment of organisations such as the “Deutschmeisterbund”, but also the knightly orders, cannot be valued highly enough, especially today. “Because we know our roots, we know our values and we are raising the flag – each in our own way, but by joining forces. This gives us reason for hope and optimism for the future. VIRIBUS UNITIS!” concluded the Procurator.

President Major General iTR Michael Blaha, MSc, took the opportunity, in the presence of Secretary General Captain iTR Christian Zehetmayer and Financial Officer Financial Councillor iTR Frank Kasteliz, to award our deserving comrade Corvette Captain iTR Peter Hofer the Merit Mark of the UEHMG for his many years of support in keeping up tradition.

After the ceremonial speeches and honours, the social part of the Tradition Day began. In glorious imperial weather, the guests had the opportunity for many conversations and personal exchanges at the residence of the Teutonic Order. The event was a great success, characterised by the dignity of the occasion and the joy of being together. We would like to thank the Teutonic Order and the “Deutschmeisterbund” for their hospitality!