The second is the Military Order of Christ in Portugal.
The Knights Templar order was disbanded by the Pope in 1312.
James Becker spent more than twenty years in the Royal Navy's Fleet Air Arm.
Throughout his career, he has been involved in covert operations in many of the world's hot spots, including Yemen, Russia, and Northern Ireland.
In the process, they became far wealthier than most of the states they counted as their clients and invented the essentials of the modern banking system.
But can their shadowy influence be seen or felt today?
In 1319, the Military Order of Christ was established, consisting almost entirely of former Templars who continued conducting business in exactly the same way as they had always done.
The Templars were undone as a result of an unholy alliance between Pope Clement V and King Philip IV of France.
Forced out of the Holy Land by the Islamic reconquest, the Knights returned to Europe, where their wealth and privileges increasingly brought them into conflict with the nobility, church, and other representatives of the established feudal order.
In 1307, King Philip IV of France, “Philip the Fair,” arrested the leaders of the Knights Templar on trumped-up charges of heresy, and in 1312, after a protracted political struggle, Pope Clement V officially disbanded the Order.