The Knights Templar were and are still considered one of the most influential Christian orders in the history of religions. For over two centuries, the Knights enjoyed considerable fame and power, which itself led to a calamitous fall. What exactly happened to the prominent institution?
Ironically, what caused the downfall of the order was in a way or another what gave them power, which is their wealth and fame. After they have arrived in Europe, they were able to accumulate large amounts of gold and riches, which helped me spread their power all over the continent.
They became so powerful that they only responded to the Pope. However, their illimited strength caused the attention of so many enemies, most notably, the king of France, Philip IV, who was able to put the order down.
Despite their fame, there was so much unclearness surrounding their religious rituals, which served as a convincing enough excuse for the execution of some members. Some opponents accused them of heretics.
One particular enemy of the order was the main reason the Pope turned against them. After King Philip drove France into debt, he started chasing money from external sources. He began by taking over the Church, by killing two Popes, and by moving their office to France, instead of Rome. He also banished the Jews from France after taking away their money.
For the same reason, he came after the Templars by violating the decree that states that the order should only answer to the Pope and arrested them. He charged the Templars with wicked acts, including homosexuality and the performance of unobserved religious rituals. He tortured the Knights, attempting to make them confess for sinful acts.
Friday the 13th, 1307, was the beginning of the fall of the Templars, where all the followers were arrested under false accusation. Their end began when they were mercilessly killed by direct orders of King Philip IV, in desperate need of their riches.