Rhode Island Catholics installed as knights of holy order

Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem welcomes Priests and Laity Among Newest Members

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­MANCHESTER, N.H. — At an October 27 Mass celebrated at St. Joseph Cathedral by the Most Rev. John B. McCormack, Bishop of Manchester, several members of the Rhode Island clergy and laity were invested as Knights in the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, an order with more than 900 years of history of individuals who have demonstrated a true commitment to the teachings of the Catholic Church.

Diocesan priests invested as Knights in the order were Rev. Bernard Healey, Rev. Roger Houle, Rev. Albert Kenney and Rev. Henry Zinno. Dominican priests Very Rev. William Marquis and Rev. Matthew Morry were also invested, as were Albert Staebler and Raymond Holland Jr. as Knights, and Karen A. Holland as a Lady Knight.

The Order states that its mission is to enhance the members’ own spiritual life and to assist in the preservation of a living and viable Christian presence in the Holy Land that is held dear by all Catholics because it is the land where “The Lord was born, preached, died and redeemed Catholics.”

“It’s wonderful to be part of this charitable order that promotes peace and unity among Catholics, Jews and Muslims who live in the Holy Land,” said Father Zinno, pastor of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church, Bristol.

The Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre it is a renowned and worldwide Catholic order of knighthood that is comprised of lay and clerical members who have distinguished themselves in adhering to the teachings of the Catholic Church and performing meritorious service in their parish and diocese. Those who nominate and approve of the candidates express their beliefs that the nominees possess all of the characteristics that merit their investiture in this special apostolate of the church, one of the oldest international Catholic orders of chivalry.

“It was an honor for me to have been invested into the Equestrian Order of the Knights of the Holy Sepulchre,” said Dominican Father William P. Marquis, prior of the Dominican community at Providence College. “I look forward to doing what I can to contribute in some way to the order’s mission to assist our brothers and sisters who live in the Holy Land.”

“I was very impressed by the rite of Chivalry, conferring the rank of Knight and Lady in the order and also the warmth and courtesy of the other Knights and Ladies in attendance,” said Ray Holland, one of three lay people invested.

The order reports that it was founded in 1099 to safeguard holy sites in the Holy Land, especially the tomb of Christ and reports 22,000 members in 31 countries throughout the world.

Clergy and laity are nominated by order members and approved by their local ordinary.

For more information about the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, visit www.holysepulchre.net.