by NZ CATHOLIC staff
AUCKLAND — An ancient order of knighthood will conduct its first New Zealand investiture, in Auckland on November 26.
The Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, a Catholic order of chivalry, began in the 11th-century Christian kingdom of Jerusalem. It traces its origins to the knights who guarded the Holy Sepulchre — the tomb of Jesus — and who protected pilgrims making the hazardous journey to Jerusalem.
The Apostolic Nuncio, Archbishop Charles Balvo, will invest the Bishop of Auckland, Bishop Patrick Dunn, as prior of the order in New Zealand during a special 5pm Mass at St Patrick’s Cathedral.
Bishop Dunn will then invest six aspirants — John Gibbs, Patricia Gribble, James Gribble, Suzanne McCarthy, Patrick McCarthy and Marie Quinn.
On the previous evening the aspirants will take part in a vigil at St John’s Church, Parnell, which has been designated the patronal church of the order in Auckland.
[ad-engine ad_group=”Community_Events”]In modern times the order has become a society that sustains and helps religious, spiritual, charitable and social works in the Holy Land, particularly schools, orphanages, refugees, summer camps for children, churches, relief and welfare organisations, homes for the elderly and disabled and training for teachers from Jordan, the Palestinian Territories and Israel.
Members are also expected to undertake a pilgrimage to the Holy Land.
For an initial period the New Zealand membership will be a section of the lieutenancy of New South Wales. The president of the New Zealand section will be James Bickford, who has the rank of knight commander.
Male members wear an ivory cape with a red Jerusalem cross and a black beret. Female members wear a black cape with a Jerusalem cross and lace mantilla.