|INTERNATIONAL - The Grandmaster is happy to announce to the Order that we have a new Ecclesiastical Grand Prior|
It is with great joy that we announce the appointment of our new Ecclesiastical Grand Prior of the Order, H.E. the Most Reverend Archbishop Michele Pennisi, Abbot and Archbishop of Monreale (Sicily, Italy), Abbot of Santa Maria del Bosco.
According to the Order’s Constitution, this significant appointment was made by the Grand Master after consultation with the Order’s Spiritual Protector, our beloved Patriarch, who gave his blessing and approval.
According to our Constitution the Ecclesiastical Grand Prior of the Order, with the support of a Spiritual Advisory Council, will provide counsel and support to the national jurisdictions, and advise the Grand Master and the Grand Magistral Council on all matters of ecclesiology and spirituality of the Order.
As a Principal Grand Officer of the Order, the Ecclesiastical Grand Prior is an ex-officio member of all the Order’s main committees, including the Grand Executive Committee and Grand Magistral Council. He is the chairman of the Spiritual Advisory Council and the Ecumenical Commission. In addition, the Ecclesiastical Grand Prior’s presence is important for some events such as Vigils and Investitures or our periodic Pilgrimages to a Holy Shrine.
He also provides a significant connection with the Order’s Spiritual Protector. By ancient tradition, the Spiritual Protector of the Order is His Beatitude the Melchite-Greek Catholic Patriarch of Antioch and all the East, of Alexandria and of Jerusalem.
Today the Spiritual Protector of The Order is His Beatitude Gregorios III Laham. He is the guardian of our spiritual integrity. With the assistance of, and in collaboration with the Ecclesiastical Grand Prior of the Order, our Spiritual Protector shall provide spiritual support and guidance to the Order, and his position helps us to be closer to the Eastern Churches and the Holy Land.