History - Lieutenancy of the EOHSJ for Canada-Atlantic
The Lieutenancy of the Equestrian (Knightly) Order of the Holy Sepulchre for Canada-Atlantic
The beginnings of the Magistral Delegation of the EOHSJ of Canada-Atlantic goes back a number of years - but, that's another story. The concrete history begins with an exchange of correspondence between a few interested people in the Diocese of Antigonish and the Lieutenancy of Canada - Toronto in 1998.
Dr. Gerald R. Guest was the Lieutenant of the Canada-Toronto at the time and it was his dream to see the EOHSJ (the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem) have a presence on both coasts of Canada. The first step of his vision was realized when the Lieutenancy of Canada-Vancouver was created by Decree of the Cardinal Grand Master in 1997. The Canada-Toronto Lieutenancy was further expanded with the establishment of an Eastern Ontario Section of the Lieutenancy. Sir Brian Noonan, KC*HS and recipient of the Cross of Merit of the Order is the current President of the Eastern Ontario Section.
In May 1999, the Most Rev. Colin Campbell, Bishop of the Diocese of Antigonish was invested as a Knight Commander with Star, also known as a Knight Grand Officer, together with J. Stewart LeForte, of Little Bras d'Or, NS, who was invested as Knight. His Emminence, Aloysius Cardinal Ambrozic, Grand Prior of the Lieutenancy of Canada-Toronto was the Investing Prelate.
Stewart LeForte, KHS, was appointed Section President of the Toronto Lieutenancy for Atlantic Canada with H.E. Most Rev. Colin Campbell, KGOHS, being appointed Prior of the Section. For nearly 6 months there were only 2 members of the newly created Section. However, the Section held its first Investiture at St. Ninian Cathedral in Antigonish, NS. H.E. Gerald Guest, Lieutenant, Lady Marilyn Guest, LC*HS, and a large contingent of Knights and Ladies from Toronto and the Eastern Ontario Section were present for this historical event. H.E. Most Rev. Colin Campbell, KGOHS, was the presiding celebrant.
The Investiture activities began with the traditional Investiture vigil, recalling the ancient ritual of maintaining a Vigil the night before one's investiture as a Knight. The Vigil was held at Mt. St. Bernard Chapel on the campus of St. Francis Xavier University. The Sisters of the Congregation were gracious in providing their Chapel for the Vigil. A black tie banquet followed at the Greenway Claymore Inn for those being invested, their special guests and the visiting Knights and Ladies from the Lieutenancy of Canada-Toronto. Also on hand were H.E. Dr. Bernard Ficcara, KGCHS, (Lieutenant of Honour) and Lady Jean Ficcara, LGCHS who travelled from the United States to be present at the first Investiture of the Atlantic Canada Section.
The Investiture was held on Sunday at 2:00 pm in St. Ninian Cathedral. Among those invested were: Dorothy Brocklehurst, Barry Gabriel, Dr. Thomas Gaskell, Vincent MacLean and Joseph MacMullin together with some members from the Eastern Ontario Section. The Investiture was followed by the traditional Black Tie Banquet at which friends and family members of those invested gathered to celebrate and honour those who were invested.
With this first Investiture - the Atlantic Canada Section became a reality in fact as well as in name. The members met on a monthly basis in Sydney with the Section President and the Grand Prior to learn more about the Order and to discuss the situation in the Middle East.
The second Investiture, again held in Antigonish, was the source of great joy with the expansion of the Order to include members from the Archdiocese of Halifax. H.E. Archbishop Terrence Prendergast, SJ, Archbishop of Halifax, was the special guest speaker at the Investiture Banquet.
Among those invested were: Mary Augusta "Gussie" MacIntyre, Sydney; Dr. Patrick Atherton, Halifax, Dr. Charle V. Keating, Dartmouth, and Duncan MacIntyre, Sydney. H.E. Dr. Gerald Guest, Lieutenant of Toronto-Canada was present and he was joined by a number of Knights and Ladies who travelled from Ontario to be present for this Investiture. Prof. Michael MacDonald, who was teaching in Cairo at the time of the October Investiture was invested at a special ceremony held at Holy Angels Convent Chapel in Sydney in early December 2000.
The third and final Investiture of the Section, as a Section of the Lieutenancy of Canada-Toronto was held at St. Mary Basilica in Halifax. The Vigil was held on Saturday evening in the Basilica and this was followed by a banquet at the Halifax Westin. The Prior of the Section, presided at the Vigil Service. His Grace, Archbishop Terrance Prendergast, SJ, presided at Investiture Mass with H.E. Most Rev. Colin Campbell, KGOHS, presiding at the Investiture of the new knights.
The last members to be invested into the Atlantic Canada Section were: Jon Bekkers, Halifax; Michael Foran, Halifax; Kenneth P. Graham, Halifax; Margaret A. MacDonald, Sydney; Prof. Rev. Fr. Marc Smith, CSC, Fredericton, NB; and the V. Rev. John Williams, Rector of St. Mary Basilica, Halifax.
Special guests included: Brian Noonan, KCHS and Cross of Merit of the EOHSJ, who represented H.E. Augustine Arrigo, Lieutenant of Canada-Toronto (who was unable to be present); Brian Mallon, KGOHS, Secretary of the Lieutenancy of Scotland; Sir James and Lady Anna Meyer of Toronto, members of the EOHSJ - Toronto; Archbishop James Hayes, Archbishop Emeritus of Halifax, and Archbishop Austin Burke, Archbishop Emeritus of Halifax.
The conclusion of the Investiture Banquet was marked by the formal proclamation of the establishment of the Magistral Delegation of the EOHSJ for Canada - Atlantic. Brian Noonan, KGOHS, KM, Section President for Eastern Ontario read the decrees on behalf of H.E. Augustine Arrigo, who was unable to be present. Carlos Cardinal Furno, Grand Master of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, appointed H.E. Most Rev. Colin Campbell, KC*HS, as the Grand Prior of the newly created Magistral Delegation. J. Stewart LeForte, KHS, was appointed the Magistral Delegate for a term of four years.
All the members of the Atlantic-Canada Section were transferred to the newly created Magistral Delegation of Canada-Atlantic. The first Investiture of the Magistral Delegation was held on November 3 and 4 in Halifax at St. Mary Basilica.
The Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem now has 5 Lieutenancies in Canada: Quebec, Montreal, Toronto, and our own Canada-Atlantic (in order of creation). The Lieutenancy of Canada-Toronto has one section in Eastern Ontario; the Lieutenancy of Canada-Atlantic consists of two sections - Sydney and Halifax Sections.
The members of the Magistral Delegation of Canada-Atlantic are especially grateful to H.E. Dr. Gerald Guest, then Lieutenant of Canada-Toronto, for his dedication and foresight in creating the Atlantic Canada Section and in guiding it to the point where it could become an independant Magistral Delegation reporting directly to Rome. As well, special mention must be made of H.E. Augustine Arrigo, Lieutenant of Canada-Toronto and His Emminence, Aloysius Cardinal Ambrozic, for recommending and approving the establishment of the new Magistral Delegation. Our sincere gratitude is also extended to the members of the Lieutenancy Council who assisted the Section in so many way. Special mention must be made of Sir Patrick Rodriques, Lay Knight Master of Ceremonies for the Investitures in Antigonish and former member of the Council of the Toronto Lieutenancy.
[The only difference between a Lieutenancy and a Magistral Delegation is usually the number of members - a Magistral Delegation has all the duties and responsibilities of a Lieutenancy and is directly dependent upon the Cardinal Grand Master and the Grand Magisterium for approvals of its nominees and for direction and guidence in the functionning of the Delegation.]
Canada-Atlantic continued to function as a Magistral Delegation under the leadership of Fred MacGillivray, KGOHS, until 2011 when it was elevated to the status of a Lieutenancy of the Order and Fred became the First Lieutenant of the Order for Canada-Atlantic. He was succeeded by Stewart LeForte, KGCHS, and then by H.E. Trudy Comeau, KGOHS.
A Personal tribute Dr. Gerald R. Guest, KGCHS, by J. Stewart LeForte, KHS
Dr. Gerald R. Guest, a Doctor of Medicine, was invested as a Knight of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem in 1990 and was called upon to lead the Lieutenacy of Canada-Toronto by Cardinal Grand Master in 1992, after consultation with the previous Lieutenant and the Grand Prior of the Lieutenancy. While a person holds the position of Lieutenant within the Order, he is entitled to be called His Excellency.
While Lieutenant, H.E. Dr. Guest travelled extensively on behalf of the Order and instituted many reforms and presided over the expansion of the Order of the Holy Sepulchre (EOHSJ) from 'sea to sea' in Canada. He served two terms as Lieutenant of Canada-Toronto. The Magistral Delegation of Canada-Atlantic would not exist without his vision and commitment to the expansion of the Order and sustaining the needs of the Christian Church in the Holy Land. It was through his dedication that the beginnings of the Magistral Delegation took shape in the form of the Atlantic Canada Section of the Lieutenancy of Canada - Toronto.
H.E. Dr. Guest was one of the participants in the 1998 Consulta of the Order in Rome which drafted the guidelines for the renewal of the Order for the Third Millinieum of Christianity. On August 19th, 2001, Dr. Gerald Guest, MD, was promoted to Knight Grand Cross of the Order and awarded the Golden Palms of the Order by his successor, H.E. Augustine Arrigo, KC*HS, with the approval of the Grand Prior of the Lieutenancy, Cardinal Ambrozic.
Dr. Guest, KGCHS, is also a Oblate of the Order of St. Benedict and is affliated with Stanbrook Abbey, England. He is currently preparing a series of books for publication.
Marilyn Guest, LC*HS, a lovely and gracious lady in the true sense of the word, has been a faithfull and faith-filled member of the Order as well as a strong moral support for her husband in his duties as the Lieutenant of Canada-Toronto for his 8 years of service in that post.