The Order of the Holy Sepulcher renews its commitment to the Holy Land alongside the Latin Patriarchate

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Riunione Consulta 2023_Pizzaballa - 1

Heads of the Order of the Holy Sepulcher from all over the world – 150 people from about 40 countries – gathered this week in Rome for the Consulta, the general assembly of our Pontifical Institution held every four years around our Grand Master, Cardinal Fernando Filoni, and led by our Governor General, H.E. Leonardo Visconti di Modrone. For the first time, along with the Lieutenants and the Magistral Delegates – lay people in charge of the local government of the Order – the spiritual leaders of the Knights and Dames, called the Grand Priors, were also present. 

Due to the tragic situation unfolding in the Holy Land, the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem and Grand Prior of the Order, Cardinal Pierbattista Pizzaballa, was unable to attend. However, he joined the opening plenary session remotely, by connecting online. His description of the current events and, in particular, of the suffering of the local population touched us deeply, and we reached out to him through a letter hand-signed by all of us. Now more than ever, we wish to express our closeness and total support to the Mother Church of Jerusalem: this has always been our task and mission.

Received by Pope Francis, we were grateful for his words: “The Empty Tomb, of which, for centuries and by vocation, you have committed yourselves to be special Custodians, is in this sense above all a sign of the boundless love of the Crucified One, who holds nothing for Himself and who therefore cannot be held back by the strings of death; it is a sign of the victory of the Risen One, in whom we too find life.”

The topic of the formation of the members of the Order, which was at the center of our Consulta, brought us back to the heart of our call: to make alive today the mystery of Christ's Death and Resurrection through our witness of hope and concrete solidarity. We commit ourselves alongside the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem in this arduous task, on behalf of the Universal Church.

“I am spiritually united with you, who certainly live this meeting of the Consulta sharing the great sorrow of the Mother Church of Jerusalem, and imploring the gift of peace,” Pope Francis also said. As men and women of faith, we are close to the suffering of all the innocent victims of the conflict and, united with the Holy Father, we continue to pray that a just solution may be found and that peace, a gift from above that has never seemed more distant, may be granted to this Holy Land.


(November 2023)