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A reader who knows about this sort of thing wrote me with this exciting news, which has gone largely unreported: it seems the fella just named the new auxiliary bishop for Washington, Msgr. Barry Knestout is the son of a deacon — and the first ever named to the order of bishop.
Not only that, but his brother, Mark, is a also a priest.
Which means (deep breath): one family, three orders.
(The bishop-to-be, like Your Humble Blogger, is also a Maryland boy, and a Terp, too. Bless him.)
You can read more about the good monsignor in the Washington Post
UPDATE: There’s a fine article about the monsignor and his deacon dad in this week’s Catholic Standard:
Bishop-elect Knestout was baptized at St. Ambrose Parish in Cheverly, and later grew up as a member of St. Pius X Parish in Bowie, with five brothers and three sisters. He is the son of the late Deacon Thomas Knestout, who headed the archdiocesan office for the permanent diaconate for many years, and Caroline Knestout, who worked as a nurse. In a 1989 interview, the future bishop said the example of his family played a key role in his vocation. Deacon Knestout would bring his children along with him as he ministered to a hospital that served people with disabilities.
“I was a seventh grader (then). He (dad) would cart us along, my brothers and me… We as a family felt very much a part of his vocation,” the future bishop said. He said he was also inspired by the “quiet service” of his mom.
In June 1989, Deacon Thomas Knestout and his son, Deacon Barry Knestout, served as deacons together at Mass for the first time at St. Pius X Church, bowing together reverently before the altar. Caroline Knestout said then that the biggest similarity between father and son was “their love for the Lord.”
What a beautiful tribute to his parents, eh?