Barry Christopher Knestout

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His Excellency, The Most Reverend
Barry Christopher Knestout
Auxiliary Bishop of Washington
Titular Bishop of Leavenworth
Archdiocese Washington
Appointed November 18, 2008
Installed December 29, 2008
Other posts Titular Bishop of Leavenworth
Ordination June 24, 1989
by James Aloysius Hickey
Consecration December 29, 2008
by Donald Wuerl, Francisco González Valer, and Martin Holley
Personal details
Born (1962-06-11) June 11, 1962 (age 55)
Cheverly, Maryland
Styles of
Barry Christopher Knestout
Coat of arms of Barry Christopher Knestout.svg
Reference style
Spoken style Your Excellency
Religious style Bishop

Barry Christopher Knestout (born June 11, 1962) is an American prelate of the Roman Catholic Church. He currently serves as an auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Washington.

Early life[edit]

Barry Knestout was born in Cheverly, Maryland, to Thomas (d. 1997) and Caroline Knestout. His father was a deacon who served as a cryptologist for the National Security Agency and as the director of the Office of the Permanent Diaconate for the Archdiocese of Washington.[1] One of nine children, he has five brothers and three sisters.[2] A younger brother, Mark, is also a priest and serves as the director of the Archdiocesan Office of Worship.[3]

As a child, Knestout lived with his family in Ankara, Turkey, for four years before returning to the United States, where he attended St. Pius X School in Bowie and Bowie Senior High School.[4] He then studied at the University of Maryland, from where he obtained a Bachelor's degree in architecture in 1984.[4] In 1985, he entered Mount St. Mary's Seminary in Emmitsburg, earning a Master's in Divinity (1988) and a Master of Arts in Moral Theology (1989).[5]


Knestout was ordained to the priesthood by James Cardinal Hickey on June 24, 1989.[6] He then served as associate pastor at St. Bartholomew's Parish in Bethesda until 1993 and at St. Peter's Parish in Waldorf from 1993 to 1994.[4] Knestout was named priest-secretary to Cardinal Hickey in 1994, and remained in that position until Hickey's death in 2004; he also served in the same capacity to Theodore Cardinal McCarrick from 2003 to 2004. He was raised to the rank of Monsignor in 1999, and was executive director of the Archdiocesan Office of Youth Ministry from 2001 to 2003.[4]

Knestout became pastor of St. John the Evangelist Parish in Silver Spring in 2004, and Archdiocesan Secretary for Pastoral Life and Social Concerns in 2006.[4] In April 2007, he was named moderator of the curia and vicar for administration of the Archdiocese. Knestout co-chaired the Papal Visit Planning Committee in 2008, overseeing many of the preparations for Pope Benedict XVI's visit to the United States in April of that year. He also oversaw a contest for architecture students from the Catholic University of America to design the altar and chair used by Benedict XVI at the Mass at the Washington Nationals baseball stadium.[4] He was later awarded a Holy Cross Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice for his work.[7]

Episcopal career[edit]

On November 18, 2008, Knestout was appointed titular Bishop of Leavenworth and an auxiliary bishop for Washington by Pope Benedict XVI.[6] He was consecrated on December 29 by Archbishop Donald Wuerl, with Bishops Francisco González Valer, S.F., and Martin Holley serving as co-consecrators, at the Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle.[6]

He is the first native of Prince George's County to serve as a bishop for the Archdiocese of Washington.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Deacons Son: A New Bishop in Washington, D.C.". Catholic Online. 2008-12-30. Archived from the original on 2011-06-06. 
  2. ^ Zimmerman, Mark (2008-11-18). "Pope Benedict names Msgr. Knestout as auxiliary bishop for Washington". My Catholic Standard. 
  3. ^ a b Zimmerman, Mark (2008-12-30). "Bishop Barry Knestout ordained as new auxiliary bishop for Washington". My Catholic Standard. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f "Bishop Barry C. Knestout". Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Washington. Archived from the original on 2008-12-27. 
  5. ^ "Pope Names Msgr. Barry Knestout Auxiliary Bishop of Washington". United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. 2008-11-18. 
  6. ^ a b c "Bishop Barry Christopher Knestout". 
  7. ^ Palmo, Rocco (2008-11-19). "The Visit Over, It's Gong Time". Whispers in the Loggia. 

External links[edit]

Episcopal succession[edit]

Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Auxiliary Bishop of Washington
Succeeded by