Category Archives: Knights of Columbus

Carl Anderson: we are called to transform society — looks to JFK, sets path

Thumbnail image for Anderson with US flag.jpgCarl A. Anderson, the Supreme Knight of the Knights of Columbus, gave a lecture in Boston’s famed Faneuil Hall on President John F. Kennedy’s faith known in the inaugural address. The President was a KofC member. Anderson uses history, philosophy and theology to demonstrate that our human rights come from God, thus they are sacred rights. The location of the talk was brilliant given the tensions between Church and secularism. Anderson’s talk follows:

Your Eminence, Cardinal O’Malley; Your Excellencies, Archbishop Wenski, Bishop Lori and Bishop Kennedy; Reverend Fathers; Seminarians; Members of the Board of Directors and State Officers of the Knights of Columbus; Members of the Boston Leadership Forum; Brother Knights; Ladies and Gentlemen – fellow Citizens…

Here at Faneuil Hall, in this historic setting, the injustices of the colonial system were first addressed. It was here that the Sugar Act was protested more than a decade before the Declaration of Independence. Here that the Tea Tax was protested. And here the Boston Massacre was recounted. Here too was born the idea that there should be “no taxation without representation.”

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Making God’s Work Our Own: Carl Anderson talks about JFK’s enduring importance

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Knights of Columbus mourn death of Judge John M. Roll, other victims in Tucson

Judge John Roll.jpgNEW HAVEN, CT–Supreme Knight Carl A. Anderson today
expressed “profound sadness” at the shooting deaths of U.S. District Court
Judge John M. Rolland five others in Tucson on Saturday.  He asked the 1.8
million members of the Knights of Columbus and their families to pray for the
recovery of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and 12 other people who were seriously
injured in the attack, and for the repose of the souls of those who died.

Roll, who was the chief judge for the District of Arizona, was a Fourth Degree
member of the Knights of Columbus, and was a charter member of Deacon Raphael
Longpre Council 10441, and a member of Msgr. Hughes Assembly 2392, both in
Tucson.  He had been a member of the Knights of Columbus for 24
years. Members of the Fourth Degree will provide an honor guard at his
funeral next week.

“The senseless carnage in Tucson is a terrible tragedy for
the victims, their families, the people of Arizona and people of good will
everywhere,” Anderson said. “We feel a tremendous sense of loss at Judge
Roll’s death, and for all, young and old, who lost their lives in this
attack. We pray for God’s mercy on all who have been touched by this

“At a time like this, it is tempting to respond with anger, and for
some, to attempt to use the tragedy to stoke the fires of division. That
would only compound the tragedy,” Anderson continued.  “As the late
Senator Robert Kennedy said following the death of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.,
‘What we need in the United States is not division . . . not violence or lawlessness,
but love and wisdom and compassion toward one another.’ Judge Roll, a
faithful Catholic who had just attended daily Mass before stopping to greet
Rep. Giffords at her community meeting, was a dedicated public servant who
understood this very well. Let us honor his life and service by embracing
those qualities of ‘love and wisdom and compassion

Cardinal Ortega given Knights of Columbus Gaudium et Spes award

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Introducing the
2010 Gaudium et Spes recipient tonight the Supreme Chaplain, Bishop William Lori,
quoted the opening words of the Vatican II document by the same name reminding us that: “The joys and the hopes, the griefs and the anxieties of the men of this
age, especially those who are poor or in any way afflicted, these are the joys
and hopes, the griefs and anxieties of the followers of Christ” (Gaudium
et spes, 1).

Lori continued by saying that faith is more cherished when
challenged which has been particularly true for the people of Cuba and
certainly for the honoree tonight, Jaime Lucas Cardinal Ortega y Alamino, 73,
Archbishop of San Cristobal de la Habana.

Steadfast in his witness to Jesus
Christ with apostolic zeal and courage, Cardinal Jaime Ortega was ordained priest in 1964 (he celebrated his 46th anniversary on August 2); he’s been a bishop for 31 years
and a cardinal for 15. In 1998, Cardinal Ortega welcomed Pope John Paul II to
Cuba which paved the way for warmer relations between the Church, Cuba and the
world. Himself imprisoned for his Catholic faith he’s been an outspoken
advocate for the oppressed and poor. In November, Cardinal Ortega will open new
the San Carlos y San Ambrosio National Seminary to train men for the priesthood
in Cuba. Jaime Lucas Cardinal Ortega y Alamino is the 8th recipient of the
Knights of Columbus Gaudium et Spes Award.

This award was established by the Knights in 1992 to recognize those people who made outstanding contributions to both the Church and to society. The award is a gold medal with an honorarium of $100,000. The intellectual and spiritual orientation of this award is based on the belief that Christians and all people of good will ought to be united, that is, to live in solidarity with all of humanity with its joys and trials. The hope of the Church for all of her children to live a life of total self-giving for Christ and our sister and brother. All of life, as the Vatican II Council Fathers exhorted, ought to “be aroused to a lively hope –the gift of the Holy Spirit– that some day at last they will be caught up in peace and utter happiness in that fatherland radiant with the glory of the Lord” (GS, 93).

The citation is here and Cardinal Ortega’s address can be read here.

Past Gaudium et Spes recipients:

  • Mother Teresa of Calcutta, 1992
  • John Cardinal O’Connor, 1994
  • James Cardinal Hickey, 2000
  • William Cardinal Baum, 2001
  • Patriarch Michel Sabbah, 2002
  • Jean Vanier, 2005
  • Tarcisio Cardinal Bertone, SDB, 2007

Knights of Columbus works with others due to faith in Christ


Taking Pope John
Paul II’s various exhortations throughout his pontificate (and that of the
teaching of Pope Benedict) the Knights of Columbus takes seriously the
exercising the ministry of charity as part of an overall method in bringing the
Kingdom of God. Making Christ known through works of charity, the Knights of
Columbus anchor their mission in the words of the Second Vatican Council where
the Council Fathers stated:

the laity, by their very vocation, seek the kingdom of God
by engaging in temporal affairs and by ordering them according to the plan of
God. They live in the world, that is, in each and in all of the secular
professions and occupations. They live in the ordinary circumstances of family
and social life, from which the very web of their existence is woven. They are
called there by God that by exercising their proper function and led by the
spirit of the Gospel they may work for the sanctification of the world from
within as a leaven. In this way they may make Christ known to others,
especially by the testimony of a life resplendent in faith, hope and charity.
Therefore, since they are tightly bound up in all types of temporal affairs it
is their special task to order and to throw light upon these affairs in such a
way that they may come into being and then continually increase according to
Christ to the praise of the Creator and the Redeemer” (Lumen gentium, 31).

of the ways in 2009 in which the laity cared for the temporal affairs of society through the
work of the KofC whose principles are charity, unity and fraternity:

  • $151 million in charitable giving
  • the promise of giving all Haitian
    children needing prosthetic limbs as a result of the earthquake, about a 700 to 800 children in need
  • 69 million in
    volunteer hours
  • $17 million for youth programs
  • Support of Project Rachel initiatives
  • $1.6 million coupled with local and state councils to purchase 53 ultrasound machines
  • $1.6 million to Pope Benedict
    for his charitable work
  • $4.3 million given through the McGiveny Scholarship support
    of vocations since 1992
  • $887,000 given over 13 years through the Dailey
  • RSVP gave $2.8 million in 2009 and in 28 years it gave $47 million
    to seminarians
  • various church loan programs
  • Villa Maria Guadalupe, a retreat house owned by the Knights and administered by the Sisters of Life in Stamford, CT
  • collaboration in purchasing a handicap bus for VA patients without legs in order to get out of the hospital
  • various faith-based and evangelization programs in the US, Mexico, Canada and the Philippines

MOST notable are the four Knights
who died in the past year in Iraq and Afghanistan, giving their life for the

What unites the KofC is faith Christ and we are our brother’s keeper.

Vivat Jesus!

About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement, and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]
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