Tag Archives: Knights of Columbus

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

JP and Ortega.jpg

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!

New Catholic high school named for McGivney

McGivney Catholic High School.jpgMy friend Robin in Glen Carbon, IL, let me know about a fund raising opportunity for a new Catholic high school, Fr McGivney Catholic High School.

To my surprise, a new school is named for the Venerable Servant of God Michael J. McGivney, the priest who founded the Knights of Columbus here in New Haven.
May the Venerable Servant of God Michael J. McGivney intercede for this crucial endeavor.

Pius XII’s previously unpublished letter to FDR

The Zenit.org news agency gave its readers a previously
unpublished letter sent by Pope Pius XII to President Franklin Delano Roosevelt
on Aug. 30, 1943, after the Allied Forces bombed Rome. The letter surfaced from the archives of the Knights of Columbus given that it has worked in Rome since 1920. The KofC has recently opened a retrospective exhibit of its work for the Church and humanity in Rome. An unexpected gifts. Why? Because the letter to Roosevelt shows that Pope Pius did advocate for the needs of the defenseless in a dark period of history and that neither Italy nor the Church were free to freely act. Also, the exhibit shows the kind solicitude the KofC has had and continues to have for the work of Christ and the Church.

Your Excellency,

events have naturally focused the world’s attention for the moment on Italy, and
much has been said and written on what policy she would or should now follow
for her own best interests. Too many, we fear, take for granted that she is
entirely free to follow the policy of her choice; and we have wished to express
to Your Excellency our conviction that this is far from true. Of her desire for
peace and to be done with the war, there can be no doubt; but in the presence
of formidable forces opposing the actuation or even the official declaration of
that desire she finds herself shackled and quite without the necessary means of
defending herself.

If under such circumstances Italy is to be forced still to
bear devastating blows against which she is practically defenseless, we hope
and pray that the military leader will find it possible to spare innocent civil
populations and in particular churches and religious institutions the ravages
of war. Already, we must recount with deep sorrow and regret, these figure very
prominently among the ruins of Italy’s most populous and important cities.

the message of assurance addressed to us by Your Excellency sustains our hope,
even in the face of bitter experience, that God’s temples and the homes erected
by Christian charity for the poor and sick and abandoned members of Christ’s
flock may survive the terrible onslaught. May God in His merciful pity and love
hearken to the universal cry of his children and let them hear once more the
voice of Christ say: Peace!

We are happy of this occasion to renew the
expression of our sincere good wishes to Your Excellency.

From the Vatican,
August 30, 1943


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]yahoo.com.
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