Columbia January 2021

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Begin the new year on a new path.


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Columbia JANUARY 2021





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Building a better world The Order has long stood at the forefront of the movement to protect human life — and that legacy continues.

By Supreme Knight Carl A. Anderson

ABOVE: Adoration of the Magi (1655-1660) by Bartolomé Esteban Murillo/Toledo Museum of Art/Google Cultural Institute — ON THE COVER: Photo by Spirit Juice Studios

The Magi, also known as the “Wise Men” or “Kings,” are depicted adoring the Christ Child in a painting by Bartolomé Esteban Murillo (1617-1682).


‘Together Strong’


Hope After Loss

An interview with Jeanne Mancini, president of the March for Life, about the unity, growth and challenges of the pro-life cause. The Church and loved ones can support grieving parents following miscarriage, stillbirth or infant loss. By Laura and Franco Fanucci


4 Learning the faith, living the faith The past year has reminded us that death is close, but Christ is closer for those who hope in him. By Supreme Chaplain Archbishop William E. Lori

PLUS: Catholic Man of the Month

6 Knights of Columbus News Midyear Meeting Emphasizes Significance of Founder’s Beatification • Baltimore Seminary Begins ‘McGivney Series’ • Order Observes Native American Heritage Month • Knights Deliver Charity and Cheer • K of C Everyday Heroes Receives Emmy 26 Knights in Action Reports from councils and assemblies, representing the four pillars of the Faith in Action program model

The Great Struggle of Our Age

As we work for human rights and the defense of the most vulnerable, the right to life of the unborn is the defining issue of our time.


A young man holds a K of C pro-life sign while walking toward the U.S. Capitol and Supreme Court building during the 2020 March for Life in Washington, D.C.

By Supreme Knight Carl A. Anderson


There Is Always Hope

A father recalls the reaction of doctors to his son’s fatal diagnosis and miraculous healing. By Daniel Schachle


Journey of Faith

Life Will Be Victorious

Membership in the Knights of Columbus is open to men 18 years of age or older who are practical (that is, practicing) Catholics in union with the Holy See. This means that an applicant or member accepts the teaching authority of the Catholic Church on matters of faith and morals, aspires to live in accord with the precepts of the Catholic Church, and is in good standing in the Catholic Church.

By Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann

Copyright © 2021 All rights reserved

A K of C family helps a young mother to choose life, return to God and find love. By Jay Nies


In the face of profound moral confusion, we must restore a respect for life through education and loving service.


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The Hidden Pandemic


THE YEAR 2020 has left much suffering in

PUBLISHER Knights of Columbus

its wake. In addition to deaths caused by COVID-19, the economic and social stresses of the pandemic have contributed to a significant increase in the mortality rate for diabetes, high blood pressure and other conditions. By mid-December, more than 300,000 deaths were directly attributed to COVID-19 in the United States alone — making it the third leading cause of death, after heart disease and cancer, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. A New York Times editorial put the number in perspective: “Three hundred thousand is more than the number of Americans who died fighting in World War II. It is roughly half the number of total cancer deaths expected this year. It is the population of Pittsburgh.” Truly, the public health threat of the pandemic should not be taken lightly. At the same time, neither should we underestimate the extent of another public health crisis — a pandemic, of sorts — almost completely ignored by both the CDC and the media. Every year, the leading cause of death in the United States — and throughout the world — is not heart disease, cancer or any other illness. It is abortion. Since the 1973 Supreme Court decisions Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton, the lives of more than 60 million preborn children have been ended by abortion in the United States. Sixty million is more than the number of Americans who are over age 65. It is roughly half the total number of people worldwide who died in all the wars of the 20th century. It is over one and a half times the population of Canada, where there has been a similar lack of restriction, and similar rate, of abortion for

more than five decades. Virtually an entire generation of innocent children has been lost in the name of “choice.” This is why, each January, the Knights of Columbus solemnly observes the anniversary of Roe v. Wade and reaffirms our commitment to promote and defend the dignity of every human life. There are, no doubt, many threats to human life and dignity that deserve our attention. However, the issue of abortion is unique in both kind and scope. The U.S. bishops, in an introductory letter to their document Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship: A Call to Political Responsibility, put it this way: “The threat of abortion remains our preeminent priority because it directly attacks life itself, because it takes place within the sanctuary of the family, and because of the number of lives destroyed.” It is sometimes claimed that those who put special emphasis on the pro-life cause care about the unborn, but care little about other vulnerable populations. Yet, this claim ignores all that the pro-life community does for expectant mothers, young mothers and post-abortive women in need of hope, help and healing. It also ignores the countless ways that an organization like the Knights of Columbus, with charity as our first principle, puts faith into action by serving our neighbors in need. Most of all, it ignores the reality that abortion is a grave violation of human rights — of pandemic proportions. Indeed, it is our grave responsibility to pray and advocate for an end to this evil, and to build up an authentic culture of life. B Alton J. Pelowski, Editor

Faith in Action Program: Novena for Life The Knights of Columbus is firmly committed to defending the right to life of every human being — from the moment of conception to natural death. Councils are urged to participate in the Faith in Action Novena for Life program to promote a culture of life in our homes, parishes and communities. Consider incorporating it as part of the council’s participation in a 40 Days for Life campaign, the U.S. bishops’ 9 Days for Life Novena Jan. 21-29, or the Knights of Columbus Day of the Unborn Child on March 25. For more information, prayer cards and other resources, visit 2

SUPREME OFFICERS Carl A. Anderson Supreme Knight Most Rev. William E. Lori, S.T.D. Supreme Chaplain Patrick E. Kelly Deputy Supreme Knight Michael J. O’Connor Supreme Secretary Ronald F. Schwarz Supreme Treasurer John A. Marrella Supreme Advocate EDITORIAL Alton J. Pelowski Editor Andrew J. Matt Managing Editor Cecilia Hadley Senior Editor Margaret B. Kelly Associate Editor

Blessed Michael McGivney (1852-90) – Apostle to the Young, Protector of Christian Family Life and Founder of the Knights of Columbus, Intercede for Us. HOW TO REACH US COLUMBIA 1 Columbus Plaza New Haven, CT 06510-3326 Address changes 203-752-4210, option #3 Columbia inquiries 203-752-4398 K of C Customer Service 1-800-380-9995


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Our Pro-Life Commitment The Order has long stood at the forefront of the movement to protect human life — and that legacy continues By Supreme Knight Carl A. Anderson

I TAKE THIS OCCASION to recount how, for the past five decades, the Knights of Columbus has been a leader in the pro-life movement. In 1974, Knights helped organize the first March for Life in Washington, D.C. The next year, we provided $50,000 to the U.S. bishops to support their pastoral pro-life efforts. We continue our partnership with both the March for Life and the bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities to this day. In 1976, Supreme Knight John McDevitt said that “killing innocent human life is so monumental an injustice” that we must not be “lulled into acceptance of this evil,” and instead must work to reverse the Supreme Court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade decision. The Knights of Columbus has consistently called for that “exercise in raw judicial power” to be overturned, and we have supported both the Hyde Amendment to limit tax dollars to pay for abortion and the Mexico City Policy to stop promoting abortion in U.S. foreign aid programs. For many decades, we have had a threepart strategy to defend unborn children: mobilize nationwide support through the annual March for Life; support the pastoral ministry of our bishops; and work to restore legal protection to unborn children in our courts and legislatures. More recently, we added several initiatives essential to building a culture of life. The first began with the Sisters of Life. In 1998, their founder, John Cardinal O’Connor, hoped that one day the sisters would have a retreat center that would be “a place of peace, a place of tranquility, a place of light and refreshment, a place of love.” That dream became reality in 2004 when the Knights of Columbus established Villa Maria Guadalupe in Stamford, Conn. The center, operated by the Sisters of Life, is a source of healing for many, including women experiencing the aftermath of abortion. Thousands of lives have been changed and many saved

by the Sisters of Life, who help courageous women choose life despite all odds. Second, in 2008, we began an annual national survey on abortion with the Marist Poll to understand public attitudes on abortion and help shape the national debate. In a series of groundbreaking findings, our polling showed that, among other things, 3 out of 4 Americans — including 6 out of 10 of those who describe themselves as “pro-choice” — want significant restrictions on abortion. The conclusion: The unlimited abortion mandate of Roe v. Wade is not supported by the majority of Americans. Then, in 2009, we began our Ultrasound Initiative to place new ultrasound machines in pregnancy resource centers. We have since placed more than 1,300 ultrasound machines worth over $60 million. Through this program, we have helped save hundreds of thousands of unborn children. Our program is building the culture of life one heart and one child at a time. The defense of the unborn is a preeminent priority for the Knights of Columbus because abortion is the killing of innocent children on a massive scale. Roe v. Wade will ultimately fail because it is based on the falsehood that we do not know that the child before birth is a human being. And because it is false, we have worked to overturn it; to mobilize national protests against it; to educate the public about it; to help women heal who have been hurt by it; to help keep more women from being hurt; and to rescue unborn children from its deadly consequences. Pope Francis writes that the “defense of the innocent unborn needs to be clear, firm and passionate, for at stake is the dignity of a human life, which is always sacred” (Gaudete et Exsultate, 101). Encouraged by his words, we will continue to build a culture of life in all the nations where we are active. Vivat Jesus!

‘The defense of the unborn is a preeminent priority for the Knights of Columbus because abortion is the killing of innocent children on a massive scale.’


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The Edge of Light The past year has reminded us that death is close, but Christ is closer for those who hope in him By Supreme Chaplain Archbishop William E. Lori

DECADES AGO, there was a long-running TV soap opera titled “The Edge of Night.” Set in a city called Monticello, it featured a lawyer named Mike Karr. He and his colleagues solved crimes and exposed conspiracies that affected the lives of many citizens, among them the wealthy and the prominent. While Karr and his associates usually prevailed, the premise of this popular show turned on the idea that most people live on the threshold of death and disaster. As the year 2020 passes into the history books, we too may feel that way. Only a year ago, it was hard to imagine the havoc and suffering that a pandemic would wreak on the world. Little did we imagine how it would radically alter how we live and work; it has made us keenly aware of the fragility of our existence. During this past year, I spoke with many people who lost loved ones or who were caring for seriously ill family members. A grieving mother put it this way: “I thought our lives were secure. Now I know that death is closer than I ever thought.” While we hope and pray that the coronavirus will ease its grip in this new year, we should not lose sight of difficult lessons that 2020 taught us. First, it is easy for us to harbor a false sense of security. For example, we may readily assume that our families will remain in good health, only to face a sudden health crisis. We may count on the support of a lifelong acquaintance, only to suffer betrayal. Just when we think there is smooth sailing ahead, we may find ourselves mired in a controversy not of our making. In these and other ways, life can change, and not for the better. Second, while we should avoid a false sense of security, we should also avoid giving in to discouragement or despair. The opposite of discouragement is not frivolity, and the opposite of despair is not optimism. No, the opposite of discouragement is courage and


the opposite of despair is hope — hope in the promise of eternal life offered us only in Christ, hope that the light and love of Christ will ultimately prevail over the darkness of sin and death. Truly, we do not lead our lives on the edge of night, but on the edge of light. One of the most luminous moments of 2020 was the beatification of Blessed Michael McGivney, a holy parish priest and the visionary founder of the Knights of Columbus. For most of his life, Father McGivney suffered from precarious health. One senses that the reality of death was never far from his mind and heart. His pastor at St. Mary’s Church in New Haven, Conn., was in poor health and died at age 33, less than two years after Father McGivney arrived. A number of Father McGivney’s priestly colleagues also died at an early age; indeed, in those days most priests did not live to age 50. But this did not stop Father McGivney from giving himself completely to the Lord, to his parishioners, and to his beloved Knights. On the contrary, the nearness of death gave to Father McGivney’s ministry a sense of urgency, infusing his priestly ministry with the light and love of Christ. Conscious of his mortality, Father McGivney placed his whole life in the presence of the light of Christ. His parishioners perceived this about him, for even while he was among them, they spoke of his sanctity, his purity and his charity. In many parts of the world, January is one of the darkest and coldest months of the year. Gradually, however, the days grow longer and warmer as spring approaches. This natural phenomenon is a good symbol for our spiritual lives. Instead of clinging to flickering artificial lights or giving in to darkness, let us resolve in this new year to live unabashedly in the light of Christ, as we look forward to that day when we shall see him face to face. B

‘The nearness of death gave to Father McGivney’s ministry a sense of urgency, infusing his priestly ministry with the light and love of Christ.’


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Supreme Chaplain’s Challenge

Catholic Man of the Month

A monthly reflection and practical challenge from Supreme Chaplain Archbishop William E. Lori

FATHER TANSI was not one for half measures: “If you are going to be a Christian at all,” the Nigerian priest used to say, “you might as well live entirely for God.” That is just what he did, first in the bustle of parish life and later in the quiet cloisters of a monastery. Iwene Tansi was born to Igbo farmers near the southern Nigerian town of Aguleri in 1903. His parents, though not Christian, sent him to a Catholic school, where he was baptized Michael in 1913. Despite opposition from his family, he entered the seminary at age 22 and was ordained for the Diocese of Onitsha in 1937. As a pastor, Father Tansi was constantly on the move, traveling by foot or bicycle to bring Christ to scattered villages. Known for his powerful preaching, his reverence for the Eucharist and his gentleness and good humor, he ministered to numerous young people preparing for marriage or discerning religious vocations. One young boy inspired by Father Tansi’s example was Francis Arinze, who later became

They were overjoyed at seeing the star, and on entering the house they saw the child with Mary his mother. They prostrated themselves and did him homage. Then they opened their treasures and offered him gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh. (Gospel for Jan. 3, Mt 2:10-11)

FROM TOP: Courtesy of Mount St. Bernard Abbey — Photo by Matthew Barrick — CNS photo/Vincenzo Pinto, Reuters pool

It’s quite a magnificent scene: Intellectuals from a faraway land, not even of the Jewish faith, travel to pay homage to the newborn king. Their gifts acknowledge the child’s kingship and foreshadow the sacrifice he was to make. They are also a sign of what a gift this newborn king is to the entire world. We must also recognize every child as a gift to the world, created in the image of God himself. May we recommit ourselves with renewed vigor to protect and cherish the life and dignity of every human person.

Challenge: I challenge you to take a concrete, tangible action to support the cause for life in your community, by donating money or supplies to a pregnancy resource center, praying outside an abortion facility or joining your parish’s pro-life group. Second, I challenge you to participate with your brother Knights in the Faith in Action Novena for Life program or, if possible, the March for Life program.

Blessed Cyprian Michael Iwene Tansi (1903-1964)

Liturgical Calendar Jan. 1 Solemnity of Mary, the Holy Mother of God Jan. 2 Sts. Basil the Great and Gregory Nazianzen Jan. 3 The Epiphany of the Lord Jan. 4 St. Elizabeth Ann Seton (USA) Jan. 5 St. John Neumann (USA) Jan. 7 St. André Bessette (Canada; Jan. 6 in USA) Jan. 10 The Baptism of the Lord Jan. 21 St. Agnes Jan. 22 Day of Prayer for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children (USA) Jan. 25 The Conversion of St. Paul the Apostle Jan. 26 Sts. Timothy and Titus Jan. 28 St. Thomas Aquinas

a cardinal and said, “His personal life witness was the best argument.” Though already rooted in deep prayer, Father Tansi began to feel called to greater contemplation. In 1950, he entered Mount St. Bernard Abbey, a Cistercian monastery in England, and took the name Cyprian. The transition from pastor to monk, as well as the change in climate, was difficult at times, but his trust in God’s will was firm. He had once advised a young married couple, “All his plans are for the good of his children.” Father Cyprian died at age 61 on Jan. 20, 1964. Beatified by St. John Paul II in Onitsha in 1998, he is the first African priest in modern times to be declared Blessed. B

Holy Father’s Monthly Prayer Intention

May the Lord give us the grace to live in full fellowship with our brothers and sisters of other religions, praying for one another, open to all. JANUARY 2021 B C O L U M B I A

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KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS leaders representing jurisdictions throughout the world convened virtually Nov. 19-21 for the 2020 Midyear Organizational Meeting of State Deputies. Just weeks after the beatification of Father Michael J. McGivney, the state deputies were encouraged to look to the Order’s founder for inspiration as they serve families, councils, parishes and communities amid difficult times. “I believe that the beatification of Father McGivney this year is a providential sign, given at this time in history for the good of the Church and society,” Supreme Knight Carl Anderson said in his keynote address Nov. 19. In the face of challenges such as the coronavirus pandemic, the clergy abuse crisis and declining religious practice, Knights must imitate Father McGivney’s fraternal charity and missionary zeal, the supreme knight said. Supreme Chaplain Archbishop William Lori of Baltimore likewise discussed the call to follow in the K of C founder’s footsteps. “Blessed Michael McGivney calls you and me, in the actual circumstances of our lives, to embody, to exemplify, to live the principles of charity, unity and fraternity,” Archbishop Lori said. “Our principles are not abstract, but are personified in our founder, and thus they must be personified in us and in our brother Knights.” The meeting also underscored Father McGivney’s universal vision and the call to expand the Order’s charitable reach. Speakers addressed the partnership between fraternal leaders and the insurance force in order to drive membership growth, and state deputies watched the new documentary A Witness for the World: The Global Impact of Blessed Michael McGivney. 6

Workshops focused on topics such as improving council meetings, supporting pastors and using digital tools to engage members in the Faith in Action programs. In his closing remarks Nov. 21, Supreme Knight Anderson further encouraged Knights to study the life of their founder by reading Father McGivney’s biography, Parish Priest, and by watching recent documentaries about his life and ministry. The supreme knight also called on Knights to grow closer to the Order’s founder through the new novena and litany (featured in the December 2020 issue of Columbia). “The gift of Father McGivney’s beatification presents to us a great responsibility — the responsibility to be faithful and productive stewards of his legacy,” Supreme Knight Anderson said. “We must leave no neighbor behind in our charity. And we must leave no Catholic man behind, when it comes to the opportunity of membership in Blessed Michael McGivney’s Knights of Columbus.” B

Baltimore Seminary Begins ‘McGivney Series’ ST. MARY’S SEMINARY and University in Baltimore launched a lecture series about the priesthood in honor of its recently beatified graduate, Blessed Michael McGivney. The new McGivney Series began Nov. 12 with a virtual discussion about the priest and his times featuring Supreme Knight Carl Anderson, Supreme Chaplain Archbishop William Lori and Sulpician Father Phillip Brown, president-rector of the seminary. The series will explore the essential qualifications and qualities of effective priestly ministry in the 21st century, taking Blessed Michael McGivney as a model. McGivney graduated from St. Mary’s in 1877, but his pastoral example of “simple, dedicated, sacrificial work” is timeless, Supreme Knight Anderson said Two more discussions, titled “Practically Catholic” and “Saints Among Us — Heroic Christians or Relentless Disciples” are currently planned for this academic year. For more information, visit B

A bronze bust at St. Mary’s Seminary and University in Baltimore commemorates Blessed Michael McGivney, who studied there from 1873-1877.

ABOVE: Photo by Mike Ross — BOTTOM RIGHT: Knights of Columbus Multimedia Archive

Midyear Meeting Emphasizes Significance of Founder’s Beatification


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Order Observes Native American Heritage Month

A member of Cuyuna Council 3473 in Deerwood, Minn., assists a student during a Knights of Columbus Coats for Kids event at the Minisinaakwaang Leadership Academy, which primarily serves Ojibwe Native Americans.

ABOVE LEFT: Photo by David Ellis — ABOVE RIGHT: Photo by Mike Ross — LOWER RIGHT: Courtesy of John and Maria Castillo

K OF C COUNCILS were encouraged

to observe Native American Heritage Month in November by taking action to assist Indigenous communities. Supreme Director Patrick Mason, a member of the Osage Nation, noted that poverty levels on many reservations are high — and made worse by the COVID-19 pandemic, which has hit native communities particularly hard. “A lot of them don’t have coats or enough food for their families, or even access to fresh water,” Mason said. “It’s hard for people to imagine the difficult conditions that some of these tribes face.” It is also important, Mason added, to go beyond material charity and build concrete relationships of fraternity and unity. “Take the time to get to know your native brothers and to work with them in bringing hope to the many native peoples who feel lost, ” he said. “And take the time to appreciate the beauty of native cultures and the depth of their Catholic faith.” B

Knights Deliver Charity and Cheer THE PANDEMIC has made some holi-

day traditions more challenging, but it has also made others — including the Knights of Columbus Coats for Kids and Food for Families initiatives — even more important. For the ninth year in a row, Knights in Connecticut held a Coats for Kids event on the day after Thanksgiving, giving away 2,400 winter garments at sites across the state Nov. 27. Councils in the District of Columbia and Idaho held similar Black Friday coat distributions, aiding hundreds of families. Another Thanksgiving tradition for the past six years has been the “Day of Joy” in New Haven, organized by a local church with financial and volunteer support from the Supreme Council. Families in need were welcomed outside the K of C headquarters Nov. 21 to receive a Thanksgiving food basket, as well as coats and sneakers for their children. Responding to growing food insecurity in its home state, the Supreme Council also donated $25,000 to the Connecticut Food Bank just before Thanksgiving. “This donation is perfectly timed,” said Daniel Gomez, the food bank’s chief operating officer. “It will go to work putting food on the tables of

Volunteers carry and sort food outside the Knights of Columbus headquarters in New Haven Nov. 21.

households across our area in the challenging weeks and months ahead.” The Supreme Council has contributed more than $1.5 million to food banks since Leave No Neighbor Behind launched in April 2020. Local councils have donated more than $700,000 and more than 330 tons of food. “As our nation faces tough economic times due to the pandemic, the Knights of Columbus remains steadfast in our commitment to helping the most vulnerable members of our society,” said Supreme Knight Carl Anderson. B

K of C Everyday Heroes Receives Emmy AN EPISODE from the

second season of the Knights of Columbus Everyday Heroes documentary series was recognized at the 62nd annual Chicago/Midwest Emmy Awards Nov. 22. “No Greater Love,” which told the story of Kendrick Castillo, received the award for “Outstanding Achievement for Magazine Programming — Segment.”

Kendrick was killed after heroically charging a shooter at his high school in Colorado to save his classmates in May 2019. He was posthumously named a Knight (his father, John, is also a member) and received the Caritas Award at the 137th Supreme Convention in Minneapolis. “No Greater Love” and all episodes of Everyday Heroes can be viewed online at B JANUARY 2021 B C O L U M B I A

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‘Together Strong’ An interview with Jeanne Mancini, president of the March for Life, about the unity, growth and challenges of the pro-life cause



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fter months of social and political unrest amid an ongoing global pandemic, the 48th annual March for Life in Washington, D.C., will take place Jan. 29 under a banner of unity and hope: “Together Strong: Life Unites.” This year’s theme underscores the fact that, for decades, the March for Life has been the largest peaceful protest for human rights in the United States. Jeanne Mancini, president of the March for Life Education and Defense Fund since 2012, has long been an eloquent and passionate advocate for the unborn and pregnant women in need. Columbia recently spoke with her about this year’s theme, the momentum of the pro-life movement, and social and political challenges in the new year. COLUMBIA: What is the significance of this year’s March for Life theme, Together Strong: Life Unites? JEANNE MANCINI: Every year, the March for Life chooses a theme that conveys a timely message. Because 2020 has been marked by such division, unrest and fear, there is a great need for us to come together and be reminded of our special mission — and our strength in truth. Though each of us brings our own individual talents to the life movement, we are far stronger together. Each one of us has a critical and irreplaceable role to play in building a culture of life. As St. Teresa of Calcutta put it, “You can do what I cannot do. I can do what you cannot do. Together we can do great things.” From choosing adoption to joyfully accepting the responsibilities of fatherhood and motherhood; from sidewalk counseling to lobbying; from prenatal care to post-abortion support; from praying for the most vulnerable to voting to protect them — everyone is desperately needed. Our unique gifts and talents, united in the service of one common mission, make us strong.

Top: Jeanne Mancini, president of the March for Life Education and Defense Fund, greets the crowd at the annual rally on the National Mall.

Photos by Jeffrey Bruno

Students from Oakcrest School, an all-girls school in northern Virginia, lead the 47th annual March for Life in Washington, D.C., past the U.S. Supreme Court building Jan. 24, 2020.

COLUMBIA: If the cause for human life should bring people together, why is the issue of abortion so divisive today? JEANNE MANCINI: The very act of abortion and its consequences are intrinsically divisive. Abortion divides a mother from her child. Reality is not arbitrary, and abortion by its very nature is a divisive, disintegrating act; it can never be unifying. The abortion industry has deceived many women into believing that pregnancy is a disease, that motherhood means giving up her dreams and that abortion is empowering. JANUARY 2021 B C O L U M B I A

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Knights from the Los Angeles area, joined by friends and family, gather for the 6th annual OneLife LA pro-life walk in January 2020. JANUARY 22 marks 48 years since the infamous Roe v. Wade U.S.

Supreme Court decision, which decriminalized abortion throughout the country. Here are five ways you can observe the anniversary and unite with others in peaceful protest, advocating for the defense of life. March in person. In addition to the March for Life in Washington, D.C., many local marches are still scheduled across the United States and beyond. Visit and click “state marches” for more details. If you plan to attend a march, be sure to check the organizers’ website for details on safety and travel restrictions and other important information. Go virtual. Online components have been added to the March for Life in Washington and many regional pro-life events. Visit or your local event’s website for updates on virtual programming opportunities. Drive for life. Organize a car caravan through your town to promote the cause of life. Ask participants to decorate their vehicles with pro-life signs and flags, and invite homeowners along the route to show support with their own signs. Pray for life. Join Catholics across the country in praying the 9 Days for Life Novena Jan. 21-29. Subscribe for a daily email reminder by visiting Participate in the livestreamed National Prayer Vigil for Life (Jan. 28-29), which will include a rosary, Holy Hour and Mass. For the complete schedule, visit Order Knights of Columbus pro-life resources. Council officers can order free pro-life signs through the K of C website. Pro-life apparel, masks, yard signs, car flags and more are also available for purchase at B


Abortion divides women from the support and love they need. Studies show that the majority of women who choose abortion do so because of a lack of support from their partner, or a lack of financial support, or for similar reasons. Instead of providing women with what they need to thrive as mothers, the abortion industry preys upon their fear and insecurity, even actively spreading misinformation about the pro-life organizations that would love to offer support. Abortion also divides a man from his fatherhood. Some abortion activists attempt to remove men from the discussion by advancing a “my body, my choice” narrative. But being a voice for the voiceless unborn is everyone’s concern. In other cases, abortion allows men to walk away from their responsibility and duty to protect and care for mother and child. Similarly, abortion divides siblings, ensuring some children will never know their sisters or brothers. It divides grandfather from grandson and grandmother from granddaughter. The abortion industry callously turns a blind eye to the devastating loss of generations that it has caused. And it even divides us from reality itself when it denies the scientific fact that human life begins at fertilization. COLUMBIA: This year’s theme of unity is also a founding principle of the Knights of Columbus. What role do you see Knights playing, both individually and collectively, in the pro-life movement today? JEANNE MANCINI: The Knights have been a vital force in the March for Life from the very start, and they continue to be its backbone in many ways. From providing the operations infrastructure (over 100 Knights volunteer as marshals at each annual march) to organizing parish and community participation, the impact of this partnership should not be underestimated. Because the Knights have such a unified spiritual and charitable mission to help the weak and vulnerable, which

Photo by Zaki Mustafa

Five Ways to Get Involved


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goes back to their founder’s deep concern for widows and orphans, they naturally desire to protect the unborn and assist pregnant women in need. Also, the fact that Knights of Columbus are so active throughout the United States obviously helps draw people to the March each year, including thousands of young people. In short, I don’t think the March would be the broad-reaching event and experience it is today without the aid of the Knights of Columbus.

Photo courtesy of Campaign Life Coalition

COLUMBIA: There has been a lot of discussion this past year about public protests. Can you speak to the fact that the March for Life is the largest peaceful protest for human rights in the United States? JEANNE MANCINI: This will be the 48th annual March for Life. We have marched every year against the human rights abuse of abortion and have always taken the peaceful approach. We have marched through blizzards, in subzero temperatures, during government shutdowns, after terrorist attacks, and we will march again this year. The underlying principle of the prolife movement is respect for the inherent dignity of the human person, and that is made obvious by the March for Life participants. Marchers are primarily young people, and have a contagious joy as they fight to protect the poorest of the poor, the most vulnerable unborn. We are marching against violence in the womb and bearing witness to love and the beautiful miracle of life. COLUMBIA: How is the COVID-19 pandemic expected to affect the march in 2021? How can people unite in support of life if they are unable to attend in person? JEANNE MANCINI: Given the pandemic landscape, we will take — and require — necessary health precautions to protect marchers, as well increase our virtual presence for friends to participate from home. Check out our website at to get specific and up-to-date information.

Canada’s Virtual March for Life ORGANIZERS of Canada’s National March for Life expect to rally in

person May 13, 2021, in Ottawa, Ontario. But they are well prepared to pivot if COVID-19 interferes. Last spring, tens of thousands of people, including Knights and their families, participated in the first-ever Virtual National March for Life, which consisted of a series of inspirational events May 10-15. The National March for Life has been organized annually since 1998 by the Campaign Life Coalition (CLC), Canada’s largest pro-life political organization, with support from the Ontario State Council. Last year’s march was scheduled for May 14 until pandemic restrictions forced a change of plans. Instead, organizers livestreamed nearly a week of programming that included screenings of pro-life films, a candlelight vigil and a memorial Mass for the late pro-life hero Basilian Father Alphonse de Valk, who died last April. The National Mass for Life, celebrated by Archbishop Terrence Prendergast of Ottawa, was livestreamed from the Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica on May 14 — the anniversary of the bill that opened the floodgates to abortion on demand in 1969. A program titled “Be Not Afraid” was then broadcast, featuring interviews with Canadian pro-life leaders such as CLC president Jeff Gunnarson, a member of Galt Council 2184 in Cambridge, Ontario. Other civil and religious leaders, including Supreme Warden Graydon Nicholas and Ontario State Deputy David Peters, delivered greetings and remarks during the Virtual Rally and March that followed. The final day of the Virtual March for Life featured a pro-life webinar that replaced the traditional youth conference. CLC vice president Matt Wojciechowski, who recently joined the Order, said, “We hope and pray that the thousands who tuned into the various events will have the courage to take what they learned and be pro-life witnesses in their schools, churches and communities.” B

Matt Wojciechowski and Josie Luetke, vice president and youth coordinator for Campaign Life Coalition, respectively, host Canada’s Virtual Rally and March for Life in May 2020. JANUARY 2021 B C O L U M B I A

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see that the pro-life cause is changing minds and hearts? JEANNE MANCINI: There are so many tangible signs of hope! The abortion rate and numbers are hitting historic lows — lower than any year since Roe v. Wade. Public opinion polls continue to reveal that most Americans believe abortion is morally wrong. And contrary to Roe’s legacy of abortion on demand, the annual Knights of Columbus/Marist Poll shows that 75% of Americans would limit abortion to, at most, the first three months of pregnancy. The number of abortion centers is decreasing and the number of pregnancy care centers is increasing. I recommend reading a wonderful report about these centers recently published by the Charlotte Lozier Institute titled A Legacy of Life and Love: Pregnancy Centers Stand the Test of Time. Despite these signs of hope, the reality remains that more than 800,000 abortions occur annually and that any abortion takes the life of one and wounds another. All of this presents a heartbreakingly daunting task; our work to build a true culture of life is cut out for us. COLUMBIA: With looming threats to

pro-life legislative measures, how can the pro-life movement respond and continue to build on the momentum it has gained in recent years? JEANNE MANCINI: It is critical to stay engaged and communicate effectively with elected officials on pro-life policies. One way that pro-life Americans can do this is through March for Life Action and our broad activist network, which makes contacting your representatives on the most important policies easy. You can sign up at It is important to support groups like the March for Life that strongly advocate for pro-life policies at all levels of government. Stay educated, run for local office, write opinion pieces. There is no lack of work or need. Finally, please remember that the most effective way to build a culture of life in a hostile environment is through the spiritual means of prayer and fasting. B 12

Native Americans Proclaim Life is Sacred

A member of the Native American pro-life group Life Is Sacred participates in the 2020 March for Life in Washington, D.C. THE KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS strengthened its partnership with the Native American pro-life organization Life is Sacred this past year, after welcoming more than 200 members of the group to Washington, D.C., for the 2020 March for Life. “Native Americans are our brothers and sisters in Christ, and they are so often forgotten by the culture at large,” Supreme Knight Carl Anderson told members of the organization following the march. “Together we march as people of faith, standing up for the rights of every human life.” After COVID-19 was declared a global pandemic, K of C councils in Arizona, New Mexico, South Dakota and Hawaii helped Life is Sacred to raise money, buy essential supplies and deliver more than 37,000 boxes of food to native and indigenous people across several reservations and communities. The Supreme Council contributed more than $40,000 to these ongoing efforts. “It is a common principle among Indigenous peoples of the Americas that humanity and personhood are not distinguished by an arbitrary barrier such as birth,” explained Supreme Director Patrick Mason, a member of the Osage Nation and one of the founders of Life is Sacred. “All life is sacred, at all points in time, and at all points in human development, from conception to natural death.” Mason, an attorney who also serves as assistant supreme secretary, further noted that the Navajo Nation Supreme Court has affirmed the sanctity of human life. In a 2010 decision, the court stated that “the child, even the unborn child, occupies a space in Navajo culture that can best be described as holy or sacred.” B

Photo by Spirit Juice Studios

COLUMBIA: What signs of hope do you


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The Church and loved ones can support grieving parents following miscarriage, stillbirth or infant loss By Laura and Franco Fanucci

The authors spend final moments with their newborn daughter Abby in 2016. Abby and her twin sister, Maggie, were born at 24 weeks and died within two days.

Photo by Jennifer Liv Photography/Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep


ow many kids do you have?” The simplest question is still the hardest. Do we give the easy answer or the honest one? Eight years ago, we lost a baby to miscarriage. Five years ago, our twin daughters died days after birth. Even though we have a busy home today, their absence has redefined our family. “We’re raising five boys” or “We have five children at home,” we often say. Both are true, yet incomplete. The truth is that we have eight children, and three of them are gone. Miscarriage, stillbirth and infant loss are more common than many realize. As many as 1 in 4 pregnancies ends in miscarriage before 20 weeks of pregnancy. Stillbirth (the death of a baby before birth, after 20 weeks of pregnancy) and infant mortality rates vary by country, but in the United States, about 24,000 babies are lost each year to stillbirth and the same number die in infancy.

Odds are that you know someone who has suffered this great loss — or you have grieved for your own child. How can we as a Church support grieving parents in their pain? SPIRITUAL CONSOLATION

The Catholic Church honors each child from the moment of conception — and also mourns with those who mourn. Scripture tells us, “God did not make death, nor does he rejoice in the destruction of the living. For he fashioned all things that they might have being” (Wis 1:13-14). Yet God sometimes permits suffering to happen, while still vowing to “destroy death forever” at the end of time (Is 25:8). The mystery of God’s will in allowing suffering and death, especially of children, is often hard to understand and accept. But parents can find comfort in God’s promise of eternal life. In the Catechism of the Catholic Church, we read: “Indeed, the great mercy JANUARY 2021 B C O L U M B I A

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of God who desires that all men should be saved, and Jesus’ tenderness toward children which caused him to say: ‘Let the children come to me, do not hinder them,’ allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism” (1261). The Church offers a “Blessing of Parents after a Miscarriage or Stillbirth,” as well as official funeral rites for infants, whether they were baptized or died before baptism. But many parents still find themselves feeling isolated or adrift after the loss of a baby. Finding support is crucial for the grieving process, even after the physical experience of loss ends. Spiritual comfort can be found in Scripture, the sacraments and saints who have mourned the death of their own children, including Sts. Zélie and Louis Martin, St. Gianna Beretta Molla and St. Paulinus of Nola. Counseling and peer support groups provide ongoing help to couples, especially in navigating relationships after loss. Families often create ways to honor the life of their child — choosing a name for their baby, remembering them on anniversaries and holidays or asking their intercession in prayer. Some parents describe feeling close to their children during Mass, when heaven and earth join together in the communion of saints, rejoicing in the Eucharist. Every parish can offer practical and pastoral support for couples and families as part of the pro-life witness of the Church — for example, praying for grieving parents in the Prayers of the Faithful and remembering their children on All Souls’ Day. Parishes can also gather local resources for newly bereaved parents (including Catholic cemeteries, counselors and financial assistance for burial costs) or hold an annual memorial Mass to remember babies who have died, whether recently or years ago. Such liturgies can be especially powerful for parents who were not able to bury their children. KEYS TO COMPASSION

Loved ones often want to reassure parents that “God has a plan” and “You can try again.” But well-meaning encouragement falls short in the face of devastating grief. Instead, friends and relatives can offer concrete support — like dropping off a meal or helping with household chores — and continued prayer, such as remembering their child on the anniversary of their loss. Often the simplest statements of care mean the most: “I love you. I’m here for you. You and your baby won’t be forgotten.” Sitting with parents in their grief and listening to their story is a powerful act of compassion, offering comfort without trying to fix their pain or minimize their loss. Many couples do conceive again. But pregnancy after loss can bring anxiety, as both mother and father face their greatest fears. The spiritual challenges of pregnancy and parenting after loss are real, and couples need the compassionate care of loved ones and health care providers. Not all couples go on to have living children. They may face recurrent loss or secondary infertility, discern not to conceive again, or choose parenthood through fostering or 14

adoption. Each situation deserves sensitivity and prayerful support — an opportunity for the Church to bear witness to Christian hope and minister to those in need. While we have welcomed more children after miscarriage and infant loss, grief remains a part of our family’s story. As a couple, we have found new callings born of grief, but we still hold the wound of sorrow within our hearts. Ministering to others who have experienced loss has taught us how the Christian community is called to grow in compassion toward those who mourn. Whenever we draw


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Franco and Laura Fanucci are pictured with their sons outside their home in St. Michael, Minn.

A Mother’s Perspective

Losing our baby to miscarriage was a complete shock. I felt helpless, guilty, angry at God and overwhelmed with questions of “Why did this happen to us?” Only after our baby died did I hear story after story from friends and family who had experienced miscarriage, too. What helped my grief were loved ones who were willing to sit with me in my pain and not try to fix it — the faithful few who acknowledged our baby’s life, prayed for us and remembered our child on the anniversary of our loss. The deaths of our twins, after pregnancy complications and their premature birth, was even harder. To hold your children as they die in your arms is a deep trauma. We were grateful for help from counseling and support groups as we grappled with our grief and tried to help our living children cope with theirs. Losing a baby is no small grief. It cannot be brushed aside with cheery hopes of “You can try again!” The physical, mental and spiritual suffering is real and devastating. God has been present to us in our pain, but it has been a long journey to find hope and healing again. — Laura Fanucci

A Father’s Perspective

Photo by David Ellis

close to Christ in suffering, we can learn how God works to raise us from death to new life. B LAURA AND FRANCO FANUCCI live with their five sons in St. Michael, Minn. Laura is an award-winning columnist for Catholic News Service, and Franco is a mechanical engineer and a member of St. Joseph the Worker Council 13359 in Maple Grove. They are co-authors of Grieving Together: A Couple’s Journey Through Miscarriage (Our Sunday Visitor, 2018).

As a husband and father, our miscarriage was bewildering. I’ve always wanted to care for and protect my family, but through miscarriage and infant loss, I felt powerless. I didn’t have the same physical experience of loss as my wife, but the grief was still huge. I could only be present to Laura and our children and grieve with them. The memory of telling my parents we were having a miscarriage has never left me. I hadn’t yet shared that Laura was pregnant, so they didn’t know we were expecting until I called to tell them of our loss. Going forward, I promised myself I’d never wait to share the joy of a pregnancy with those I love. The deaths of our twins brought even more intense anger, sadness, denial, fear and doubt in unexpected moments. I found it hard to pray but took comfort in the community of the Church that honored the lives of our children. I came to understand that we grieved deeply because we loved deeply — and that our grief could never be greater than our love. Holding onto that hope helped me to keep going on the hardest days. — Franco Fanucci JANUARY 2021 B C O L U M B I A

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As we work for human rights and the defense of the most vulnerable, the right to life of the unborn is the defining issue of our time By Supreme Knight Carl A. Anderson

Editor’s Note: These Liberties We Hold Sacred, a collection of speeches and essays by the supreme knight on the confluence of faith and public life, will be published later this month. The following text introduces five pieces related to building a culture of life.


ach age has its great debate, its great struggle on behalf of the key rights of society’s most forgotten or helpless individuals. An important measure of decency and goodness of any society is its respect for the life and dignity of the people within it. Historically, as today, the marginalized have seen their lives valued less than the lives of others. Societies that practiced human sacrifice or slavery certainly provide public and jarring examples of such abuses of the right to life and dignity of other people, but in our own society, too, very real abuses exist. Today, such abuses generally happen in the shadows. The elderly and sick are offered assisted suicide; the unborn are seen as disposable, and a million people each year are thus never born. The rights of other groups, including the poor, immigrants, minorities and people of faith, are at times abused as well — whether by governments or individuals. 16

In the late 20th century, and into the 21st, no issue has been more important in the United States than abortion. The reasons for this are twofold. First, abortion is the leading cause of death in the United States, leaving heart disease a distant second. Second, abortion is the issue of the day in which an entire class of people have been denied their humanity — completely. The very personhood of the unborn is denied, and the consequence in the United States alone has been 50 million deaths. America is a country that has shown great persistence, openness and eventual ability to struggle for the oppressed and marginalized. For example, so strong was the conviction toward justice that the country fought a civil war in no small part to free black men and women enslaved and considered by some to be less than human. A century later, the country underwent a further purification through the rightly celebrated civil rights movement that made great strides in overcoming legal segregation and rampant racism. In recent decades, it has been heartening to be part of America’s continued passion for justice in the fight against abortion — a fight which, like the fight against slavery in years past, occurs on

Photo courtesy of OneLife LA

The Great Struggle of Our Age

Supreme Knight Carl Anderson and his wife, Dorian, walk with Mother Agnes Mary Donovan of the Sisters of Life and Archbishop José Gomez of Los Angeles, now president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, during the inaugural OneLife LA event in January 2015.


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a battlefield in which bad law provides aircover to the side of injustice. It has been heartening, too, to be a part of the growing majority who see the issue for what it is. Indeed, though some pundits and politicians want to tell us that the issue is “settled law,” the hundreds of thousands who annually march for life prove otherwise. What the Supreme Court imposed cannot be settled law because a law that denies life and human dignity is simply not a sustainable law. Considering the magnitude of the lives lost in this dehumanization of the unborn, it remains one of the most politically charged topics in our country’s political debates today. For the Knights of Columbus, commitment to those on the margins runs deep — from the widows and orphans of Irish immigrants in 19th-century New England to those persecuted for their faith in Mexico, the Middle East, and by Nazi and Communist regimes. With such a record, it is not surprising that the Knights of Columbus was early in its vocal defense of the rights of the unborn. As abortion began to gain legal recognition in the country, the organization’s members and leaders directed passionate rhetoric and substantial financial resources to defend the unborn from falling victim to legalized abortion, which was considered a serious backsliding in terms of their human rights. Not only my predecessor (Virgil Dechant) but my predecessor’s predecessor ( John McDevitt) were outspoken champions of life from the early 1970s onward. And that commitment to the life and dignity of every person, born and unborn, by the Knights of Columbus has continued unabated. Today, the Knights of Columbus continues its work on behalf of the unborn and their families. In addition to providing practical support for pregnant women and families, the Order has shaped hearts and the debate on abortion in impactful ways. Most notably, thousands of pregnant women have been given the chance to see for themselves the life within them, through the more than 1,300 ultrasound machines donated by the Knights to pregnancy resource centers around the country. Our surveys,

in partnership with the Marist Poll, have helped redefine the debate over abortion by exposing and highlighting the vast consensus that exists in favor of substantial restrictions on abortion — a fact too often neglected before our polling effort highlighted it. Despite the consensus, during the past decade, the Obama administration and various state governments have sought to coerce religious organizations into cooperating with this evil. Not surprisingly, we and other Catholic and non-Catholic faith-based organizations resisted these attempts. Courts would ultimately vindicate the rights of people of faith, but the legal and legislative battles themselves showed that what starts with denying the rights of one group (the unborn) swiftly spreads to denying the rights of other groups (like those who believe the unborn have rights). At the end of the day, abortion in the United States today is the defining issue in terms of how we deal with the most vulnerable. With abortion persistently promulgated as a right, a freedom and a “fix” for ending the life of one in favor of the ease of life of another, the abortion issue has defined and in many cases become the common battleground for other issues, including conscience and the dignity of even those who suffer. These issues might be challenged and defined in other areas, but are, in the United States, deeply conditioned either explicitly by abortion or implicitly by trends making abortion a legal reality. Abortion’s toll — both in terms of lost lives and lost values — means it is not enough to say that we are for the threatened, the marginalized or the “little guy,” if that claim excludes the most threatened, the most marginalized, and the smallest of all. It has often been said that “eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.” If we would protect the unalienable rights to “life” and “liberty” on which this nation was founded, we would do well to continue to be vigilant in our defense of the rights of the unborn, and of those who — whatever the price — refuse to be coerced into overlooking their plight. B


for the past two decades, Supreme Knight Carl Anderson has been a vocal advocate for religious freedom, both nationally and internationally. His latest book gathers together many of his speeches, essays and articles in defense of this “first freedom,” as well as on topics related to the sanctity of life, faithful citizenship, and the family. Together, they offer insight about restrictions on religious liberty and a vision for the role of faith in public life. The hardcover volume, titled These Liberties We Hold Sacred: Essays on Faith and Citizenship in the 21st Century (Square One), will be released Jan. 27 and is available to pre-order at various booksellers and at


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There Is Always


A father recalls the reaction of doctors to his son’s fatal diagnosis and miraculous healing By Daniel Schachle

Editor’s Note: The November issue of Columbia featured the story of 5-year-old Michael “Mikey” Schachle, whose healing in utero was attributed to the intercession of Blessed Michael McGivney. What the article did not say was that after their unborn son was diagnosed with a fatal condition in February 2015, Daniel and Michelle Schachle were counseled to have an abortion. Daniel, a Knights of Columbus general agent in Tennessee, spoke about his reaction to that advice during his testimony at a prayer vigil for priests on Oct. 30, 2020, the eve of Father McGivney’s beatification. Excerpts from his remarks are printed here.


From top: Daniel Schachle laughs with his son Mikey at their home in Dickson, Tenn. • Ultrasound images show Mikey before and after he was miraculously healed in utero of a deadly case of fetal hydrops.

The Schachles begged God for a miracle and began asking Father McGivney to intercede for their son. Soon after the diagnosis, they went on a Knights of Columbus pilgrimage to Fatima and Rome in March 2015. Upon return to the U.S., we had another ultrasound. It was read by a different doctor who began to explain to Michelle about the team that would be working with our baby when he was born. Michelle stopped her and said, “Dr. Mary, what do you mean ‘when he is born’? I was told there was no hope?” When she heard this, the doctor flipped back in her chart

Photos by Spirit Juice Studios


hen we were given the diagnosis of genetic abnormality-induced fetal hydrops, we were told by the doctor that we had only two options: 1) Terminate the unfortunate pregnancy now, or 2) Wait for him to die and have a stillbirth. Option 2 had the additional risk to the health of my wife, as she could develop a condition to mirror my son’s. The doctor told us it wouldn’t really be an abortion since there was no hope. She had been in the high-risk field for 30 years and had never heard of an unborn child surviving this condition. We were devastated, as were our other children, with the diagnosis. I was also angry at the doctor for telling me it was OK to kill my child. Fathers are supposed to protect their children, not kill them. We are to lay aside status, money, influence, comfort and all other trappings to protect them physically and spiritually. I remember telling Michelle one day while she was crying, “I don’t know who the hell that doctor thinks she is, telling us there’s no hope.” However, my bride was much more charitable, telling me that the doctor was just worried about her. C O L U M B I A B JANUARY 2021

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and said, “Are you the one who just went to Fatima?” When Michelle said she was, the doctor told her, “Well, now you’re going to have a baby.” Michelle told her we were changing the name to Michael McGivney and why. The doctor was so happy, as her dad was a Knight! … On the day I was scheduled to return [from a conference] May 15, Michelle had a routine ultrasound scheduled. I received a call that morning that they were going to do an emergency C-section. …

The original doctor came in and told Michelle that she never thought we’d be here. Michelle told her she was so happy to see her, and that she brought her a gift and had been waiting to give it to her. She said, “This Miraculous Medal and holy water are from Fatima.” The doctor began to cry, took off her necklace and put on the medal and said, “You don’t know how much this means to me.” I am told she keeps the “before” and “after” ultrasounds on her desk to this day to remind her there is no such thing as “no hope.” B

A MILESTONE IN SERVING MOMS Florida State Council celebrates placement of more than 100 lifesaving ultrasound machines

Photo by Betsy Hansen


another milestone this past year, when Florida became the first K of C jurisdiction to donate 100 ultrasound machines to certified pregnancy resource centers. Leaders of the Florida State Council and University of Florida Council 13900 formally presented the 100th machine Oct. 15 to the Community Pregnancy Clinic in Gainesville, across the street from the university’s campus. “The center had an older machine that wasn’t very robust,” explained Grand Knight Peter Nguyen, a fourthyear engineering student. “This one gives pregnant women the opportunity to see their unborn child — especially mothers who aren’t sure what to do.” He added, “A university campus is a good place for an ultrasound machine. It gives the clinic a beautiful opportunity to change lives.” According to Deacon Gary Ingold, CEO of Community Pregnancy Clinics, the centers have a “90% success rate” with ultrasounds and/or counseling — meaning that “a woman who is abortion-minded or vulnerable chooses life for her baby.” Deacon Ingold, who is a member of St. William Council 10757 in Naples and a retired Navy pilot, further explained that ultrasound technology enhances the centers’ “mercy model,” which is based on Christlike compassion and gives women confidence regarding unplanned pregnancies. “Today, with the advancements in technology, we are able to get a three-dimensional view that allows mothers to see the baby,” Deacon Ingold said. “The Knights follow that technology and saw the improvements.” The Knights of Columbus Ultrasound Initiative is funded by state and local councils with matching grants from the Supreme Council’s Culture of Life Fund. Since the Order first launched the initiative in 2009, councils have placed more than 1,300 ultrasound machines — valued at more than $60 million — in certified pregnancy resource centers across the United States.

Bishop Felipe J. Estévez of St. Augustine (center) stands with Florida Knights after blessing the jurisdiction’s 100th ultrasound machine. Pictured, left to right, are Raúl Fernández, a member of University of Florida Council 13900; Florida State Deputy Scott O’Connor; Florida State Chaplain Msgr. Thomas Skindeleski; and Deacon Gary Ingold, CEO of Community Pregnancy Clinics and a member of St. William Council 10757 in Naples.

“Our Ultrasound Initiative is the greatest humanitarian achievement in the history of the Knights of Columbus,” Supreme Knight Carl Anderson noted in his annual report last August. “It is building the culture of life one heart and one child at a time.” With ultrasound machines placed in all 50 states, the initiative surpassed 1,000 machines in January 2019, and it continues to grow rapidly. While Florida was the first jurisdiction to donate 100 machines, other jurisdictions, including California, will soon follow suit. “It is something that Florida Knights have really gotten behind,” said State Deputy Scott O’Connor. “It brings people together for a cause we all support.” Since the 100th unit was dedicated, he added, Florida councils have already purchased seven more machines — and counting. B

TOM TRACY is a photojournalist who writes from West Palm Beach, Fla. JANUARY 2021 B C O L U M B I A

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JOURNEY OF FAITH A K of C family helps a young mother to choose life, return to God and find love By Jay Nies B Photos by Alyssa Lewis

Faith Major holds her son, Noah, in 2019. When Faith’s fiancé left because she refused an abortion, she turned for help to Pregnancy Resource Center of Rolla, Mo.



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lmost four years ago, Faith Major was engaged to be married when she found out she was pregnant. Still in college but nonetheless excited to be a mother, she visited Pregnancy Resource Center (PRC) of Rolla, in Missouri, for a free ultrasound. She came back about two weeks later, crestfallen. Her fiancé had broken up with her because she insisted on giving birth to the baby. “I felt betrayed, alone, confused, discouraged, hopeless,” Faith recalled. At the time, she was working a low-paying parttime job and had nowhere to live. Jane Dalton, who at that time was the center’s client services director, listened to Faith, and then asked her what she wanted. She wanted to give her baby life — and a good one, at that. She wanted to finish her degree, become financially self-sufficient and raise her baby to have a better life than she’d had so far. Jane told her: “You can, and we can help you.” Jane and her husband, Joe, had founded PRC of Rolla with several of Joe’s brother Knights in St. Patrick Council 2627 and their wives. The Daltons and the rest of the staff at PRC helped Faith choose life for her baby and vigorously pursue a hopeful future for herself and her child. There was room for Faith at St. Raymond’s Home, now owned by PRC of Rolla and known as Bridges, a residence for women who are pregnant and in need of a supportive community. “They convinced me I was not alone, that whatever I needed, they would help me get,” Faith recounted. “And that’s exactly what they did.” After her son, Noah, was born, Faith asked the Daltons to sponsor them into the Catholic Church. She also befriended and later fell in love with their son, Gabe, a member of Council 2627. The couple got married this past summer at St. Patrick Church in Rolla. “She once told me I’m her ‘knight in shining armor,’” Gabe Dalton recalled. “I replied, ‘Well, actually, I am a Knight!’” A NEW LIFE

Jane and Joe Dalton helped establish PRC of Rolla shortly after moving to the town in 2006. The Daltons were leading a national pro-life organization and raising eight children when they decided it would be better to do so in a rural setting. Within a day of their arrival, two people called to say they had been begging God to send a pro-life anchor to that community.

“That’s when I learned we had moved to a college town that had a Planned Parenthood but did not have a pregnancy center,” recalled Joe, now CEO of PRC. Council 2627 has supported the center from the outset with volunteer and financial assistance; in 2012, the council placed an ultrasound machine there through the Knights of Columbus Ultrasound Initiative. The nonprofit center offers a wide range of services to women who are pregnant and in crisis or need, including consultations with certified, professional life coaches who help clients make decisions based on their own needs. Expectant mothers who want longterm help, structure and life coaching can choose, like Faith, to live in PRC’s maternity residence. Before long, Faith was excelling in her college studies and soaring through the ‘My Ridiculously Amazing Life’ program. In 2017, she finished her degree, began her career as a cosmetologist and gave birth to Noah. What’s more, she accepted Christ back into her life. Faith was raised in a Christian household, but family difficulties had made it hard for her to know and trust God. “God really used my crisis to bring me closer to him,” she said. “And he continues to do that.” God also used the people around her, especially the Daltons. “I noticed that Catholic people forgive and love and give differently from what I learned to live like before,” she said. A turning point came just after a trip to Washington, D.C., with the Daltons in January 2019. Faith was invited to share her story with lawmakers as part of Heartbeat International’s Babies Go to Congress event during the March for Life. There, she met Vice President Mike Pence. “I got to tell him how I started out as a homeless, pregnant, part-time waitress, and went from that to being a mom, a college graduate employed in my field of study with a 401(k), and had started a business,” she said. “If that’s not a story of God’s miraculous way of turning things around, I don’t know what is.” On the flight back to Missouri, Faith asked the Daltons about Catholicism, and their answers gave her peace and clarity. “What I learned set well with my soul,” she said. “I asked God what all of this meant, and he said, ‘It means you’re supposed to be Catholic.’” She began going to Mass with the Daltons each Sunday at St. Patrick Parish and preparing for the sacraments of initiation. JANUARY 2021 B C O L U M B I A

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On June 23, 2019, Faith was confirmed, with Jane as her sponsor, and received her first Holy Communion. Noah was baptized, with Joe and Jane as godparents. MADE FOR EACH OTHER


Jane and Joe Dalton are delighted to have Faith as a daughter-in-law and Noah as a grandson. “What I love most about Faith and my son is that they truly seek the will of God and then do whatever 22

Faith holds Noah as he is baptized by Father David Veit in 2019 at St. Patrick Church in Rolla. Jane and Joe Dalton (right) are Noah’s godparents, and Jane is Faith’s confirmation sponsor.

they possibly can to follow that,” Jane said. Faith has started volunteering at the center and studying to become a certified life coach. She hopes her story will inspire other women who are pregnant and frightened to ask God for a miracle, and then work with him to bring it about. “I’m so grateful the Lord is using what little I had to offer in exchange for all of these opportunities to draw closer to him and become the woman he always intended me to be,” she said. Jane has counseled more than 10,000 pregnant women in crisis during her decades of pro-life work, and she is convinced that no one ever wants to have an abortion. “It’s often their last resort because they think they don’t have any other options,” she said. “We tell them, ‘If you choose another option, we’ll help you fill in the gaps.’” Faith is just one of the 3,397 abortion-vulnerable women that PRC of Rolla has served over the years. Of those, 3,389 have chosen life for their babies — over a 99.7% success rate. “We give God 100% of the credit for that,” Joe said.

Photos by Alyssa Jean Studios

As she became close with Joe and Jane, Faith got to know the rest of the family, including their son Gabe, 21. A member of Council 2627 like his dad, Gabe helped her move into the maternity home and then into her own home when Noah was 2. Both admired each other from afar but knew that a relationship would not be appropriate while Faith was a client of PRC. “She later told me she thought I was trying to ignore her,” Gabe recalled. “In reality, I was trying not to stare too much.” Gabe completed a welding course and accepted a job in Minnesota. “When he came back to visit, I saw him in a totally different light,” Faith recalled. “He was really mature and had a definite confidence about him.” Faith was praying about marriage at Mass one day when Noah started to fidget in the pew. Gabe offered to take him to the back of church so she could receive Communion in peace. After Mass, she found them both kneeling and praying in the Blessed Sacrament chapel. “I saw it as a miracle moment,” she recalled. “My son never behaved this way. I’d sat next to Gabe so many times at Mass. My eyes were suddenly open and I knew he was the one.” Not long after, Gabe and Faith went on their first date, and within months, Gabe asked 3-year-old Noah for permission to marry his mother. Noah said yes, and so did Faith. The couple were united in marriage June 27, 2020. Joe walked Faith down the aisle. Two women who had lived with Faith at the maternity home served as her attendants. Gabe is enjoying life as a new husband and a father. “I believe God had been preparing me for Faith, as well as for Noah, my entire life in so many different ways,” he said. “I definitely didn’t always see it at the time, but now very it’s clear to me.”


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Jane called the story of Faith, Noah and Gabe a “God journey.” “It’s what God does,” she said. “He doesn’t overwhelm us. He just keeps giving us a little bit at a time. Just enough for us to keep saying yes.” Joe offers a challenge to his fellow Knights: “There are nearly 3,000 local pregnancy centers in this country alone. If you’re not already supporting yours, create a

relationship with them and start doing things to help them.” “Remember that all life is precious,” he said, “and that nothing is impossible with God.” B JAY NIES is editor of The Catholic Missourian, the newspaper of the Diocese of Jefferson City, and a member of Father Helias Council 1054 in Jefferson City.

Faith and Gabe Dalton are pictured with Noah, now 3 years old, this past November. They were married June 27, 2020, at St. Patrick Church.


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Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann of Kansas City walks in procession during last year’s Vigil Mass for Life at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C.

the bandages uncovering the patient’s face. The woman is stunningly, drop-dead beautiful. However, the doctors and nurses shake their heads in disbelief and dismay. They apologize profusely to the patient for their failure as they remove their own surgical masks, revealing their own grotesque appearance. The closing music begins as you realize that, in this fictional Twilight Zone world, beautiful is ugly and the hideous is gorgeous. We gather these days for the somber commemoration of the tragically flawed Supreme Court twin decisions — Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton. The court’s twisted logic established a so-called right to an inherently evil action, the killing of innocent preborn children. The 1973 decisions opened the door to a moral twilight zone where evil is revered as good.

In the face of profound moral confusion, we must restore a respect for life through education and loving service By Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann

Editor’s Note: On Jan. 23, 2020, Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann of Kansas City, chairman of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities, celebrated the annual Vigil Mass for Life at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C. The following text, abridged from his homily, is reprinted with permission.


ons ago, I enjoyed watching The Twilight Zone. One entire episode was shot in a hospital room, and as the show unfolded, it became clear that the patient, whose face was completely bandaged, had been through a series of plastic surgeries attempting to correct a severe disfigurement. The lead surgeon informed the beleaguered patient that they could only attempt one more surgery. In the closing scene, the final surgery had been completed. Now is the moment of truth. The nurses remove 24

Sadly, during the past 47 years, abortion advocates have become more radical and intolerant. The killing of one’s child is exalted as heroic and brave. Even the most modest regulation of abortion facilities for the protection of women’s health is vigorously opposed. Abortion was described by early feminists Susan B. Anthony and Alice Paul as the ultimate exploitation of women, but in this ethically topsy-turvy twilight zone, it is now hailed as the cornerstone of women’s rights. Sadly, in many ways for pro-lifers the days have grown darker. In recent years, abortion advocates have abandoned their slick slogan of “choice.” The former proponents of “choice” now seek to coerce pro-life Americans to become complicit in the killing of unborn children, as evidenced by demanding tax-funded abortions, compelling ministries like the Little Sisters of the Poor to provide abortifacients in their health plans, and efforts to force Catholic hospitals to provide abortions. Thankfully, not everything is doom and gloom! Despite a biased secular media, decades of persistent pro-life educational efforts have resulted in our nation’s youth being more pro-life than their parents. The efforts of more than 2,700 pregnancy resource centers, surrounding with love and practical support more than half a million mothers annually, have helped to steadily and significantly reduce both the number and rate of abortions in

Photo by Jeffrey Bruno




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our nation over the past 30 years. Pregnant and parenting moms in need are in our parishes and neighborhoods. While many pregnancy resources are appropriately coordinated at the diocesan or regional level, moms in need are best reached at the local level. We have well over 17,000 Catholic parishes in the United States. Each parish is best able to identify the local pregnancy help resources that are currently available and to identify the potential gaps. As Pope Francis reminds us, our parishes are called to be “islands of mercy in the midst of a sea of indifference.” I urge you to inquire with your local pregnancy resource center how you can help. Lives that we may not currently be able to protect by the law, we can rescue through love. Our goal is not only to identify gaps or areas with insufficient resources, but to take concrete steps to expand the help available to mothers, not only during the pregnancy but for months and even years after the child’s birth. We want to do everything possible to help both mother and child not only survive, but thrive.

CNS photo/Vatican Media


With 14 other bishops, I met with Pope Francis last week. I shared with him that the U.S. bishops in our November (2019) meeting had reaffirmed that protecting the unborn remains a preeminent priority. I told him we received some criticism, even being accused of insulting the pope. Pope Francis appeared stunned. He asked: Why? I said because we called the protection of the unborn a “preeminent priority.” His immediate response was: It is a preeminent priority. Pope Francis said if we do not defend life, no other rights matter. The Holy Father said that abortion is first a human rights issue. Of course, our faith enlightens and motivates our concern for the unborn, but protecting the lives of unborn children is not a matter of religious faith, but upholding the most fundamental of human rights. Pope Francis was aware of the March for Life in the United States and was delighted to know the large numbers of pilgrims anticipated, especially the

participation of so many young people. The Holy Father asked me to thank especially those who work in our pregnancy resource centers for accompanying women with difficult pregnancies, for being part of these “islands of mercy.” … When you are appointed a bishop, you are invited to choose an episcopal motto. Most often, the motto is a phrase from the Scriptures. In my case, it is “Life Will Be Victorious.” It is not from the Scriptures but from Pope John Paul II’s The Gospel of Life! I chose this motto in part because of my long involvement with the Church’s pro-life apostolate. It expresses a confidence that God will bless our efforts and, with his divine assistance, we will succeed in restoring a respect for the sanctity of each and every human life — no matter age or stage of development, no matter race or ethnicity, no matter mental or physical abilities. I chose it even more because I pray my ministry as a bishop is one that brings hope to others, a hope not based on human wisdom or strength, but on the love of God revealed in the embryo conceived in the womb of Mary — the baby born in the cave in Bethlehem, the man who through his ministry freed many from the enslavements of sin, who ultimately gave his life for us on Calvary and who vanquished the power of death through his Resurrection, the ultimate victory of life. B

Pope Francis Blesses Pro-Life Bell Supported by Polish Knights POPE FRANCIS blessed — and rang — a symbolic bell representing the “Voice of the Unborn” on Sept. 23 in a Vatican courtyard. “May its ring awaken the consciences of legislators and all people of good will in Poland and the whole world,” the pope told a delegation that included Krzysztof Zuba, state deputy of the Knights of Columbus in Poland. The bell, commissioned by the Yes to Life Foundation with support from the Poland State Council, will be rung at pro-life events throughout the country, including the March for Life and Family in Warsaw. Weighing more than 2,000 pounds, the bronze bell is adorned with Scripture (Mt 5:17, Ex 10:13), the image of an unborn child and a quote from Blessed Jerzy Popiełuszko: “A child’s life begins under the mother’s heart.” B


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Members of St. Mary of the Assumption Council 8378 in St. Catharines, Ontario, stand with the “Keep Christ in Christmas” sign they set up in front of St. Mary of the Assumption Catholic Church.



The California State Council and the Orange Diocese Chapter hosted a Father McGivney Mass of Beatification viewing party Oct. 31. Afterward, Bishop Kevin Vann of Orange led the rosary and blessed the Knights who had joined the Order the evening before at a chapter-wide combined exemplification.

After the initial COVID-19 lockdown ended, members of St. Faustina Council 14217 in Clermont, Fla., designed and emailed an invitation to attend Mass, underscoring the importance of the Eucharist and encouraging parishioners to return to in-person liturgies while observing safety protocol.



Our Lady of the Rosary Council 807 in Dover, N.H., organized a Blue Mass for local police, firefighters and other first responders at St. Mary’s Catholic Church. Father Agapit “Aggie” Jean, New Hampshire state chaplain and council chaplain, concelebrated the Mass and then blessed emergency vehicles after the liturgy. BLESSED MCGIVNEY STATUE

Members of Christ the King Council 4114 in Syracuse, N.Y., and Christ the King Assembly 1575 in Westvale installed a statue of Blessed Michael McGivney at Holy Family Church in Syracuse. The statue was dedicated in honor of deceased assembly member Matthew J. Cerio, who brought five family members into the Order. 26

St. Thomas More Council 7431 in Mooresville, Ind., partnered with St. Thomas More Church staff and parishioners to arrange a gesture of gratitude for their administrator, Father Francis Joseph Kalapurackal. Council members directed the cars of hundreds of parishioners who drove by the rectory to show their appreciation for Father Kalapurackal’s work to provide liturgies online during the pandemic. A NEW WAY TO PRAY

When the pandemic prevented members from meeting in person for prayer, St. Kieran Council 13983 in Shelby Township, Mich., and St. John Neumann Assembly 478 in Utica organized a group rosary via videoconference every Sunday for Knights and parishioners.

Nativity Council 16604 in Thompson’s Station, Tenn., has maintained an outdoor rosary walk since it was constructed at the Catholic Church of the Nativity in Spring Hill. In the last two years, members have installed Stations of the Cross and a memorial garden with kneelers and benches for prayer. CELEBRATING IN UTAH

The Utah State Council organized a Mass of Thanksgiving for the beatification of Father Michael McGivney. Bishop Oscar Azarcón Solís of Salt Lake City celebrated the Mass at the Cathedral of the Madeleine.

Past Grand Knight Mark Goetz (right) of Holy Cross Council 7904 in Mesa, Ariz., presents an engraved chalice to Father Gabriel Terrill, a member of the council who was ordained in June 2020 for the Diocese of Phoenix. Council 7904 financially supported Father Terrill, among other seminarians, during his studies.



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When a member of Mater Ecclesiae Council 14786 in Mount Joy, Pa., was hospitalized for bypass surgery, his brother Knights helped the family by mowing the lawn and completing other household chores.

Members of St. Ann’s Council 11265 in Smithfield, N.C., completed several home improvement projects for a widowed parishioner of St. Ann Catholic Church who had reached out for help. The Knights planted bushes, replaced locks, painted the porch and repaired leaking faucets. SHARING OUR HISTORY

Father Perez Council 1444 in Chicago purchased copies of The Knights of Columbus: An Illustrated History for the libraries of St. Xavier University and nine Catholic high schools. Council members who graduated from the various schools delivered the books. LAPTOPS FOR DISTANCE LEARNING

St. Timothy Council 10802 in Escondido, Calif., donated 15 laptops to St. Joseph Academy, a Catholic school in San Marcos. The computers, required for virtual distance learning, were given to families who could not afford to purchase their own.


Archbishop O’Neill Council 8896 in Regina, Saskatchewan, donated funds to three local organizations serving families experiencing poverty: CA$1,000 to the Families in Need ministry at Holy Child Parish; CA$300 to the Regina Food Bank; and CA$200 to Farmland Legacies, a nonprofit that supports sustainable agriculture and food security. FAMILY FUN HIKES

Epiphany of Our Lord Council 14495 in Tampa, Fla., hosted a series of family hikes at a local state park, drawing some 100 Knights and other parishioners. Father Edwin Palka, pastor of Epiphany of Our Lord Catholic Church, blessed participants at the first big hike before they set out. MILK FOR CHILDREN

Paombong (Luzon North) Council 14177 raised nearly 30,000 Philippine pesos (more than $600) via an online appeal to provide milk for young children during the pandemic.

District Deputy Noel S. Lacanilao and members of Sto. Niño de Baseco Council 16245 in Manila, Luzon South, distribute food packages to nearly 500 families affected by the pandemic. Luzon South Deputy Bonifacio Martinez and Luzon South Secretary Danilo Sanchez coordinated the relief operation following a strict lockdown in the community. CHRISTMAS CHEER TIMES THREE

Marquette Council 1437 in New Orleans sponsored three collections during the Christmas season: a toy drive for Covenant House New Orleans, a shelter for homeless youth; a sock and clothing drive for Ozanam Inn, a Catholic social service agency; and a food drive for the St. Ann Food Pantry in Metairie.

Scott Anders (left) and Len Moritz, members of St. Virgilius Council 185 in Newtown, Conn., stand with students from St. Rose of Lima School. The Knights gave every student a U.S. flag for the school’s Veterans Day assembly and prayer service. JANUARY 2021 B C O L U M B I A



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Dave Sladek, a member of Abbot Pennings Council 3955 in De Pere, Wis., assists young customers at a Christmas tree sale sponsored by the council to raise funds for community charities. The council has sold Christmas trees annually for more than 50 years, during which it has raised approximately $390,000 for people in need.

Members of Frontenac Council 728 in Kingston, Ontario, presented a donation of CA$5,000 to the local St. Vincent de Paul Society. The funds, which came from the sale of the council’s youth camp property, helped the organization replace a van that had been stolen several months earlier. COMMUNITY TESTING

Mount Vernon Council 5998 in Alexandria, Va., sponsored a day of free COVID-19 testing for the community in partnership with Good Shepherd Catholic Church’s Hispanic ministry and the Fairfax County Health Department. Health care professionals administered the tests and offered guidance on accessing food, housing and other needs. CURBSIDE COLLECTION

To facilitate parishioner offerings during the pandemic, City of Gloucester (N.J.) Council 674 held a “curbside 28

collection” in front of St. Mary’s Church each Sunday. The council publicized the collections through social media, the parish website and announcements during livestreamed Masses. RESERVATION ROAD TRIP

Joseph Hyacinth Valine Council 11246 in Cedar City, Utah, led a community effort to aid members of the Navajo Nation, who were hit hard by the coronavirus. The Knights collected more than three tons of food and supplies in a trailer at Christ the King Catholic Church and drove it more than five hours to the reservation. URGENT NEEDS MET

In response to budget shortfalls due to the pandemic, Queen of Peace Council 9263 in Salem, Ore., organized an urgent fund drive for the parish hunger relief ministry, The Table of Plenty. In two weeks, Knights collected more than $3,700 to help families in need.

Irving Garcia, a member of Father Patrick Power Council 4588 in Livermore, Calif., wraps Christmas presents for members of the community. Council 4588 collected and delivered donations and gifts — totaling an estimated $20,000 — to more than 100 families during the Christmas season.

TOP LEFT: Photo by Cloud 7 Photography


Members of St. Francis Xavier Council 13278 in Phoenix helped a Knight with kidney disease return to his home after a hospital stay and long recovery. They cleaned and restored his house, replacing floors, painting walls and repairing plumbing, while the Knight convalesced for eight months in the home of a fellow member. The council continues to help with doctor appointments as he prepares for transplant surgery.



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Prince of Peace Council 11537 in Hoover, Ala., helped Life on Wheels, a pro-life organization, purchase an RV shelter for its mobile ultrasound unit. The council also donated two iPads to the group, and members have volunteered to drive the RVs as needed. RESPECT LIFE MASS

Members of Msgr. Bishop Assembly 162 and Msgr. Bishop Council 2112, both in Orlando, Fla., participated with their families in a special Mass at Blessed Trinity Catholic Church in remembrance of aborted children. Afterward, the group processed with flowers to a shrine dedicated to the unborn in the church courtyard and prayed there together.

Past State Deputy Joseph Salaiz of California (left) formally transfers the Knights of Columbus Silver Rose to Arizona Silver Rose Chairman and former District Deputy Robert Julien in a ceremony after Mass at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Kingman, Ariz., in the presence of Father Victor Yakubu, the church’s parochial administrator. Eight Silver Roses travel from Canada to Mexico each year, promoting respect for life, fostering Marian devotion and demonstrating the unity of Knights in North America. DONATION BY APPOINTMENT

Msgr. Alfred Raye Council 9201 in Houston usually conducts six blood drives each year after Sunday Masses at St. Luke’s Catholic Church. The council adjusted during the pandemic lockdown by sponsoring a midweek appointment-only drive that incorporated social distancing restrictions, collecting nearly 40 units.

TOP RIGHT: Photo by Julie Arlene

TOP LEFT: Photo by Cloud 7 Photography


Ed Casey (left) and Paul Rubacky, both past grand knights of St. Catherine of Bologna Council 6212 in Ringwood, N.J., assemble ventilators to be delivered to hospitals in New York and New Jersey.

Father Thomas A. Judge Council 6893 in East Northport, N.Y., joined with St. Anthony of Padua Parish to purchase two banners thanking health care personnel and other essential workers for their service during the pandemic. Knights placed the banners in front of St. Anthony’s Church and Huntington Hospital. BABY BOTTLE DRIVE

St. Nicholas Council 7011 in Sterling Heights, Mich., held a baby bottle fund drive at Sts. Cyril and Methodius Catholic Church to benefit Gianna House, a local pregnancy resource

center and residence for expectant and new mothers and their children. The Knights collected an estimated 200 bottles filled by parishioners with approximately $6,800. MASKS FOR MEALS AND MASS

St. Bronislava Council 13880 in Plover, Wis., purchased 5,000 masks for several area food pantries and two local parishes, St. Bronislava Parish in Plover and St. Maximilian Kolbe Parish in Almond. EMERGENCY BLOOD DRIVE

Father Justin P. Garvey Council 6686 in Bothell, Wash., hosted an emergency blood drive in partnership with a local blood bank in response to drastic shortages at The Life Care Center, a nursing home in Kirkland. The Knights collected more than 100 units of blood. See more at Please submit your council activities to JANUARY 2021 B C O L U M B I A



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ince Blessed Michael McGivney founded the Knights of Columbus in 1882, the Order has grown to 2 million members, with local councils spanning three continents. Putting their faith into action in their parishes and communities, Knights throughout the world are united in service to the Church, to families and to neighbors in need.


Members of Westbridge Council 7922 in Weston-Woodbridge, Ontario, return a statue of Blessed Michael McGivney to Knights of Columbus Park in North York after having it cleaned in honor of Father McGivney’s Oct. 31 beatification. The council installed the statue in 2003, soon after the neighborhood park was named to recognize the Knights’ service to the community.

Philippines Criscencio Legaspi (left) and Eduardo Abrera, members of Mary, Queen of Heaven and Earth-Lancaster Council 16575 in Imus City, Luzon South, fit a prosthetic hand for a person whose limb had been amputated following a fishing injury. The council provides prostheses in partnership with the LN4 Hand Project, a nonprofit based in San Francisco that supplies free prosthetic hands for people in need worldwide. 30

United States Members of Ghanaian Catholic Council 6305 in East Hartford, Conn., prepare to distribute more than 50 Thanksgiving food baskets at St. Isaac Jogues Church Food Pantry in November 2020. Felix Mensah (second from right), coordinator of the food pantry, invited his fellow Knights and their families to help with the annual event.



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Candles representing rosary beads illuminate San Isidro Labrador Church in Ciudad Guzmán during a prayer service organized by San José de Zapotlán Council 3338 in October 2020. Father Eliseo Lucas Coronel, the council’s chaplain, led more than 200 Knights and other parishioners in a rosary for the end of the pandemic and the evangelization of every continent.


France Grand Knight Damien Brière (right) and JeanBrieuc Olier, members of St. Don Bosco Council 17338 in Bordeaux, build a refreshments stand for youth ministry activities and other social events at the Parish of Talence. Knights regularly complete projects for their community in the woodworking shop, which belongs to a member of the council.

Members of Święta Jadwiga Królowa Council 15268 in Rzeszów gather in front of a bronze statue of St. John Paul II at a local park after participating in the regional March for Life and Family. JANUARY 2021 B C O L U M B I A

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The new Knights Gear collection will include items like:

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ZIP/POSTAL CODE Complete this coupon and mail to: The Father McGivney Guild, 1 Columbus Plaza, New Haven, CT 06510-3326 or enroll online at:

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Photo by Todd Joyce

Knights of Charity Every day, Knights all over the world are given opportunities to make a difference — whether through community service, raising money or prayer. We celebrate each and every Knight for his strength, his compassion and his dedication to building a better world.

Members of St. Brigid of Kildare Council 10863 in Dublin, Ohio, stand outside Women’s Care Center in Columbus with outreach director Madeline Pesavento. Women’s Care Center, a network of pregnancy resource centers, serves women at 33 sites in 12 states. Council 10863 regularly donates funds and supplies to the Columbus facility and assists with landscaping, diaper drives and other projects.

To be featured here, send your council’s “Knights in Action” photo as well as its description to: Columbia, 1 Columbus Plaza, New Haven, CT 06510-3326 or e-mail: COLUMBIA JAN 21 ENG COVERS 12_14 FINAL.indd 3

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‘Jesus is always at work in our lives.’ There is a real possibility that I never would have existed outside the womb. My birth mother had scheduled an abortion, but grace intervened, and she placed me for adoption instead. When I first felt the call to the priesthood many years later, it seemed to come out of nowhere. Growing up, I thought about being a baseball player, a doctor, a game show host. But a priest? Never. Now I can see that the Lord was preparing me for this vocation from the very beginning. My parents adopted me and planted the first seeds of faith; the witness of good priests, religious sisters and lay teachers sowed countless more. When I started to pray in a more intimate way as a college student, those seeds sprouted; Jesus drew me into his heart and led me to the seminary. Seeds can lay dormant and unseen for a long time, yet Jesus is always at work in our lives. I am humbled and grateful that he has chosen to share his priesthood with me.

Photo by Bob Ervin

Father Ryan Kaup Diocese of Lincoln Father Joseph Vanderheiden Council 3152 Nebraska City, Neb.


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