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K N I G H T S O F C O LU MBUS
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F E AT U R E S
Medal of Honor Medic An interview with Capt. Gary M. Rose about his service in the Vietnam War. BY COLUMBIA STAFF
14 Knights of the ‘Greatest Generation’ Knights who served in World War II tell their stories. BY COLUMBIA STAFF
20 Mission Accomplished A young Knight accompanies a relic of St. Francis Xavier on a historic pilgrimage across Canada. BY DEBORAH GYAPONG
24 A Celebration of Mary, Mother of the Church The Church’s Marian identity will be honored in a new feast day, on the Monday after Pentecost. BY SEAN INNERST
Five Canadian soldiers sit on the steps of a K of C Army Hut clubhouse in Prince George, British Columbia, circa 1940.
D E PA RT M E N T S 3
Building a better world Native American Catholic communities demonstrate diversity of culture and the unity of faith. BY SUPREME KNIGHT CARL A. ANDERSON
Knights of Columbus Multimedia Archives
Learning the faith, living the faith
Knights of Columbus News Order Provides Aid to Persecuted Christians During Holy Week • Knights in the Philippines Walk for Life • Polish President Thanks Knights for Support of Hurricane Victims
Christians at Risk Nebraska Knights intensify effort to help persecuted Iraqi Christians return to their ancient homeland. BY MIKE MAY
28 Knights in Action
The mission of evangelization remains essential to the Church’s identity today. BY SUPREME CHAPLAIN ARCHBISHOP WILLIAM E. LORI
PLUS: Catholic Man of the Month
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The Way to Happiness OF ALL THE TEACHINGS of Jesus recorded in Scripture, do you know what’s the most common? One saying in particular appears in all four Gospels, twice in Matthew and Luke: “Whoever seeks to preserve his life will lose it, but whoever loses it will save it” (Lk 17:33, cf. Mt 10:39, 16:25; Mk 8:35; Lk 9:24; Jn 12:25). This theme of self-sacrifice, especially for the sake of Christ and the kingdom of God, is repeated several other ways, such as in the parable of the grain of wheat (cf. Jn 12:24). It speaks not only to the preeminence of the Gospel above all worldly pursuits, but also to something fundamental about human nature. The Second Vatican Council put it this way: Our creation in the likeness with God “reveals that man, who is the only creature on earth which God willed for itself, cannot fully find himself except through a sincere gift of himself” (Gaudium et Spes, 24). With this in mind, it is perhaps unsurprising that religious observance is on the decline today. Our era is often characterized by “selfies” and entitlement, in contrast to the selflessness and heroism that defined the “Greatest Generation,” for instance. Nor is it surprising that, according to many studies, young people report greater feelings of unhappiness. In his new apostolic exhortation on the call to holiness, Pope Francis reflects on the Beatitudes and notes that the word “happy” or “blessed” “becomes a synonym for ‘holy.’ It expresses the fact that those faithful to God and his word, by their self-giving, gain true happiness” (Gaudete et Exsultate, 64).
Nonetheless, the wisdom of Scripture and of older generations endures. It can be seen, for example, in the charitable work of the Knights of Columbus and in the lives of many Catholic young people who live counter-culturally. This issue of Columbia features an interview with Capt. Gary M. Rose, a Knight who received the Medal of Honor for his extraordinary bravery as a medic during a classified mission in the Vietnam War (see page 8); profiles of World War II veterans who reflect on their experience as servicemen and as Knights (see page 14); and the story of how a 20year-old Knight helped extend the missionary presence of St. Francis Xavier to present-day Canada (see page 20). Consider, finally, a reflection on the new feast day celebrating the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church (see page 24). This memorial, which links the humility and maternity of Mary to the birth of the Church at Pentecost, further reminds us of the call to self-sacrificial love, the call to become missionary disciples and the call to holiness. The Christian life, after all, is made possible by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, whom St. John Paul II called the “personal expression” of eternal, self-giving love (Dominum et Vivificantem, 10). And true blessedness — on earth as in heaven — consists of sharing in this love of the Most Holy Trinity, in whose image and likeness we are created.♦ ALTON J. PELOWSKI EDITOR
CIS Resource: The Gifts of the Holy Spirit The Gifts of the Holy Spirit According to Saint Thomas Aquinas (#360) by Dominican Father Peter John Cameron explains how the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit — wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety, fear of the Lord — draw us closer to Christ. Part of the Veritas Booklet Series published by the Order’s Catholic Information Service, this booklet is infused with the teaching of Aquinas and rich Marian insights. To download or order this resource, visit kofc.org/cis. 2 ♦ COLUMBIA ♦
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COLUMBIA PUBLISHER Knights of Columbus ________ 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 Anna M. Bninski ASSOCIATE EDITOR
Venerable 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 MAIL COLUMBIA 1 Columbus Plaza New Haven, CT 06510-3326 ADDRESS CHANGES 203-752-4210, option #3 email@example.com PRAYER CARDS & SUPPLIES 203-752-4214 COLUMBIA INQUIRIES 203-752-4398 FAX 203-752-4109 K OF C CUSTOMER SERVICE 1-800-380-9995 E-MAIL firstname.lastname@example.org INTERNET kofc.org/columbia ________ 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.
Copyright © 2018 All rights reserved ________ ON THE COVER Retired Capt. Gary M. Rose, a U.S. Army medic and member of the Knights who served in the Vietnam War, is pictured wearing the Medal of Honor.
ON THE COVER: Photo by Spirit Juice Studios
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‘Hold On to What Is Good’ Native American Catholic communities demonstrate diversity of culture and the unity of faith by Supreme Knight Carl A. Anderson
THIS YEAR, I spent much of Holy the Indian peoples, but Christ, in the Week in the Diocese of Gallup, N.M., members of his Body, is himself Indian.” encountering the presence of our Often, in Columbia and elsewhere, I Catholic faith among Native Americans. have written about Pope Francis’ chalI met Mercy Corps volunteers at the St. lenge to bring the Gospel to the periph- and despair. Michaels Association for Special Educa- eries. But Holy Week made clear to me Instead, after his baptism, he lived a tion on the Navajo Reservation; greeted that there is a “periphery” in the heart life of hope and reconciliation — for 50 Navajos at the Villa Guadalupe residence of our own continent — one largely years evangelizing his fellow Native of the Little Sisters of the Poor; visited San overlooked by many Catholics but American people. Estevan del Rey mission church in “Sky where the Gospel has already been lived There is a Pueblo Indian prayer familCity” on the Acoma Pueblo — the scene for centuries. iar to the Laguna tribe that reads like a of a dramatic episode in Willa Cather’s “Today, people are realizing more and poem: “Hold on to what is good, even Death Comes for the Archbishop; and spoke more clearly that we all belong to the if it’s a handful of earth. Hold on to with a missionary priest about what you believe, even if it’s a his pastoral work on the Zuni tree that stands by itself. Hold reservation. on to what you must do, even There is a “periphery” in the But the high point was the if it’s a long way from here. heart of our own continent — one Hold on to your life, even it Easter Vigil at San José Mission on the Laguna Pueblo reservait’s easier to let go. Hold on to where the Gospel has already tion, after Dorian and I shared my hand, even if someday I’ll dinner with a parish family. be gone away from you.” been lived for centuries. Mass was an extraordinary We encourage our children experience as the church, built to read the great literature of in 1699, filled with light during the pro- one human family,” John Paul II said pagan Greece such as Homer’s Iliad, not cession. As Communion ended, the during his 1987 meeting with native because we somehow endorse such congregation sang a hymn in the native peoples in Phoenix, days before his visit things as King Agamemnon’s bloody Keresan language. to Fort Simpson. sacrifice of his daughter Iphigenia to the Later, the governors of the pueblo “Within this family,” he continued, goddess Artemis, but because such stostood in front of the altar and spoke of “each people preserves and expresses its ries tell us something important about the need to continue to live in a way that own identity and enriches others with human nature and the moral life. We brought their Catholic faith “in har- its gifts of culture, tradition, customs, should not hesitate to explore similar mony with their Indian way of life,” to stories, song, dance, art and skills.” lessons in our own history. treat each other in a Christian way and An outstanding example of this is Pope Francis recently reminded us, “to speak to each other with respect.” Nicholas Black Elk, whose cause for “Each culture that receives the Gospel The experience brought to life what canonization has recently been opened enriches the Church by showing a new St. John Paul II had said in Fort Simp- in the Diocese of Rapid City, S.D. aspect of Christ’s face.” son, in the Northwest Territories, three He fought at the Battle of Little If we are truly the people “who long to decades ago: “The worthy traditions of Bighorn and later witnessed the death see His face,” then there is one further the Indian tribes were strengthened and and destruction of the Minneconjou at voyage of discovery, this time close to enriched by the Gospel message. ... Wounded Knee. These experiences home, that we have been invited to make. Thus not only is Christianity relevant to could have led to a life of anger, hatred Vivat Jesus!
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Beyond Dissent The mission of evangelization remains essential to the Church’s identity today by Supreme Chaplain Archbishop William E. Lori
FIFTY YEARS AGO, Blessed Pope to open their hearts more widely to the Paul VI issued Humanae Vitae. In this Lord and to actively share the faith with prophetic encyclical, the Holy Father the searching and the straying alike. taught that artificial birth control is not At the heart of the Second Vatican permitted because it breaks the bond Council and the pontificates that have called for “re-proposing” the Gospel in between two inseparable and God- followed is the call to proclaim Christ places where many no longer practice given aspects of marital love: its capac- in our time, so that people may open the faith and where new forms of secuity to express the exclusive and total their hearts to the Lord and find salva- larism have taken hold. Pope Benedict, love of husband and wife for each other tion from their sins and the path to ho- like those before him, emphasized that and its capacity to beget new life. The liness in his Church. evangelization entails an opening of the document unleashed a firestorm heart. It involves becoming of criticism for maintaining a agents of the Holy Spirit, helpteaching allegedly made obsoing people have a profound exlete by the advent of “the pill.” Evangelization involves becoming perience of Jesus and his love — The pope’s warnings that the a love that opens them to the agents of the Holy Spirit, helping Word of God, the sacraments, pervasive practice of contraception would open the door to people have a profound experience virtuous living and ultimately promiscuity, abortion and the their vocation to holiness. breakdown of the family went Evangelization is also clearly of Jesus and his love. unheeded. Only a small percentral to the pontificate of Pope centage accepted this teaching, Francis, who penned Evangelii and many still dissent. Gaudium (The Joy of the Gospel ). He In 1975, Paul VI issued another FROM VATICAN II UNTIL TODAY speaks of the urgency of this mission and landmark document, Evangelii Nun- Following his predecessors, St. John calls each one of us and our parishes and tiandi (On Evangelization in the Modern Paul II called for a “new evangelization” church institutions to “missionary conWorld). In it, he tapped into the deepest — not new in content, for “Jesus Christ version” (30). He challenges bishops and root of the Second Vatican Council, is the same yesterday, today, and for- priests to take the lead in creating diocewhich his predecessor, St. John XXIII, ever” (Heb 13:8) — but new “in its ses and parishes that are on fire with the had convoked to proclaim Christ anew ardor, methods, and expression.” He mission of spreading the Gospel. He “as the center of history and of life.” reaffirmed the Church’s mission to pro- challenges religious women and men “to Drawing together the teaching of the claim the Gospel, stressing the obliga- wake up the world” by their witness to council, Paul VI described evangeliza- tion of the Church to evangelize those the kingdom of God. And he challenges tion as the Church’s core identity and whose faith had grown dim and to re- laypeople to engage robustly in this mismission. In short, the Church “exists in evangelize nations where the faith is sion in their families and daily work. order to evangelize” (14). This mission fading. St. John Paul II said no one is is directed both toward people who exempt from the duty of proclaiming A NEW PENTECOST have not yet heard the Good News and the Gospel, and laypeople are the prime What has been the response of the those who no longer practice their faith. agents of the new evangelization. Church to this call for a new evangelizaPope Paul called on all members of the Pope Benedict XVI likewise pro- tion? One survey published in 2005 Church, not just clergy and religious, moted the new evangelization. He asked various Christian congregations 4 ♦ COLUMBIA ♦
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whether spreading the faith is a high priority. In conservative Protestant congregations, some 75 percent answered in the affirmative; 57 percent of AfricanAmerican congregations agreed. Among U.S. Catholic parishes, only 6 percent did — not exactly an enthusiastic embrace of the central thrust of the Second Vatican Council or the teaching of recent popes. Their warnings go unheeded as the number of practicing Catholics declines. This constitutes a kind of “soft” dissent, not so much from a specific teaching but rather from the Lord’s missionary mandate and from
H O LY FAT H E R ’ S P R AY E R I N T E N T I O N
POPE FRANCIS: CNS photo/Paul Haring — BlESSEd VlAdImIR GHIkA: Courtesy of the Archdiocese of Bucharest
Offered in Solidarity with Pope Francis That the lay faithful may fulfill their specific mission, by responding with creativity to the challenges that face the world today.
L I T U RG I C A L C A L E N DA R May 2 Memorial of St. Athanasius, Bishop and Doctor of the Church May 3 Feast of Sts. Philip and James, Apostles May 10 The Ascension of the Lord (transferred to May 13 in some regions) May 14 Feast of St. Matthias, Apostle May 20 Pentecost Sunday May 21 Memorial of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church May 27 The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity May 31 Feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary
the Church’s very identity and mission. Relatively few Catholics reject outright the call to spread the Gospel; it’s more that they decline to participate, often because they themselves have not been evangelized and adequately catechized. This month, the Church celebrates the Solemnity of Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit came upon the Apostles. Their hearts and minds were opened so that they truly grasped who Jesus is, what he taught and what he did to save us. And they received the wisdom, strength and courage to go forth and spread the Gospel as the Lord had com-
manded. Their wholehearted witness to Jesus and their courageous preaching brought extraordinary results. Let us unite in praying earnestly for a new Pentecost in our day. And the Knights of Columbus, as the world’s largest Catholic lay organization, can and should lead the way in bearing witness to and spreading the Gospel. In the power of the Spirit, let us open our hearts to Jesus, fully live his Gospel — including those teachings that are countercultural — and speak of him in love to others, so as to win them for Christ and his Church.♦
C AT H O L I C M A N O F T H E M O N T H
Blessed Vladimir Ghika (1873-1954) THE SON OF a Romanian diplomat and the grandson of the last reigning prince of Moldavia, Vladimir Ghika was born on Christmas Day 1873 in Constantinople (present-day Istanbul). Raised Orthodox, Ghika converted to Catholicism at age 27 and earned a doctorate in theology three years later in Rome. In Romania, he founded the nation’s first free medical clinic with the Daughters of Charity of Saint Vincent de Paul and also established the first ambulance service in Bucharest. During World War I, he used his inherited wealth to aid refugees and personally tended the sick and wounded. Ordained for the Archdiocese of Paris in 1923, Father Ghika celebrated both the Latin Mass and the Byzantine-rite liturgy. A poet, playwright and spiritual writer who was proficient in more than 20 languages, he befriended such Catholic literary figures as Paul Claudel, Jacques Maritain and François Mauriac. He was sent by Pope Pius XI on a variety of missions throughout the world and, in 1933, accompanied a group of Carmelites in Tokyo to establish the first Carmel in Japan.
Msgr. Ghika returned to Romania to serve refugees flooding the country following Hitler’s invasion of Poland in 1939. During Allied bombing raids on Nazi forces in Bucharest, he refused to abandon the capital. Similarly, when the communist regime forced Romania’s king to abdicate in 1948, he refused to flee the country. As persecution intensified, Msgr. Ghika carried out his ministries with undeterred serenity and joy. “Those who love God are ready to discover new beatitudes in every situation, quite often where they are least expected,” he wrote. Arrested in 1952 for “high treason,” he was repeatedly tortured at the Jilava prison, where he died May 16, 1954, at age 80. He was beatified by Pope Francis in 2013.♦
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DURING HOLY WEEK, the Knights of Columbus transferred more than $1 million in aid to persecuted Christians in the Middle East. “As we recall the passion, death and resurrection of Jesus, it is particularly timely for us to remember and support our brothers and sisters in Christ who have, in places like Iraq and Syria, endured so much persecution for their faith,” said Supreme Knight Carl A. Anderson. “We hope that our assistance will help these communities to rise up again and rebuild.” Since 2014, the Order has committed almost $19 million to Christians and other religious minorities in the region. The latest support includes $800,000 in new financial assistance and $250,000 as part of the ongoing commitment to rebuilding Karamles,
a predominantly Christian town in the Nineveh Plain region of Iraq. Some $500,000 from the Knights will help support the food program run by the Catholic Archdiocese of Erbil, Iraq. An additional $300,000 will be sent to the Syriac Catholic Patriarchate to support its aid programs for the nearly 3,000 families from Iraq and Syria who are in great need of assistance with food, clothing, shelter, and access to education and medical care. Chaldean Archbishop Bashar Warda of Erbil said, “Our people know that without the direct support from the Knights of Columbus to Christians in the region, and without its assistance in making our case to the United States government, Christianity might already have been driven out of Iraq completely.”♦
A boy in Erbil, Iraq, carries a bag of food provided through K of C support.
Knights in the Philippines Walk for Life
Polish President Thanks Knights for Support of Hurricane Victims
Knights and family members take part in a Walk for Life in Quezon City, Luzon, Philippines, March 17. Events organized at the regional and diocesan levels brought together clergy, Knights and other pro-life witnesses to promote the dignity of life from conception to natural death. The 2018 “Walk for Life” events, which took place throughout February and March, also highlighted the call to faithful, indissoluble marriage, following the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines’ objections to a bill, currently under consideration, that would that would legalize divorce.
Polish President Andrzej Duda meets with Polish Knights of Columbus leaders and volunteers March 20. President Duda arrived in Brusy, a town in northern Poland, and thanked the Order for supporting people affected by hurricanes in the region in August 2017. Speaking with State Deputy Tomasz Wawrzkowicz (far left), President Duda expressed admiration for the Knights’ solidarity and readiness to provide long-term support. The Supreme Council donated $10,000 to assist with disaster relief efforts in Poland, which came in addition to volunteer efforts and more than $35,000 raised by Polish Knights.
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TOP: Photo by Stivan Shany/Courtesy of the Archdiocese of Erbil — BOTTOM LEFT: Photo by Roy Lagarde/Courtesy of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines
Order Provides Aid to Persecuted Christians During Holy Week
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Rebuilding the Cradle of Christianity Nebraska Knights intensify effort to help persecuted Iraqi Christians return to their ancient homeland by Mike May
Photo by Spirit Juice Studios
abriel Jabbour fled Syria in 2012 shortly before he As part of “Rebuilding the Cradle of Christianity,” the was to be executed by ISIS for being a Christian and Fort Calhoun Knights hosted a dinner with silent and refusing to convert to Islam. live auctions and featuring remarks from Syriac Catholic “A Muslim told me they were tracking me and wanted Bishop Barnaba Yousif Benham Habash, along with to come to my home to kill me, so I was forced to flee,” members of the Jabbour family. he recounted. Bishop Habash was born and raised in Iraq, where he Jabbour and his wife, Maya Tayar, eventually managed also served as a priest and bishop. Since 2010 he has led to join their daughter, Rula, in Omaha, Neb., where she the New Jersey-based Eparchy of Our Lady of Deliverance is a member of St. Robert Bellarmine Parish. for Syriac Catholics in the United States and Canada. Jabbour and Rula were featured “You know the word ‘catholic’ speakers at a “Rebuilding the Cradle means universal,” Bishop Habash of Christianity” event in Omaha said during remarks March 10. “We March 9 and 10, helping to raise cannot be for part of Christianity or awareness as well as funds for persepart of humanity. We are for all as cuted Christians in the Middle East. Jesus Christ. So the Knights of Launched by St. John the Baptist Columbus, they practice this truth Parish Council 10305 in Fort Calindeed. … When they know that houn, Neb., the event supported Christianity is persecuted, they canthe K of C effort to rebuild Karamnot be indifferent. … The Cradle of les, an ancient Iraqi town destroyed Christianity needs to be rebuilt beby ISIS, and resettle hundreds of cause the fire of persecution conChristian families there. The initiasumed this house.” tive was announced by Supreme At last year’s Supreme ConvenKnight Carl A. Anderson at the tion, Bishop Habash spoke about Supreme Convention in St. Louis the genocide and persecution of last August. Christians in Iraq and Syria. Con“This is the biggest project our rad and Hubschman were present council has ever been involved and heard his remarks, which inBishop Barnaba Yousif Benham Habash of the with,” said Grand Knight Jim Hubspired them to do something to Syriac Catholic Eparchy of Our Lady of Deschman, who coordinated the projhelp these displaced Christians and liverance of Newark delivers his homily at St. ect with Supreme Director Mike refugees. Cecilia Cathedral in Omaha, Neb., March 10. Conrad, a fellow member of the Returning to Fort Calhoun, they council. discussed with their council the “We’re very committed to helping these people who possibility of taking part in the Knights rebuilding project want to go back to their homelands,” Hubschman added. by funding construction of five homes. They quickly Karamles, southeast of Mosul, fell to ISIS in August raised $10,000, and from there, the idea blossomed into 2014. The town was liberated in late 2016, and residents the largest event the council has ever sponsored. have been gradually returning. Net earnings totaled an estimated $120,000, which is But of the town’s nearly 800 homes, 464 were burned, enough to build approximately 60 homes for Christians 97 were destroyed by bombs, and the rest were damaged living in Iraq.♦ or vandalized, according to a report by Open Doors, an international ministry serving persecuted Christians MIKE MAY writes for The Catholic Voice, newspaper of around the world. Churches and sacred images also were the Archdiocese of Omaha. He is a member of St. John destroyed or vandalized. the Baptist Parish Council 10305 in Fort Calhoun, Neb. TO
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Medal of Honor Medic An interview with Capt. Gary M. Rose about his service in the Vietnam War by Columbia staff
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Retired Capt. Gary M. Rose, a recipient of the Medal of Honor, visits the U.S. Veterans Memorial Museum in Huntsville, Ala.
Photo by Spirit Juice Studios
etired U.S. Army Capt. Gary Michael “Mike” Rose, a member of the Knights of Columbus, was recently awarded the Medal of Honor, the nation’s highest military accolade, for his bravery during the Vietnam War. Born in Watertown, N.Y., Oct. 17, 1947, Rose grew up in the Los Angeles area before enlisting in the U.S. Army in 1967. As a Green Beret medic, he was exposed to machine gun fire while treating nearly 70 wounded soldiers during Operation Tailwind, a secret mission in Laos Sept. 11-14, 1970 (see sidebar). Operation Tailwind remained classified for decades, and few details of Rose’s actions were made public. As a result, when his name was submitted for the Medal of Honor in 1970, he was passed over. Instead, he was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross in 1971. Rose continued his career in the Army, reaching the rank of Captain before retiring in 1987. He later worked as a technical consultant in the defense and automobile industries.
Today, he resides with his wife in Huntsville, Ala., where he is involved with a number of charitable organizations, including the Knights of Columbus. A past grand knight of Good Shepherd Council 11672 in Huntsville, Capt. Rose currently serves as faithful navigator of Father Jeremiah F. Trecy Assembly 0004 in Huntsville. President Donald Trump bestowed the Medal of Honor on Capt. Rose at a Oct. 23, 2017, White House ceremony in the presence of Rose’s wife, Margaret, their three children and two grandchildren, as well nine prior Medal of Honor recipients. Rose is the fourth Knight of Columbus to be awarded the Medal of Honor, following Sgt. Maj. Daniel Daly (18731937), who received the honor twice, and Rev. (Maj.) Charles J. Watters (1927-1967) and Maj. General Patrick Brady, 81, both for their service in Vietnam. Columbia recently spoke with Capt. Rose about his military service, his faith and his being a Knight. M AY 2018
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Then-Sgt. Gary M. Rose (center) is helped from a helicopter landing area after Operation Tailwind in September 1970.
COLUMBIA: So, including Operation Tailwind, you served in several different countries in the course of the war? CAPT. ROSE: All of my combat experience was in Cambodia and Laos. In Vietnam, I was never in combat but worked in the dispensary, holding sick call for Americans and for our troops and their families. We also treated indigenous personnel 10 ♦ C O L U M B I A ♦
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needing medical help — children, women, men. It was akin to working in an emergency room. At the time, there was a CIA operation going on in Laos, and they were getting their proverbial rear ends kicked. So they sent us in, and our job was to get on the ground and create some noise to pull off those troops. For the next 96 hours we had a running gun battle going on. I was seriously hit on two different days. Well, in Huntsville it would be considered a serious injury. A hole in your foot or a hole in your arm, as long as you can function with your weapon, was not considered a serious injury. There were 16 Americans, and 24 Purple Hearts were issued to those 16 Americans for those four days. COLUMBIA: You have said many times that you don’t see yourself as especially brave. Rather, in caring for other wounded soldiers even amid enemy gunfire, you were just doing your duty. CAPT. ROSE: A lot of the things that are in the citation, and some of the witness statements, I honestly don’t remember doing them. Maybe I was so focused on the wounded that I wasn’t aware of it. When you have professional soldiers, that’s what they do. We were about as well-trained as any group of
Photo courtesy of Ted Wicorek
COLUMBIA: Describe how you joined the U.S. Army and your early experience as a medic. CAPT. ROSE: When I was about 19, they were heavily drafting in the Marine Corps. My father, remembering what he went through as a private in boot camp in the Marine Corps in 1942, didn’t recommend being a draftee. So I chose to join the Army. I had been in the 7th Special Forces Group for six months at Fort Bragg when I was assigned to the 46th Company in Thailand. I worked with the border police and with the Thai Army, and I got a great amount of field experience as a medic — not combat experience, but treating diseases and injuries. And then I was transferred to MACV-SOG (Military Assistance Command, Vietnam – Studies and Observations Group, 5th Special Forces Group), which I later found out was crossborder operations in Cambodia, Laos and North Vietnam.
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men have ever been trained. It’s very similar to your police and your firemen; when everybody else is running away from the danger, they are running to it. I was not on the perimeter; I was working on the wounded and the injured. So it never occurred to me to worry about the enemy. I know that sounds ridiculous, but it’s not my function: My function is the wounded. A medic is part of the morale support system within the unit, because the others know that person’s job is their welfare. When you go into combat with people, you form a bond that’s almost unbreakable. You have the sense that you were part of something greater than yourself. What I’m proud of is the fact that I was able to do my job within my unit, and I kept faith with the men I fought with. My secret pride, if you would, is that I didn’t fail them. COLUMBIA: Describe how you were finally rescued by helicopter after four days. CAPT. ROSE: The first two ships (helicopters) took all but 35 people out, but by the time the third ship came, it had pretty much lost its engine. After we got on, a Marine was shot in the throat — I couldn’t believe it didn’t hit anything vital. Now there’s a lot of blood, and as I wrapped his neck, I knew he was going into shock. That’s when I yelled in his ear, “Listen, you stupid son of a b—, if you were going to die, you’d already be dead!” And he came out of shock. The next thing I know, the ship crashed. Though I don’t remember it, Capt. McCarley later said that I looked right at him and said, “Captain, we got to get back onto that helicopter,” which was on fire by then. So I got back up inside the helicopter and started emptying everyone out. If there hadn’t been a fourth ship, we would have been toast, because there was not a helicopter in the area large enough to extract 35 people. So we got everybody on, and we were extracted. And I will tell you this much: If it was not for the Air Force pilots and the Marine Corps Cobra pilots — they would return to base, refuel and come back out; they didn’t get any more sleep than we did — we would have not made it. We owe our lives to those air crews. COLUMBIA: You have said that God’s hand was clearly evident in your survival and that of your brother Green Berets. How aware were you of God’s presence during those harrowing days, and what role has your faith played since? CAPT. ROSE: It’s your right in this country not to believe in God, to be agnostic or atheist, but I don’t see how anybody couldn’t believe in God if you were
OPERATION TAILWIND THE NORTH VIETNAMESE Army (NVA) was funneling weapons and supplies south along the Ho Chi Minh Trail in southeastern Laos. Though Laos was neutral and off-limits to foreign troops, a Special Forces group was sent to disrupt these efforts in September 1970. The soldiers, consisting of 16 Americans and approximately 120 indigenous Montagnard personnel, were dropped by helicopter 40 miles into enemy-controlled territory. Sgt. Gary M. Rose was the lone medic among them.
DAY 1 Before the team landed, their choppers came under heavy NVA machine gun fire. After attending to the wounded on the ground, Sgt. Rose spotted a man who had been shot and was trapped outside the company’s defensive perimeter. Racing through enemy fire to reach him, he shielded the injured soldier with his body while tending his wounds. He then carried him back to safety through a hail of bullets, firing his own weapon as he went. As the company continued its mission, Sgt. Rose repeatedly moved through enemy fire to treat the mounting number of casualties. He dug foxholes for the wounded and crawled from one to another offering medical aid and encouragement throughout the night. Lt. Col. (Ret.) Eugene McCarley, who was Rose’s commanding officer, told The New York Times in a July 30, 2016 article, “The level of gallantry and disregard for his own safety that he showed — I’ve rarely seen anything like it.” DAY 2 The next day, a rocketpropelled grenade exploded near the command team, spraying
Rose with shrapnel that ripped a hole in his foot. “I remember that night taking off my boot to check it out, and my middle finger slipped all the way to my knuckle,” Rose recalled. “I pulled my hand back out and said, ‘Nah I’ll worry about that some other time.’ I never thought about it until I got back after the operation.”
DAY 3 After managing to destroy an enemy base camp, the company found itself hemmed in by more than 500 NVA. They had taken on so many wounded that a medevac helicopter was called. Rose rigged bamboo litters for the severely injured, and he stood exposed to enemy fire while attempting to pass them up to the crew on the hovering chopper. The NVA onslaught was so intense that the pilot had to abort the mission. DAY 4 With mortar rounds raining down upon the team as extraction helicopters arrived, Rose moved under enemy fire to retrieve the allied dead and wounded. He then hobbled aboard the last chopper with the remaining wounded. As they lifted off, a Marine door gunner was shot through the neck. Rose rushed to his aid and saved his life by stanching the bleeding. Just then, enemy fire hit the engines, and the aircraft soon crashed on a riverbank, ejecting men and spewing fuel. Rose crawled in and out of the wreckage until every man was safe. Upon returning to base, Rose refused treatment until the others had been tended. Thanks in part to Rose’s heroic efforts, only three men had died in the operation. M AY 2018
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with us on that day. When I think about those four days, I don’t see how you could survive something like that without Somebody deciding it was not your time to go. I got back home, and I got married and started a family and so on. As I look back over the last 47 years since that operation, I think I’ve got to be among the luckiest people who have ever been born. My wife and I are financially secure, and we have friends all over the country. I get to be involved in doing things that make at least my little part of the world a little better. I think faith sometimes comes slowly; from my childhood it was embedded in my head, and it was always in the background. When I look back, I’m convinced that the good Lord for some reason likes me. My wife is very religious, and so I think my association with her has a lot to do with it, too. I think faith gives you the subconscious and conscious tools to hopefully make good decisions about everything you do. COLUMBIA: What led you to join the Order while serving in Panama in 1973, and what kind of volunteer activities and charitable initiatives do you participate in? CAPT. ROSE: You really wanna know? OK, I was a sergeant and was driving for the group commander. Well, Sgt. Maj. Darcy was a Catholic, and he was the grand knight, and he 12 ♦ C O L U M B I A ♦
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found out that I was Catholic. He looked at me and said, “Ya oughta join the Knights of Columbus.” And if your sergeant major suggests you join the Knights of Columbus, it’s kind of like, “Where’s the form, and where do I sign?” I’m a Knight of Columbus today for several reasons. One, I am in a group of very good and generous and capable and energetic men who, on a weekly basis, constantly improve our little local community. I still look back when my kids were younger, that I could have been a little bit more tolerant, a little bit less frustrated with things — maybe not as quick to anger, if I had not gone to Vietnam. But I think the Knights have helped temper that. Being with the Knights also provides a great means of networking throughout the city of Huntsville to get things accomplished — like getting some legal help for a single mother, making sure that intellectually disabled people are being well taken care of, or making sure kids have a safe place to go on Halloween. There are so many things Knights do for so many people. And other agencies are trying to improve the lives of others, too. You build this network of goodness. Everybody is there to make things better. Our faith says, “Do unto others as you would like them to do unto you.” Why do you go out of your way to help the elderly or the intellectually disabled? Well, it goes back to “Honor thy father and mother” and serving the least of my brothers.♦
LEFT: Photo courtesy of Gary M. Rose — RIGHT: Photo by Spirit Juice Studios
U.S Army Gen. Creighton Abrams, the U.S. commander in Vietnam, awards the Distinguished Service Cross to Sgt. Gary M. Rose Jan. 16, 1971. • Rose participates in a meeting with fellow members of Council 11672 at Good Shepherd Catholic Church in Huntsville March 26.
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In Remembrance of a Life of Service A new monument honors Air Force veteran, 9/11 victim Lt. Col. Robert J. Hymel
Photo courtesy of Laughlin Air Force Base
ir Force 1st Lt. Robert J. Hymel narrowly survived Defense Intelligence Agency in 1994, the same year he the harrowing crash of his B-52 bomber in the Viet- joined the Knights of Columbus. Known for organiznam War. Three decades later, he was killed when hi- ing blood drives with his council, St. Elizabeth Ann jacked American Airlines Flight 77 crashed into his Seton Council 8183 in Lake Ridge, Va., he was cleanPentagon office Sept. 11, 2001. ing out his Pentagon office in preparation to move out The life of Hymel — a husband, father and Knight of the next day when the Sept. 11 attack took place. Columbus — was commemorated at the Jan. 30 dedi- Hymel’s body was found under a doorframe, where it cation ceremony of a new appeared he had been attower erected in his honor at tempting to rescue a coworker the entrance of his alma from the fire when the floors mater, St. Charles Catholic above them collapsed. He was High School in LaPlace, La. the only member of the Air Louis G. Authement, a memForce killed that day. ber of St. Charles Council “Nearly 29 years after being 2409 in nearby Luling, within seconds of certain launched the memorial projdeath and rescued from the ect a decade ago, after he burning wreckage of his B-52, heard the story of the heroic Robert died in the burning veteran’s life from Hymel’s wreckage of 9/11 in the role twin sister, Mary Toce. of the rescuer attempting to Hymel joined the U.S. Air save the life of another,” AuForce in 1969 and trained for thement said. “During his fucombat in single seat fighter neral at Arlington National jets before being promoted to Cemetery, a B-52 was allowed fly B-52s three years later. His to conduct a flyover for only bomber was struck by missiles the second time in the cemeduring a mission in Thailand tery’s history.” in 1972. Rather than bailing Moved to memorialize out, Hymel and his crew had Hymel’s life of service and sacattempted to fly the crippled rifice, Authement organized a plane back to base so that capital campaign that was Air Force 1st Lt. Robert Hymel stands in front of a their wounded rear gunner supported by nine local counT-38 jet at Laughlin Air Force Base in Del Rio, could receive medical care. cils, including his own, as well Texas, at the end of his pilot training in 1971. When the plane, Hymel was as the Louisiana State Council badly injured and trapped in and 14 Catholic parishes. the smoldering cockpit. He In remarks during the dediwas rescued just before the aircraft burst into flames. cation ceremony, officiated by Archbishop Gregory M. Though Patricia, Hymel’s wife, received a telegraph Aymond of New Orleans, Authement noted that each stating that her husband was not expected to live, Hymel pillar of the new Knights of Columbus Tower, as it is eventually returned home and met their daughter Na- called, bears a plaque with one of the four principles of talie, who had been born during his deployment. After the Order — charity, unity, fraternity and patriotism — a long recuperation, Hymel continued active duty in the which typified the life and legacy of Lt. Col. Hymel. Air Force, including strategic planning in the Desert “He was not just a Knight by name; he was a Knight Storm and Desert Shield campaigns in the Persian Gulf. by principles,” Authement said. “These four principles Hymel retired from the Air Force with the rank of and the legacy of Lt. Col. Hymel will forever stand tolieutenant colonel in 1993 and began work with the gether as one on this tower.”♦ M AY 2018
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KNIGHTS of the
‘GREATEST GENERATION’ Knights who served in World War II tell their stories
ore than seven decades have passed since World War II, and the “Greatest Generation” is quickly disappearing. Of the 16 million Allied servicemen from the United States and 1.1 million from Canada, nearly 450,000 lost their lives during the war. Approximately the same number remain alive today, and they are dying at about the same rate as during WWII — several hundred each day. The war itself began with Hitler’s invasion of Poland Sept. 1, 1939. Canada followed England and France into the conflict days later. The United States entered the war after the
Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor Dec. 7, 1941, casting the nation’s full weight into the war effort until the surrender of Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan in 1945. When men returned from service, most resumed civilian life, got jobs and started families. Many joined the Knights of Columbus. Their lives, and the values that defined them, still have much to teach us today. As we look forward to Memorial Day, Columbia spoke with five Knights, all in their 90s, who shared some of their recollections about their service in the military and in the Order.
Above: In this Feb. 23, 1945, file photo, U.S. Marines of the 28th Regiment, 5th Division, raise the American flag atop Mt. Suribachi, Iwo Jima, Japan. 14 ♦ C O L U M B I A ♦
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AP Photo/Joe Rosenthal, File
by Columbia staff
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Anthony J. Buccieri • Born Oct. 6, 1924
• Water tender 2nd class, U.S. Navy; served in World War II on the U.S.S. Tuscaloosa in the Atlantic, Mediterranean and Pacific; later served in the Korean War on the U.S.S. Woodworth and U.S.S. Heyliger
• Joined the Order in 1963; member of Msgr. Henry O’Carroll Council 444 in Newburgh, N.Y.; past faithful navigator of Francis J. Gorman Assembly 696 in East Orange County, N.Y. • Logged more than 15,000 hours as a volunteer at Castle Point Veterans Hospital; past commander of Catholic War Veterans in Newburgh, N.Y.; past commander of Newburgh VFW Post 1161
Photo by George Hosek
• Named to the French National Order of the Legion of Honor in 2016
RIGHT AFTER Pearl Harbor, I signed up for the Navy. I was in high school in Marlborough, N.Y., and two weeks into my junior year, I got orders to report to Newport, R.I., and then on to a diesel school in Virginia. In the fall of ’42, I got aboard the Tuscaloosa, which was a heavy cruiser, and they told us, “Your new station’s the boiler room.” We started off with the invasion of North Africa and later escorted Churchill in the Queen Mary across the Atlantic to meet with Roosevelt. We then patrolled the North Atlantic, and at one point we were 50 miles from the magnetic North Pole on a secret mission preparing for the invasion of Normandy. They set up weather stations with Norwegian troops, and that’s what delayed the invasion of Normandy by a couple of days: the weather. I also saw Eisenhower aboard ship getting ready for the invasion. On D-Day, we provided fire support for Utah Beach. I was below deck and didn’t see anything, but I could hear it,
which was worse than seeing it! We picked up survivors after a destroyer hit a sea mine, and then we headed back to England. Next was the invasion of southern France, and then to the Pacific — Iwo Jima and Okinawa, where we lost a lot of men. We also went to the Philippines after the landings to liberate the islands, and then went on to Shanghai. You talk about united people, regardless of what your race, color or creed was. It didn’t matter. We were there to win the war. There are 24 cemeteries throughout the world where our people are buried. They’re the heroes. After the war, I got married and worked in heavy construction. Teresa and I had four children. The Knights of Columbus was something in common among my close friends, and they invited me to join. And once I signed up, I was involved quite a bit. We all worked together between the Knights and the parish, and if there were any problems we could solve, we’d help solve them. M AY 2018
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Dennis J. Kenny • Born Dec. 14, 1918
• Aero engine technician in the Royal Canadian Air Force • Joined the Order in 1962; member of St. Norbert (Manitoba) Council 8557 and Archbishop Tache Assembly 369 in Winnipeg
Joseph G. Lavallee • Born Aug. 22, 1923
• Private first class, Company L, 4th Battalion, 5th Marine Corps Regiment, 1st Marine Division; served in the Pacific theater; wounded at the Battle of Cape Gloucester on the island of New Britain in Papua New Guinea
I GREW UP ON A FARM in St. Norbert, Manitoba. We were four boys and four girls in my family. Even though cash was not flowing like water, we were well-lodged, well-fed and well-loved. My parents were very religious; we said prayers every evening. When I was 18, I joined the Army, the Canadian Officer Training Corps. After the second year of university I joined the Air Force. I was a flight engineer at airfields — maintaining engines, making sure they were safe for our pilots. I spent most of my time in Gimli, Souris and Dauphin in Manitoba, and in Moosejaw, Saskatchewan, but I traveled to others across Canada. I also served on the Precision Squadron, promoting the Air Force and attending funerals. There were 1,500 who died while training to be pilots in Canada during the war; I couldn’t attend all of them but I attended quite a few. Mom was always worried that I would neglect my religion when I went in the service, but faith is essential in my life. Without it I would be lost. 16 ♦ C O L U M B I A ♦
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During the war, I went to maybe half a dozen K of C Army Huts, in towns like Winnipeg and Dauphin. They were wellloved and attended by Air Force, Army and even the Navy. They served good food and provided entertainment — you got to dance and there were different stage shows, too. I was discharged from the Air Force in May 1946 and opened a service station and repair shop called Kenny’s Garage, south of Winnipeg. In 1949, I married the love of my life, Leontine. We had six kids, and we have 16 grandkids and eight greatgrandkids. I joined the Knights of Columbus in 1962, because those guys were leaders — they would have done anything for the Church. They were a good example for me. When Pope John Paul II visited in ’84, I served as commander of the Fourth Degree honor guard. Since the war, I can say I have been happily married, raised children with guidance, love and respect. I hope I gave a good example — I did my best.
Photo by Ian McCausland Photography
• Joined the Order in 1945; past grand knight of St. Anne de Beaupre Council 3157 in Grants Pass, Ore.; past faithful navigator of Very Rev. Francis W. Black Assembly 905 in Medford, Ore., and Bishop Paul E. Waldschmidt Assembly 2437 in Grants Pass, Ore.; former district deputy
Photo by Spirit Juice Studios
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DAD AND MOTHER had a total of five boys and five girls. We grew up in Manchester, N.H., on a five-acre farm and enjoyed every moment of it. When they bombed Pearl Harbor Dec. 7, 1941, everything changed. Everybody was anxious to get in the service, and on Jan. 13, 1942, I joined the Marines. Of our five brothers, four were in the European theater; I was in the Pacific. We all came back healthy, thank God. I left Quantico, Va., for New Zealand, where we had three or four months of training. The First Marine Corps Division went to Guadalcanal, but duties kept me in New Zealand. When we landed on the island of New Britain, we encountered quite a lot of Japanese soldiers on the beach itself. During the battle, it was very scary, and a couple of my friends received bullets in the head. The bullet that killed my best friend ricocheted from my arm and got him in
between the eyes. There was nothing I could do for him. After we won that battle, they shipped us back to Australia. On New Britain, I had contracted all sorts of tropical diseases and couldn’t even walk. So, they shipped me to San Diego Naval Hospital, where I spent more than a year recovering. Being in danger the way I was got me to pray a lot more. I still have the rosary I lost in a foxhole. When the troops went ahead, I said, “I can’t leave until I get my rosary.” It’s very important to have a strong faith. After the war, some friends who were Knights of Columbus said, “Joe, you’ve got to join.” So, I’ve been a Knight since 1945. I feel it is the most important and wonderful organization for any Catholic man to be a part of, and I’ve brought in over 40 members. EDITOR’S NOTE: Lavallee ran an income tax service after the war and later worked 33 years for an aviation company in California. He is twice a widower and a father of four. M AY 2018
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Cruz C. Ortiz Sr. • Born May 3, 1920
• Corporal technician in the U.S. Army Air Forces, Company A 844, Engineer Aviation Battalion, Eighth Air Force
• Joined the Order in 1949; past grand knight of R. Conroy Scoggins Council 5678 and past faithful navigator of Msgr. George A. Wilhelm Assembly 1094, both in Houston
MY PARENTS CAME to Texas from Monterrey, Mexico, in 1911. I was born in Asa, east of Waco, and I’ve got four sisters and six brothers. My daddy used to take us to Mass, and my parents loved Our Lady of Guadalupe. My daddy also played the violin and took me one time to a Mexican fiesta in the country. All I could hear was the trumpet. So I said, “Hey, that’s the instrument I want!” From age 16, I was playing music all the time. Then I went into the Army in ’42. They sent me to Riverside, Calif., where I became a bugler, blowing that horn all day long — taps, roll call, mail call, colonel calls, you name it. We then went to England for three years, where I worked in the orderly room, delivered mail in a jeep and also brought wounded soldiers to the hospitals. I was never in combat but was in plenty of German air raids. Many of my friends got killed. While in England, we got a band got together — The Ramblin’ Wrecks, about 16 pieces. We played for troops in 18 ♦ C O L U M B I A ♦
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the mess hall, as well as for the Red Cross and on the Queen Mary. In London, we backed up Bob Hope and Dinah Shore. After the liberation of France, I played at the Eiffel Tower. From there we went to Munich, then Austria and back home. During the war, I always had a picture of Our Lady of Guadalupe in my wallet. I still carry it to this day. I was discharged Jan. 1, 1946, and got married in May. I started a band, and my wife, Faye, was our booking agent. When a church asked me to play, I never charged them. Maybe that’s why God was so good to me with the music. A couple of my brothers were already Knights and they encouraged me to join. That was in 1949, and I got really involved. I also helped out at the VA hospital, bringing people to Mass, making sure they had wheelchairs, getting telephones in every room. We had three girls and a boy, and my son later became a Knight, too.
Photo by Felix Sanchez
• VA hospital volunteer and fundraiser 1980-2004
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• Born June 1, 1920, in Warsaw, Poland
• Member of the Polish resistance Home Army (Armia Krajowa); participated in the Warsaw Uprising of 1944; sent to a German prisoner-ofwar camp
Photo by Jonathan Bielaski
• Joined Order in 1987, and has served in various officer roles for St. Maximilian Kolbe Council 9612 in Mississauga and Stefan Cardinal Wyszynski Assembly 2176 in Toronto.
I WAS WALKING about the Krakowskie Przedmiescie in 1939, and suddenly I saw an old friend of mine who asked, “Do you want to join the underground army?” I was sworn in that day. We met in secret for underground military training, and it was also my duty to recruit more soldiers to fight the Germans, who had invaded that September. In 1944, I fought in Powstanie Warszawskie, the Warsaw Uprising, which lasted 63 days. When Germans suddenly brought tanks into the city, we got the order to withdraw. Warsaw already was in ruins. There was no water and little food. With the Home Army defeated, they forced us into transports to a POW camp in Mühlberg (Stalag IV B). In 1945, the camp was liberated by the American and British armies, and we were sent to a temporary camp for all Allied POWs, in Göttingen. That’s where I met Renata, my beloved future wife. At this time, Renata and I made a difficult decision not to return to Poland, which was now under a communist regime. We heard of the Russian (NKWD) and Polish (UB/Urząd Bezpieczeństwa) communists who were persecuting Home Army soldiers.
I promised Renata that within a month we would be married in a church! And I kept my promise. We were married in a Roman Catholic Church in Porto San Giorgio, Italy. We lived in England for a few years, where many members of the Polish Armed Forces began the next chapter of their lives. In 1953, we immigrated to Canada arriving in Montreal and then moving to Toronto where I live today. Before the war, I was a film student, and once we moved to Canada I began working for many years at the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation). Later I opened my own studio. All my life I have been very close to the Roman Catholic Church. My faith helped me through the war and through my life. It’s been over 30 years since I joined the Knights of Columbus. Thanks to my late wife, Renata, I signed up one Sunday when the Knights were holding a membership drive. She said, “Bolek, join them! This is a good organization.” It was my dream to one day serve my country again. Helping establish the Order in Poland, as a member of the Polish Degree Team, I accomplished that.♦ M AY 2018
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Accomplished A young Knight accompanies a relic of St. Francis Xavier on a historic pilgrimage across Canada by Deborah Gyapong 20 â™Ś C O L U M B I A â™Ś
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OPPOSITE PAGE: Photo by Christian Fleury — RIGHT: Photo by Jake Wright
t’s not every day that the arm of a saint who baptized hundreds of thousands of people comes to town. A first-class relic of St. Francis Xavier, which seldom leaves the Church of the Gesù in Rome, made an unprecedented coast-to-coast Canadian tour earlier this year in the care of D’Arcy Murphy, a young Knight from Ontario. “St. Francis Xavier may have died 465 years ago, but he’s been on mission in Canada this last month,” said Murphy at the conclusion of the pilgrimage. A striking young man, standing tall at 6’4”, Murphy is a student at the University of Ottawa and a member of Mary Mother of God Council 14446 in Oakville. Last fall, when asked to serve as the “guardian of the relic,” he did not hesitate. “My knee-jerk response was to say ‘yes’ right away, even though the implications were huge,” he said. “It meant taking off a semester from school; it meant really making a major sacrifice and trusting in the Lord that this was where he wanted me to be.” Murphy found it inspiring that St. Francis Xavier (1506-1552), one of the founders of the Society of Jesus, experienced a religious conversion as a university student and ultimately became the patron saint of missionaries (see sidebar). The Dec. 26-Feb. 3 pilgrimage of his most well-known relic was co-sponsored by the Archdiocese of Ottawa, the Jesuits of Canada and Catholic Christian Outreach (CCO), a national university student movement. The journey took Murphy and his precious cargo to 15 cities, where some 80,000 people venerated the relic, astonishing local organizers. “This was crazy, to travel across Canada with a 465-year-old arm,” Murphy said. “No one has had this experience. To be a student entrusted with caring for this relic — what a gift, what a privilege!” ‘ARM GUARD’ OF THE SAINT D’Arcy Murphy is an only child, born April 18, 1998, and the Catholic faith has always been an important part of his life. His mother is active in their parish and his father, a past grand knight of Toronto Council 1388, is now a member of Council 14446. In his teens, Murphy was a Columbian Squire and attended Catholic youth conferences. After graduating from high school in 2016, he went to World Youth Day in Poland shortly before beginning studies at the University of Ottawa. “University was a place that I knew would not be the most welcoming of my faith,” Murphy said. “I knew it would be a test.”
D’Arcy Murphy, a member of Mary Mother of God Council 14446 in Oakville, Ontario, stands with the arm relic of St. Francis Xavier in Montreal’s Mary, Queen of the World Cathedral.
ST. FRANCIS XAVIER, PATRON SAINT OF MISSIONARIES
MOST ROOMMATES are doing well if they can manage a shared chore schedule. Three young men at the University of Paris in the 1500s set the bar much higher. Their friendship resulted in the founding of a religious order, and it led one to become one of the greatest Christian missionaries since St. Paul. St. Francis Xavier was born April 7, 1506, in the Kingdom of Navarre, present-day Spain. At age 23, he began studies in Paris, where he lived with St. Peter Faber and St. Ignatius of Loyola. Francis was an aristocrat and an accomplished athlete who enjoyed dancing and dining. “At first, St. Francis didn’t want anything to do with his super-spiritual roommates,” noted D’Arcy Murphy, a 20year-old student at the University of Ottawa and a member of the Knights of Columbus. However, Francis’ association with the men led to a spiritual conversion, and after Ignatius guided him through the Spiritual Exercises and shared his vision for the Society of Jesus, Francis joined them as one of the founding Jesuits. “He was living an extraordinary adventure, a fun-loving, joyful man, but it came to a whole new level with Christ,”
said Murphy. Francis Xavier and his roommates, together with several other companions, pronounced vows of poverty, chastity and obedience in 1534. They were ordained three years later. In 1541, the year after Pope Paul III formally approved the formation of the Society of Jesus, Francis was sent by Ignatius, now his religious superior, on a missionary journey from Lisbon, Portugal, to Goa in western India. After three years evangelizing there, he continued his mission to Ceylon, Malacca, the Maluku Islands in the Pacific, and Japan. Seeking to bring the Gospel to China, he fell ill and died on an island off the coast in 1552. St. Francis Xavier founded flourishing churches and baptized hundreds of thousands of people during his decade of missionary work. In 1614, his arm was brought from the Basilica of Bom Jesus in Goa to the Gesù, the mother church of the Society of Jesus in Rome, where it is housed in a side altar facing the tomb of his old roommate, St. Ignatius Loyola. Francis Xavier and Ignatius were canonized together in 1622, and Pope Pius XI declared St. Francis Xavier patron of Catholic missions in 1927.♦ M AY 2018
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At the beginning of his first semester, he encountered CCO and took part in their Discovery Faith Study program, which he called “life-changing.” “I really came to understand the importance and beauty of having a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, and that was the heart of my Catholic identity,” he explained.
CATHOLIC CHRISTIAN OUTREACH FORMS MISSIONARY DISCIPLES RESPONDING TO St. John Paul II’s call for a new evangelization, André and Angèle Regnier founded Catholic Christian Outreach (CCO) at the University of Saskatchewan in 1988. Now based in Ottawa, the organization brings the Gospel to thousands of university students across Canada with the help of more than 80 full-time lay missionaries. CCO is focused on three pillars of evangelization — to proclaim, equip and commission — and engages students through faith studies, retreats, mission trip opportunities and personal discipleship. For the past 10 years, the Knights of Columbus has been a sponsor of the organization’s Rise Up conference, which brings together young leaders from across the nation for four days during winter break. André Regnier is a longtime member of Centennial Council 8008 in Ottawa, and CCO’s current president Jeff Lockert is a member of Divine Infant Council 7873 in neighboring Orleans. For more information about CCO and its mission, visit cco.ca.♦ 22 ♦ C O L U M B I A ♦
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HEALING AND RENEWAL The relic’s tour began Dec. 30, 2017, in Ottawa at CCO’s annual Rise Up conference, where almost 1,000 young people had the opportunity to venerate it. The tour primarily consisted of locations where there was either a CCO or Jesuit presence. The organizers were asking for three specific graces: conversion of heart, the creation of missionary disciples, and healing. “Every single place we’ve gone to has underestimated the crowd,” said Angèle Regnier. “Whatever the local people told us, we just put a zero after it.” The crowds posed challenges sometimes, leaving venues without enough volunteers, sufficient food and water, or even enough Communion hosts to accommodate the number of people at Mass, Regnier said. She compared the experience to the Gospel account of nets tearing from catching such a great number of fish (cf. Luke 5:6). “St. Francis has been on a mission in Canada for sure,” she said. Murphy traveled with the relic next to him on its own seat in planes and kept it with him in his room at night, usually in a rectory. He wore white gloves when lifting or carrying the relic in its glass container. He stood by during veneration and kept
Photos by Jake Wright
Nic Baker, a member of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal Council 12401 in Russell, Ontario, venerates the relic with his wife, Meghann, and their five children.
In February 2017, Murphy went on a CCO mission to Ireland, and by last October, he had led three Discovery Faith Studies himself. “It’s been a real joy to share the Gospel in a clear and simple way with my peers, my friends, even my roommates,” he said. When the relic pilgrimage was announced Oct. 18, CCO co-founder Angèle Regnier asked Murphy if he would accompany the relic as its “guardian.” “What was really exciting was that, without me even realizing the arm was coming, the Lord was preparing my heart and mind to say ‘yes,’ to follow him, abandoned to his will,” Murphy said. “I didn’t know why the Lord was preparing me, but when Angèle asked me, I knew this was it.” Regnier credits Ottawa Archbishop Terrence Prendergast, S.J., with first suggesting the idea of bringing the relic to Canada more than five years ago. Regnier and her husband, André, who is CCO’s co-founder and a member of Centennial Council 8008 in Ottawa, had accompanied the archbishop to the Church of the Gesù in Rome. There, in the mother church of the Jesuit order, the arm of St. Francis Xavier is usually displayed at a side altar, opposite one housing the remains of St. Ignatius Loyola. “St. Francis Xavier is one of our patron saints, so Archbishop Prendergast suggested we ask for the relic,” Angèle recalled. “Francis’ life resonates with young people, who admire his story of conversion.” As Canada’s 150th anniversary approached, Archbishop Prendergast assisted with obtaining permission from the rector of the Gesù as well as from governmental authorities in Italy, ensuring protection for the priceless relic during the pilgrimage.
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Visitors to Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica in Ottawa approach the relic of St. Francis Xavier as the pilgrimage draws to a close Feb. 2. the reliquary clean of fingerprints after it was touched or kissed by thousands. When not on display, the relic stayed in a black protective case. On a typical day, the team would start early in the morning, with veneration at the local cathedral or a parish the diocese selected. Often, they visited several different venues in one city. “Pilgrims came in all day long.” Murphy said, noting that Masses were standing-room only. “We saw people coming in huge numbers. The Church is alive in Canada.” Some visitors experienced physical and emotional healing, and bishops and priests found their faith and hope rejuvenated through seeing the response to the relic. “Everyone had an individual story, but each person was touched,” Murphy said. He also drew an analogy between the popularity of the relic and that of the Stanley Cup. “When the Stanley Cup is in the Hockey Hall of Fame, people come from far and wide to see it. They want to be with the real Stanley Cup,” he said. “It’s the same with a relic. It’s one thing to think about a saint, but it’s another to have a physical encounter with the arm that baptized tens of thousands. It reveals a deeper spiritual reality, that the saints are alive in heaven and continue to pray for us.” WITNESS TO THE HOLY The pilgrimage ended in Ottawa at Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica on Feb. 2, the feast of the Presentation. For hours before and after a packed Mass, throngs lined up to venerate the saint’s relic. Nic Baker, who studied to be a Protestant youth pastor before his conversion to the Catholic faith 12 years ago, has long been skeptical about relics but agreed to visit the cathedral with his wife, Meghann, a cradle Catholic and CCO alumna. “My wife, growing up Catholic, has more of an appreciation
and understanding of relics than I did,” said Baker, who is a member of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal Council 12401 in Russell, Ontario. Baker and his wife later returned to the cathedral to venerate the relic with their five children, ages 10, 8, 6, 4, and 6 months. “My children said, ‘It’s like St Francis Xavier traveled here to come see us,’” Baker said. “It was the highlight of their week.” Seeing how the experience affected his family helped Baker understand the communion of saints better and become a “witness to something holy,” he said. In his homily, Archbishop Prendergast said, “By his life and zeal to proclaim the Gospel to the ends of the earth, Xavier challenges us to do the same today, to become what Pope Francis challenges us to be: missionary disciples who learn from Christ each day.” On Feb. 3, Murphy, the archbishop and the Regniers traveled to Rome to return the relic. Archbishop Prendergast celebrated a Mass of Thanksgiving at the Church of the Gesù Feb. 4, and St. Francis Xavier’s arm was restored to its permanent place in the side altar the next day. While in Rome, the team met briefly with Pope Francis and gave him a framed photograph from the pilgrimage. Now that he’s back in Canada, Murphy is working out of CCO’s head office in Ottawa until he can resume his studies in international development and globalization at the University of Ottawa next fall. “I have been blown away. It’s hard to put into words,” said Murphy, reflecting on the pilgrimage. “It will take years and years of my life to actually process everything, to understand all of these graces the Lord has been pouring out.”♦ DEBORAH GYAPONG is a freelance journalist based in Ottawa, Canada. M AY 2018
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A Celebration of Mary, Mother of the Church The Church’s Marian identity will be honored in a new feast day, on the Monday after Pentecost by Sean Innerst n 1974, I was received into the Catholic Church. I was a freshman in college and ready to believe everything that the Church taught. However, I remained a little ambivalent about Mary, afraid that she might be a distraction from my growing love for Jesus. I didn’t quite understand where she fit in. A few years later, I was leaving Mass and passed in front of the statue of Mary in my parish church. The building had been renovated some time earlier to look very simple, all in oak. Two hand-carved statues of Mary and Joseph melted into the interior and were barely noticeable. But as I left the church that day, I was struck by the beauty of that statue of Our Lady. It had always just been furniture to me before, but suddenly, I was drawn to her. I marveled at how the oak of Mary’s face was actually one with the wooden interior of the entire church — that they were really, mysteriously united. To my surprise, love welled up in my heart for this woman in wood. This experience came to mind when, on the feast of Our Lady of Lourdes (Feb. 11), it was announced that Pope Francis had established a new Marian feast day on the Monday after Pentecost. The Memorial of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church, will be celebrated for the first time this year, on May 21. A Feb. 11 statement by the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments noted that Pope Francis “attentively considered how greatly the promotion of this devotion might encour-
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age the growth of the maternal sense of the Church in the pastors, religious and faithful, as well as a growth of genuine Marian piety.” This dual purpose of the new feast — to promote greater appreciation of Marian piety and of the Church as Mother — can be better understood if we take a step back and look at the history of Marian devotion since Vatican II. RECOVERING DEVOTION The fathers of the Second Vatican Council (19621965) had considered issuing a separate document on the Blessed Virgin Mary, and there was even a move to ask Blessed Pope Paul VI to define a new Marian dogma. Instead, they spoke about Mary in the eighth and final chapter of Lumen Gentium, the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, which they titled “The Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God in the Mystery of Christ and the Church.” Then, at the end of the last session of the council, Pope Paul VI made a solemn proclamation of Mary as “Mother of the Church,” the very title that Francis has now reaffirmed.
A replica of the Mater Ecclesiae (Mother of the Church) mosaic that overlooks St. Peter’s Square is displayed in permanent exhibit at the Saint John Paul II National Shrine in Washington, D.C. The mosaic includes John Paul II’s coat of arms and apostolic motto, “Totus Tuus” (Totally Yours).
Mosaic created by Vatican Mosaic Studio/Photo by Matthew Barrick
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Despite the extremely rich content of Lumen Gentium’s treatment of Mary’s place within the context of the Church, the theological climate after the council tended to downplay the importance of Marian piety. Paul VI addressed this nearly 10 years after the council in an apostolic exhortation, Marialis Cultus, in which he noted two errors: Devotions of piety should not be inserted into the Mass, but neither should they be scorned and suppressed (31). I remember this period very well, as Marialis Cultus was published in 1974, the same year that I became Catholic. Many of the priests and religious who helped me to enter the Church seemed to share my ambivalence toward Mary at the time, so I set Our Lady off to the side. Nonetheless, as I combed the Catholic section of the university library, I kept reading about Mary and devotions like the scapular and rosary, which seemed to have played such an important role in the lives of the saints. All this “Catholic stuff ” was new to me and terribly fascinating, so I furtively taught myself how to 26 ♦ C O L U M B I A ♦
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say the rosary. However, I still didn’t quite get how Mary figured in the Christian life until a few years later when I met a Discalced Carmelite priest who had deep Marian devotion. As I spoke with him about my questions, he smiled and made one very simple suggestion: “Ask Jesus to introduce you to his mother.” What perfect advice for a former Protestant! Of course, Jesus was the one to help me understand Mary. I obediently made that request in prayer and returned home, not thinking much more about it. It was a few days later that I was struck by the wooden statue of Mary at my parish. Only afterward, as I reflected on that moment while praying the rosary, did I remember asking Jesus to introduce me to his mother. I then realized that Jesus had answered my prayer. In so doing, he set my faith on a life-changing course. From that day, much that had been opaque to me became clearer; moral struggles that had seemed insurmountable became easier; and I saw myself not merely as a disciple of Jesus but a son in the Son. In Mary, I discovered the love that a perfect Son has for
The descent of the Holy Spirit upon Mary and the Apostles at Pentecost is illustrated in a 6th-century Syriac manuscript known as the Rabbula Gospels.
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his mother, and the love that she has for her Son. My walk in faith has since been colored by the love of those two hearts and the remarkable way that a Catholic life can be lived out in that shared love. Furthermore, I came to understand that there is a mystical identity between Mary and the Church. We do not offer Mary the worship that is owed to God, but rather the Church strives to be Marian in offering God the worship we owe to him.
Luke 1:46-55. She is the woman who remembers the covenant promises and realizes them with her “yes.” Mary is the woman who hopes, who believes and who loves (Deus Caritas Est, 41). She is also our “Mother of hope” (Spe Salve, 50) and reminds us of the central acts which constitute the Church: liturgical remembrance and worship, to which the Church must attend in order for her to carry out the works of love in truth (Caritas in Veritate). Finally, Pope Francis, in Evangelii Gaudium (The AN ‘ECCLESIAL RENEWAL’ Joy of the Gospel), returns to a call for ecclesial selfThe popes in recent decades have shepherded a re- reflection. He quotes Paul VI’s assertion that “vivid vival of Marian piety, each in a particular way that and lively self-awareness inevitably leads to a comindicates just how much the face of Mary is one with parison between the ideal image of the Church as the whole fabric of the Church’s life. It is easy to Christ envisaged her … and the actual image which oversimplify the rich teachings of recent popes as to the Church presents to the world today” (26). the important place of Mary in the Church, but Through this interior gaze on the part of the each, in his own way, has prepared for the institution Church, Francis hopes for an “ecclesial renewal” of this new Marian memorial. characterized not by self-critical introversion but by St. John Paul II directed the Church’s attention “a missionary impulse” (27). toward the Redeemer of Man, the very title of the He goes on to write, “With the Holy Spirit, Mary first encyclical of his long pontificate. For this pro- is always present in the midst of the people. She foundly Marian pope, Mary joined the disciples in praying was primarily Redemptoris for the coming of the Holy Mater, the Mother of the ReSpirit (Acts 1:14) and thus deemer. In his 1990 encyclimade possible the missionary cal of that name, she is the outburst which took place at HE CHURCH STRIVES woman of faith, the first to Pentecost. She is the Mother TO BE MARIAN IN believe in the mystery of of the Church which evangelChrist, as recorded in the izes, and without her we OFFERING GOD THE words of Luke 1:45: “Blessed could never truly understand are you who believed.” She is the spirit of the new evangeWORSHIP WE OWE TO not self-concerned, but enlization” (284). tirely Christ-centered. In this light, it is not surHIM. As then-Cardinal Joseph prising that Francis, harkenRatzinger, prefect of the Coning back Pope Paul VI’s gregation for the Doctrine of declaration at the end of the the Faith had put it, through Second Vatican Council, has her constant “maternal mediation,” the Church can established the new memorial of the Blessed Virgin learn not to “speak too much of herself ” but instead Mary, Mother of the Church. focus on the Redeemer and his mission. Just as the Holy Spirit hovered over the Daughter In various works before and after becoming Pope Zion and caused Christ to find a home under the Benedict XVI in 2005, he noted that Mary at the heart of Mary at the Annunciation, he also caused the Annunciation is addressed by the angel Gabriel in Body of Christ, the Church, to be born around the terms that parallel prophecies from the Old Testa- heart of Mary at Pentecost. This coming May 21 and ment, particularly Zephaniah 3:14-15 and Zechariah every Monday following Pentecost in the years to 9:9. These prophecies foretell the joyful announce- come, may the Holy Spirit find us gathered faithfully ment of the coming of Messiah to “Daughter Zion,” around Our Lady and waiting eagerly for his coming and the promise that God would be “in the midst of to bring us to rebirth as the Mystical Body of Christ.♦ you” (literally “in your womb”). Zion is the mount in Jerusalem on which the Temple was located, the SEAN INNERST is director of the Theology Cycle place from which the sublime worship of the one at St. John Vianney Theological Seminary and a cotrue God went up to heaven. founder and professor at the Augustine Institute in For Benedict XVI, Mary is the woman of Zion and Denver. He is a member of Holy Name Council of the Magnificat, the canticle of praise she utters in 8539 in Sheridan, Colo.
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KNI GHTS IN ACTION
REPORTS FROM COUNCILS, ASSEMBLIES AND COLUMBIAN SQUIRES CIRCLES HOSPITALITY
Ancienne-Lorette (Québec) Council 4246 used its monthly luncheon to raise funds for a Syrian family hosted by the parish of Our Lady of the Annunciation. GROCERIES IN THE BAG
Chaplain Father Mike Yadron and members of Monsignor Robert B. Weis Council 10596 in Munster, Ind., stand with a new sign for the Gabriel Project, a pro-life ministry that offers immediate, practical help to women experiencing difficult pregnancies. When the ministry’s old sign became illegible, Council 10596 donated a new one to publicize the support resources available and the St. Thomas More Church community’s commitment to the sanctity of human life.
A PLACE FOR PILGRIMS
St. Anthony of Padua Council 15465 of Calbayog City, Visayas, completed construction of an altar and a shelter for pilgrims at Calvary Hill, a regional pilgrimage site where the faithful gather during Holy Week. The council also makes breakfast available to the crowds of pilgrims each year. BEST FOOT FORWARD
St. Joseph on the Brandywine Council 15436 in Greenville, Del., held its first shoe drive. More than 2,775 pairs of gently used and new shoes were shipped to benefit families in Haiti. The shoe drive generated over $1,000 in funds that will be used to support the parish, local community service projects and charitable activities.
an automated external defibrillator. The council received the machine from the American Red Cross as a thanks for its contributions. Now, the Knights are equipped to respond to potential medical emergencies.
VISIT THE IMPRISONED
To celebrate the feast of San Lorenzo Ruiz of Manila, Pulilan Council 6105 in Bu-
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Cargill Council 64 in Putnam, Conn., supports its parish by managing concessions every year for the annual festival at St. Mary Church of the Visitation.
Members of St. Thomas More Council 13987 in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, served as backup singers for Father Toochukwu Okafor, their state chaplain. The council helped arrange an evening of song and dance, raising funds toward the establishment of a clinic in Father Okafor’s hometown in Nigeria. The full house of attendees enjoyed an array of tunes, including Father Okafor’s compositions I Love Nova Scotia and Father McGivney Song.
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lacan, Luzon North, took part in a procession and visit to the local jail. In collaboration with San Isidro Labrador Parish, detainees were treated with lunch and given personal hygiene materials.
Mid-Columbia Council 7292 in Hood River, Ore., assisted FISH Food Bank in preparing grocery bags for use by its clients. Offering the bags to clients is a significant operational expense for the food bank, so the council contributed $1,200 for the purchase of 12,000 bags — a six-month supply. Knights also volunteer at the food bank year-round.
Schoolchildren try out their new raincoats, a gift from Las Pinas (Luzon South) Council 7618. The council distributed the raincoats at Moonwalk Elementary School and its annexes Mikesell Elementary School and Golden Acre Elementary School. The coats will help protect the children’s health during the rainy season.
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K N I G H T S I N AC T I O N SIGNS OF THE TIMES
St. James Council 7896 in Forest City, Iowa, mounted a pro-life sign to a new framework constructed by five Knights. Two back-toback signs were installed on US Highway 69 and blessed by the council chaplain.
John Cardinal Newman Council 11323 at Virginia Tech University held an original fundraiser: For every $100 donated toward the K of C Christian Refugee Relief Fund, a Knight received a tonsure, commonly known as a “monk haircut,” with the goal of raising $1,000 and tonsuring their beloved campus chaplain. Drawing attendance from a Catholic student reunion and extending the amount of time Knights kept the haircut, the council surpassed its goal and raised $2,135 for persecuted Christians.
Prayerful participants with glow sticks made up a living rosary at an event sponsored by Transfiguration Council 13713 in Blythewood, S.C. Sixty people participated in the rosary, which was preceded by a dinner provided by the council.
Members of Good Shepherd Council 6358 in Schertz, Texas, make a trek along Roy Richard Drive while participating in the Adopt-A-Highway program of the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT). Knights collected 16 bags of trash and debris from a 1-mile stretch of road.
Marbel Council 7658 in Koronadal City, Mindanao, celebrated the feast of St. Anthony of Padua by supplying notebooks, pens, pencils, crayons, writing pads, coloring books and more for 200 students — as well as a free lunch.
The activity benefitted 575 parishioners who availed themselves of inexpensive medical laboratory tests. The council provided 1,545 manhours of community service in addition to subsidizing the free medical examination of the parish’s priests, employees and volunteers.
GOOD AS NEW
Doug Zima of Onawa-Blencoe (Iowa) Council 6249 washes dishes while also holding his grandson at the council’s chicken dinner fundraiser, which supported local organizations serving expectant mothers, persons with intellectual disabilities and others in need. Council 6249 also operated its food stand at an annual fundraiser supporting the Burgess Health Center, which provides medical care in the Onawa area. Knights served sweet rolls, coffee and beverages in the early morning and a lunch fare of burgers, hot dogs, taverns (aka sloppy joes), nacho grandes and beverages. The council then presented a check for a large portion of their net proceeds to the event chairperson to support local medical access.
A Marian grotto, renovated by Albert Doerr Council 7869 in Remus, Mich., was dedicated at a special Mass. Winter weather had eroded much of the grotto’s grout, so the council powerwashed the stones, helped replace the grout, repaired the votive stand and beautified the fountain in ways that will help protect it from further weather damage. MEDICAL MISSION
Our Lady of Fatima Council 9636 in Las Pinas, Metro Manila, Luzon South, conducted an advanced ECG examination as part of its biannual Watch-Your-Health project, a 30-year community initiative of the council.
Oscar Patino and Danny Noriega of Father Bach-Bro. Angel de Santa Cruz Council 14139 in Tucson, Ariz., accompany a student through a department store. Knights volunteered during a program that provides children in need with $100 for backto-school purchases.
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K N I G H T S I N AC T I O N
dinner to support veterans groups. This year’s fundraiser benefited the VFW Veterans and Military Support Program to the amount of $3,039. Over the past three years, the council has donated more than $6,250 to veteran programs. MARY, PRAY FOR US
St. Patrick’s Council 8178 in Monona, Iowa, and St. Mary’s Catholic Church erected a statue of the Blessed Virgin at St. Mary’s Cemetery in commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the apparitions at Fatima. Members of Rev. Msgr. Robert C. Pollock Assembly 3586 in Bountiful, Utah, prep a meal for veterans and the families of veterans staying at the Fisher House near the Utah VA hospital. The Knights also stayed to visit with the veterans and families, who were very appreciative of the hot meal and Knights’ presence.
Mary Queen of Peace Council 12072 in Mandeville, La., held a Shrimp Boil to help in the rebuilding of St. Joseph Abbey, which was damaged during the flooding of 2016. An estimated 500 shrimp plates — one pound of shrimp, two potatoes and corn — were sold for $10 each in front of Mary Queen of Peace Church. COMMUNITY SUPPORT
St. Charles Borromeo Council 13513 in Jacksonville, Ala., collected more than $1,100 to support the East Central Alabama United Cerebral Palsy telethon. The telethon funds the care of local children and adults diagnosed with cerebral palsy and other developmental delays. PARISH ROSARY
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of St. Francis de Sales Church. Parishioners have enjoyed the outdoor rosary so much that the council has begun to also host outdoor 4th Sunday rosaries in the warm months. The council also sponsored two parish youth attending a Catholic gathering in Steubenville, Ohio.
RETREAT TO ADVANCE
St. Matthew Council 9534 in Surrey, British Columbia, welcomed 90 men to a Saturday retreat that featured talks on raising Catholic families, growing closer to God as spiritual father, and more. Retreatants also attended Mass, prayed, sang and enjoyed several meals together.
DECADES OF SUPPORT
Pope John XXIII Council 5495 in Burien, Wa., held its 43rd annual baby shower supporting the Pregnancy Aid office of South King County. The council collected clothing and cash donations from parishioners and made an additional $1,000 donation to support the pro-life ministry.
More than 10 years ago, L. W. MacKenna Assembly 2043 and Msgr. Charles King Council 4771, both in Denton, Texas, decided to establish a pro-life Holy Hour of adoration. The Knights started this ministry to ask Jesus to encourage couples to choose life and not consider an alternative solution. The ministry expanded to include the support of parishioners at Immaculate Conception Church. All gather weekly on Thursday evenings to support this ministry and hope that one day soon it will no longer be needed.
A GOOD DAY
San Antonio (Fla.) Council 1768 and Father Robert Rittmeyer Council 10671 in Zephyrhills teamed up to support Catholic Charities and the St. Andreas Free Clinic. The Knights provided 250 backpacks for children; they also cooked and served food and drinks to clients who came for free physicals, dental exams and pro-life resources. VETERAN SUPPORT
St. Mary’s Council 2346 in Nutley, N.J., hosted the third annual O. Allen Beyer Memorial “German Knight”
Members of ICC Gensanville Council 14286 in General Santos City, Mindanao, set to work repainting the grills of Immaculate Conception Chapel. The repainting took place during the council’s cleanup day at the chapel, which was followed by a meal together.
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K N I G H T S I N AC T I O N COOL IT
After the AC unit for the Our Lady of Guadalupe Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration Chapel at the Catholic Church of the Ascension failed during a heat wave, Ascension Community Council 15936 in Memphis, Tenn., donated $300, profits from its monthly pancake breakfast, toward the purchase of a replacement.
as security systems and handicap accessible computers. ALTAR SERVER APPRECIATION
Holy Cross Council 8509 in Kernersville, N.C., welcomed 25 young altar servers to a bowling party to thank them for their dedication and service to the parish. The youth enjoyed two games of bowling and refreshments.
Msgr. Timothy F. Doody Council 9696 in Lowell, Ind., assisted a Missionaries of Charity community by removing old flooring in their building. Knights from other local councils and assemblies also assisted with the project, which saved some $10,000 in demolition costs.
PRAYER FOR THE SUFFERING
Father Charles Griffin Council 15793 in Chillicothe, Ohio, joined by parishioners, conducted a public recitation of the Glorious Mysteries of the rosary at St. Peter Church. The rosary was dedicated to those affected by addictions, especially those related to drugs.
Richard Cardinal Cushing Assembly 484 in Roseville, Mich., raised $5,000 for Help for Our Disabled Troops, an organization that serves veterans with severe handicaps by providing housing and equipment such
TREE AND DEBRIS
In the aftermath of a tornado, Resurrection Council 15834 in Tulsa, Okla., cleared a 30-foot-plus willow tree and debris from the grounds of the Church of the Resurrection. The
Young volunteers assist at a Catholic Charities, Diocese of Joliet mobile pantry stop at St. Patrick’s Church. Holy Trinity Council 4400 in Joliet, Ill., sponsored the stop, where food was served to 120 families. Additionally, the council donated items to St. Patrick's Food Pantry and the Daybreak Center. Proceeds for the donation, which makes up the council’s second mobile food pantry sponsorship, came from their annual golf outing.
council cut the tree into portable pieces and repaired damaged fences. With the tree removed, it became clear that roots and other detritus were causing flooding in the sanctuary and parking lot. Many Knights worked to clear up this problem as well. PARISH PROJECT
George J. McCarthy Council 2975 in Grand Haven, Mich., helped St. Mary’s Parish in Spring Lake distribute 5,000 pounds of food when the parish hosted a Feeding America mobile pantry truck. Working with family members and other volunteers, the council distributed food to more than 50 families. ULTRASOUND SUCCESS
Christian Perrault (left) and Guy St-Denis of Cheney-Hammond (Ontario) Council 8242 stand with firewood the council cut to a manageable size for an 82-year-old gentleman in the community. The wood will help the man heat his home.
Father Joseph Saffer Council 6897 in Murray, Ky., raised $40,000 toward an ultrasound machine for Life House of Murray/Calloway County, providing a service for abortion-vulnerable
women that was previously unavailable in the area. The council also supports St. Leo Parish of Calloway, Need Line and Food Pantry, Angel’s Attic, Angel’s Clinic and other charitable organizations. BEST FLOOR FORWARD
Commodore Barry Council 883 in Pittsburg, Kan., serves monthly at the Lord’s Diner, a free meal ministry of the Diocese of Wichita. In addition to cooking and serving, council members go the extra mile and stay late to clean and buff the diner’s floors.
kofc.org exclusive See more “Knights in Action” reports and photos at www.kofc.org/ knightsinaction
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VALUATION EXHIBIT OF
THE KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS
P RO M OT I O NA L & G I F T I T E M S
In compliance with the requirements of the laws of the various states, we publish below a Valuation Exhibit of the Knights of Columbus as of Dec. 31, 2017. The law requires that this publication shall be made of the results of the valuation with explanation as filed with the insurance departments.
ASSETS — Actual and Contingent 1. Admitted Assets of the General Account Fund, item 26, page 2 of Annual Statement: $24,953,723,637
LIABILITIES — Actual and Contingent 2. Old System Reserve — including additional reserve: $ 41,776 3. New System Reserve — including D.I. and Dis. W. (net of reins): $ 13,927,412,506 4. Reserve for accident and health certificates: $ 522,819,802 5. Total per item 1 and 2, page 3 of Annual Statement: $ 14,450,274,084 6. Deduct liens and interest thereon, not included in Admitted Assets, and not in excess of required reserves on the corresponding individual certificates: None 7. Balance — Item 5 less item 6 above: $ 14,450,274,084 8. Liabilities of the General Account Fund, except reserve (items 3 to 22 incl. page 3 of Annual Statement): $ 8,367,582,324 9. Liabilities — Actual and Contingent — sum of items 7 and 8 above: $22,817,856,408 10. Ratio percent of Dec. 31, 2017 — 109.36% Assets — Actual and Dec. 31, 2016 — 108.98% Contingent (Item 1) Dec. 31, 2015 — 109.03% to liabilities — Actual Dec. 31, 2014 — 109.70% and Contingent (Item 9) Dec. 31, 2013 — 110.25%
EXPLANATION The above valuation indicates that, on a basis of the A.E., A.M. (5), 1941 C.S.O., 1958 C.S.O., 1980 C.S.O., 2001 C.S.O., 2017 C.S.O., 1937 S.A., 1971 Individual Annuity Table, Annuity 2000 Table, 2012 IAR – S G2 table and 1983 “a” Tables of Mortality with interest at 9%, 8.75%, 8%, 7%, 6%, 5%, 4.5%, 4%, 3.75%, 3.5%, 3%, 2.5%, the future assessments of the society, at the net rate now being collected, together with the now invested assets of the General Account Fund are sufficient to meet all certificates as they mature by their terms, with a margin of safety of $2,135,867,229 (or 9.36%) over the above statutory standards. STATE OF: Connecticut COUNTY OF: New Haven The officers of this reporting entity, being duly sworn, each depose and say that they are the described officers of the said reporting entity, and that on the reporting period stated above, all of the herein described assets were the absolute property of the said reporting entity, free and clear from any liens or claims thereon, except as herein stated, and that this statement, together with related exhibits, schedules and explanations therein contained, annexed or referred to, is a full and true statement of all the assets and liabilities and of the condition and affairs of the said reporting entity as of the reporting period stated above, and of its income and deductions therefrom for the period ended, and have been completed in accordance with the NAIC annual statement instructions and accounting practices and procedure manual except to the extent that: (1) state law may differ; or, (2) that state rules or regulations require differences in reporting not related to accounting practices and procedures, according to the best of their information, knowledge and belief, respectively. Furthermore, the scope of this attestation by the described officers also includes the related corresponding electronic filing with the NAIC, when required, that is an exact copy (except for formatting differences due to electronic filing) of the enclosed statement. The electronic filing may be requested by various regulators in lieu of or in addition to the enclosed statement. Subscribed and sworn to before me this 16th day of February 2018. JINA JO HANSEN, Notary Public CARL A. ANDERSON, President MICHAEL J. O’CONNOR., Secretary RONALD F. SCHWARZ, Treasurer SEAL
Personalized Pocket Polo The personalized performance pocket polo wicks moisture, resists snags and retains its color for a professional look that lasts. It features 4-oz 100% polyester double-knit material with a self-fabric collar and is available in red, steel gray, black, bright blue, navy, Carolina blue, royal, or white. This will be personalized with your council or assembly name and number so please allow 10-12 business days for your order to be produced. S, M, L, XL: $40 each, 2XL: $42, 3XL: $43, 4XL: $44
Ties and Pocket Squares These 100% silk woven ties arrive in a gift box.
1. 4th Degree Navy/Gray Striped Tie $24, Long Tie $25 2. Emblem of the Order Navy/Gray Striped Tie $24.00, Long Tie $25 3. Emblem of the Order Red/Gold tie $20.00, Long Tie $21 4. Emblem Navy/Gray Striped Pocket Square $15 5. Emblem Red/Gold Pocket Square $15
OFFICIAL MAY 1, 2018: To owners of Knights of Columbus insurance policies and persons responsible for payment of premiums on such policies: Notice is hereby given that in accordance with the provisions of Section 84 of the Laws of the Order, payment of insurance premiums due on a monthly basis to the Knights of Columbus by check made payable to Knights of Columbus and mailed to same at PO Box 371492, Pittsburgh, PA 15250-7492, before the expiration of the grace period set forth in the policy. In Canada: Knights of Columbus, Place d’Armes Station, P.O. Box 220, Montreal, QC H2Y 3G7 ALL MANUSCRIPTS, PHOTOS, ARTWORK, EDITORIAL MATTER, AND ADVERTISING INQUIRIES SHOULD BE MAILED TO: COLUMBIA, PO BOX 1670, NEW HAVEN, CT 06507-0901. REJECTED MATERIAL WILL BE RETURNED IF ACCOMPANIED BY A SELF-ADDRESSED ENVELOPE AND RETURN POSTAGE. PURCHASED MATERIAL WILL NOT BE RETURNED. OPINIONS BY WRITERS ARE THEIR OWN AND DO NOT NECESSARILY REPRESENT THE VIEWS OF THE KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS. SUBSCRIPTION RATES — IN THE U.S.: 1 YEAR, $6; 2 YEARS, $11; 3 YEARS, $15. FOR OTHER COUNTRIES ADD $2 PER YEAR. EXCEPT FOR CANADIAN SUBSCRIPTIONS, PAYMENT IN U.S. CURRENCY ONLY. SEND ORDERS AND CHECKS TO: ACCOUNTING DEPARTMENT, PO BOX 1670, NEW HAVEN, CT 06507-0901.
COLUMBIA (ISSN 0010-1869/USPS #123-740) IS PUBLISHED MONTHLY BY THE KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS, 1 COLUMBUS PLAZA, NEW HAVEN, CT 06510-3326. PHONE: 203-752-4000, www.kofc.org. PRODUCED IN USA. COPYRIGHT © 2015 BY KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. REPRODUCTION IN WHOLE OR IN PART WITHOUT PERMISSION IS PROHIBITED. PERIODICALS POSTAGE PAID AT NEW HAVEN, CT AND ADDITIONAL MAILING OFFICES. POSTMASTER: SEND ADDRESS CHANGES TO COLUMBIA, MEMBERSHIP DEPARTMENT, PO BOX 1670, NEW HAVEN, CT 06507-0901. CANADIAN POSTMASTER — PUBLICATIONS MAIL AGREEMENT NO. 1473549. RETURN UNDELIVERABLE CANADIAN ADDRESSES TO: KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS, 50 MACINTOSH BOULEVARD, CONCORD, ONTARIO L4K 4P3 PHILIPPINES — FOR PHILIPPINES SECOND-CLASS MAIL AT THE MANILA CENTRAL POST OFFICE. SEND RETURN COPIES TO KCFAPI, FRATERNAL SERVICES DEPARTMENT, PO BOX 1511, MANILA.
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Stainless Steel Tumbler The 30-oz tumbler is made of FDA-compliant dual walled 18-8 stainless steel and features a laser-applied emblem of the Order. A removable twist-on lid keeps your cold drinks cold and your warm drinks warm! Our copper lined, vacuum insulated deep draw liner will maintain optimal drinking temperatures and prevents container sweating. Note: This product is BPA free. $20 each
knightsgear.com Questions? 1-855-GEAR-KOC (855-432-7562) Additional shipping costs apply to all orders. Please call before mailing in an order.
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K N I G H T S O F C O LU MBU S
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 Banal na Sakramento Council 8753 in Talipapa Novaliches, Quezon City, Luzon North, lead parishioners in a Good Friday procession. Council 8753 also provided the service of Knights as marshals for the liturgical event.
TO BE FEATURED HERE , SEND YOUR COUNCIL’ S “K NIGHTS IN A CTION ” PHOTO AS WELL AS ITS DESCRIPTION TO : C OLUMBIA , 1 C OLUMBUS P LAZA , N EW H AVEN , CT 06510-3326 OR EMAIL : KNIGHTSINACTION @ KOFC . ORG .
M AY 2018
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PLEASE, DO ALL YOU CAN TO ENCOURAGE PRIESTLY AND RELIGIOUS VOCATIONS. YOUR PRAYERS AND SUPPORT MAKE A DIFFERENCE.
K E E P T H E FA I T H A L I V E
As a second grader, I began to consider a call to the priesthood by “marrying” my friends on the playground and hearing “confessions” in the bushes. But in high school, my faith began to wane. While in college, I became so tired of being a lukewarm Catholic that I needed something to change. Either I would fall madly in love with God, or I would leave him forever. I came up with a timeframe for God to change my heart: three months. The Lord led me to a classmate who was on fire with her faith, and I asked about her spiritual practices. She recommended I try four things: daily Mass, frequent confession, adoration and serving the poor. A month later, I woke up late one morning, ran to class and felt lost all day. I realized I had missed Mass. My love for the Eucharist had grown, a love that eventually propelled me into the seminary and has brought immense peace in my life ever since. I gave God three months. He did it in one. FATHER SCOTT A. GRATTON Diocese of Burlington St. Stephen’s Council 2284 in Winooski, Vt.
Photo by Natalie Stultz Photography & Film
‘MY LOVE FOR THE EUCHARIST BROUGHT IMMENSE PEACE.’
Columbia May 2018