I had the great opportunity to attend the Supreme Council’s 140th Annual Convention in Nashville from 2 – 4 August. That event is a tremendous opportunity to understand the breadth and scope of the Knights of Columbus across the world – you should strive to one day help represent Indiana as a Delegate to the Supreme Convention.
New Fraternal Year: While it may not exactly be “New” now in September, I would ask each Council and Assembly to consider a recurring Annual Donation to three very worthy causes as part of your Annual Budget Process.
There was a “Warriors to Lourdes International Military Pilgrimage” this year for the 1st Time in 3 years (2020 and 2021 Pilgrimages cancelled by the French government over COVID concerns). Current issue of COLUMBIA MAGAZINE has 5 pages on the Lourdes Military Pilgrimage (pgs 13- 17), and a Search on GOOGLE/ YouTube will get you many short videos on this same topic. Our State Knights raised enough to support 4 “Warriors” to Lourdes in FY 22 ($10,400). Let’s equal or exceed that amount this Fraternal Year. Use IN VET Form 1.
Indiana was also strong in support of the “Fr McGivney Military Chaplains Scholarship Fund”. Donations here help fund Seminarians who will eventually serve our military men/ women and their families. While there is a definite shortage of Catholic Priests across our State and Country – it is especially critical in our 5 Military Services. Any amount you can donate helps! Please us IN VET Form 1.
A ”third worthy cause” for all Councils & Assemblies to consider a contribution is to our Indiana Disaster Relief Team. Our State Knights working on this effort have helped relieve suffering of those impacted by various natural disasters – and we need to assist State Warden Bill McDonald achieve his “POWER OF ONE” Goals of $1 per Indiana Knight (approximately $33,000). This is not a “Veterans Affairs” effort – but it is a State K of C activity that I believe accomplishes great things, and certainly represents our State so well!
VETERAN’S Activities/ Masses in November: Veterans Day (11 November) is not that far away. Now is the right time to begin planning, so two months from now you can execute worthwhile Veteran awareness/ recognition events. Having a “Veteran Mass” for your entire Parish is an excellent way to bring together Knights and Parishioners together around Veterans Day. Other ways to link the Knights and military appreciation can be with K of C Color Guards in Parades, Notices & information in your Parish Bulletin, sponsoring a Parish Coffee & Donuts on a “Veterans Sunday” in November. REMEMBER! Patriotism & Veteran recognition is a “Knight’s Activity” for all Knights – not just a responsibility of the 4th Degree.
DISTRICT DEPUTIES/ COUNCIL GRAND KNIGHTS: If you have upcoming meetings (in Person or Zoom-style) and you would like a short update/ presentation by Veterans Affairs – please contact me. One of our Goals in Veterans Affairs is to talk with Knights and provide information. Last year I met with over 12 Councils/ Districts – and hope to continue the same this Fraternal Year.
US Flags & Bunting: Thanks to our Partnership with Lowes, our Veterans Affairs Group was able to distribute over 750 US Flags to Parishes, Parish Schools, Council Buildings, GIBAULT, Diocesean properties, American Legions Riders, Veterans recognitions and even individual Knights. We have a few Flags (~75) of various sizes and ~20 Bunting sections remaining. If you can identify a good “home” for some flags/ bunting- please contact me (info below).
I am proud to serve as your State Veterans Affairs Chairman- and work with the members of our “Veterans Affairs Working Group”! Let us help you in this area.
VIVAT JESUS! KEEP YOUR POWDER DRY!
Indiana State Veterans Affairs Chairman
PGK/ FDD/ US Army (R)