Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is Risen! Alleluia! Alleluia! Indeed, the Son of Man has risen from the dead. As I write this, we have celebrated Christ’s Divine Mercy and now move into the second week of Easter. Out of Christ’s suffering and death we receive a path to eternal life through the forgiveness of sin; the institution of the Holy Eucharist, so that Christ can continue to feed us; and the institution of the priesthood, so that we can be nourished by the Word of God and be spiritually enriched. Easter marks the end of Jesus’ earthly life, the gift of the new covenant, and the beginning of the early Catholic Church. God loves us so much, that he gave us all of this and so much more. Living our lives according to God’s will is all that is asked of us.
I was drawn to our State Motto for the year, “Faith in Action – Knights Serving God, Serving the Community.” When I penned this motto, I envisioned that as Knights we are an order of men of deep faith in our Lord and in His teachings. We take that foundation of our faith and build on it by putting it into action through our charity, our unity, and our fraternity. We are leaders in our Church, our Family, our Community. To be a member of the Order, at minimum, one must be over 18 years of age, a practical Catholic, and in union with the Holy See. I think one qualification is missing, and that is you must be “on fire” in your faith life. There should not be anything lukewarm about a Knight of Columbus.
Not only should we follow the precepts of the church and enjoy a sacramental life, but we must live our faith out in the world for everyone to see. We don’t do our charitable work under the cloak of secrecy; no, our works are accomplished in the fullness of Christ’s light. So, as we come into the final days of our fraternal year, take stock in how you’ve served God, your parish, your Church, and your community this year? Today, are you a better Catholic, parishioner, husband, father, Knight, employee, or student, than this time last year? Are you “on fire?”
Don’t forget. The convention is just a few weeks away. The website for the State Convention on May 17-19, 2019 is active and can be found at https://www.azkofcstateconvention.org. Register soon as all registrations and payments must be received by Friday, May 3, 2019. Registrations received later than this date will be assessed an additional $10.00 fee for late processing. The hotel will fill up fast, make your hotel reservations now, before it’s too late. I look forward to seeing all my brothers at the Convention.
With just two months remaining, we have much work to be done. Remember to include recruitment as part of every Council program and encourage every Knight to recruit at least one new member. Our goal is still attainable with your commitment and hard work. Please contact Worthy State Warden and Membership Director Kevin McCarthy if you have questions or need help. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I challenge you Members, Grand Knights and District Deputies to claim your spot at the top. Grand Knights join these five brothers who are at the top: Gary Kluthe of Council 17036 at 450% of goal, Manual Chimal of Council 14804 at 325% of goal, Charles Goldsmith of Council 5221 at 267% of goal, Javier Negrete of Council 1806 at 211% of goal, or Joe Guerrero of Council 3510 at 180% of goal. Brother Knights, is there not one of you who can recruit more than the 18 members recruited by Albert Ustaszewski from Council 8305? Remember to submit membership forms as soon as possible so that your efforts can be counted.
During a ceremony held last month at the New Tempe Aid to Women Center, Most Reverend Thomas J. Olmsted, Bishop of Phoenix, joined me and Joe Kendra, Executive Director for the Aid to Women Center to receive a new ultrasound machine. Local Knights and center Staff joined Bishop Olmsted in the blessing of the new Ultrasound machine. Bishop Olmsted congratulated the fundraising efforts of the Knights, and thanked center staff for their dedication in truly helping local pregnant women.
This is Aid to Women’s second center and is right next door to the Tempe Planned Parenthood. They offer resources and compassionate care tor those facing planned or unplanned pregnancies. The fundraising efforts of the Knights of Columbus in Arizona in combination with a 50% matching grant from the Supreme Headquarters made the purchase possible. I am grateful for the work done by the Aid to Women Center in caring for women during their pregnancy and the help they provide to make lifesaving choices and provide needed resources at a critical point in a woman’s life.