OCTOBER IS THE MONTH OF THE ROSARY
October has many traditions. There’s post-season baseball, tailgating at football games, apple picking and, of course, Halloween. But most importantly, there is the Rosary.
As decreed by Pope Leo XIII, October is the Month of the Rosary. For Knights of Columbus, this has a special significance. When a man joins our Order, he receives a Knights of Columbus rosary – at 1.9 million members, that’s a lot of rosaries. And praying the rosary is an activity that our members do communally as part of council life.
According to Catholic traditions, St. Dominic was given the rosary by the Blessed Virgin Mary in 1214 in the Monastery of Prouille.
Since then, it has become one of the Catholic Church’s powerful tools of prayer. But why pray the Rosary? Here are 5 of them. One for every decade.
1) The Blessed Mother gave us 15 Promises if we prayed the rosary
Alanus de Rupe, a 15th century Dominican preacher, claimed that he was visited by the Blessed Virgin Mary, who gave 15 promises to Christians who prayed the rosary, including the Blessed Mother’s special protection and greatest graces, the light of God, a powerful armor against Hell, as well as dominance over misfortune.
2) To obtain world peace
“Continue praying the rosary every day in honor of Our Lady of the Rosary, in order to obtain peace for the world and the end of the war, because only She can help you.” This is what Our Lady of Fatima said to three children, Lucia dos Santos and her cousins Francisco and Jacinta Marto in June 1917.
The Blessed Mother visited the children in Fatima, Portugal from May 13, 1917 to October 13, 1917 a period that culminated in the Miracle of the Sun, otherwise known as, “The Day the Sun Danced.”
3) Time to reflect on the Gospel mysteries
The rosary consists of the Apostle’s Creed, the Hail Mary, the Our Father, the Glory Be, along with other prayers. However, in between each decade, we are invited to reflect on the Mysteries of the Gospel: Joyful, Sorrowful, Glorious, and Luminous.
In these mysteries, we rediscover, examine, and ponder the stories from the Gospel, and discover the real meaning of those events in the silence of our hearts.
4) Spiritual healing
And speaking of silence, another purpose of praying the rosary is to allow the repetition of the prayers enter into the silence of our hearts, where Christ’s spirit dwells.
It is in that silence, we become more connected with the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
Not only that, but Jesus reveals to us that “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind.”
But to do so, we must make time for Him. The rosary is the perfect way to make time to connect with God, and for spiritual healing. Take 15 minutes a day to be one with Him.
5) Prayer works!
The power of prayer is unspeakable. The answer to every prayer is a miracle, in and of itself. It is our lifeline to Him, to our souls, and to each other.
But the reason why October is the Month of the Holy Rosary is due to the power of prayer.
In 1571, Pope St. Pius V organized a group of Christian forces, known as the Holy League, in defense of an imminent invasion by the Ottoman Empire. Before a battle with the Ottoman fleet in the Gulf of Patras, in the Ionian Sea, the pope called on all of Europe to pray the rosary for victory. These prayers was answered, with the Holy League defeating the much larger Ottoman forces on October 7 at the battle of Lepanto.
To commemorate the victory, Pius V established the feast day of “Our Lady of Victory” – also known as Our Lady of the Rosary.
Hundreds of years after the battle of Lepanto, Pope Francis is now calling all Catholics this month to pray the rosary daily to “protect the Church from the devil, who always seeks to separate us from God and from each other.”
So, in solidarity, let us pray to our most gracious advocate, the Blessed Mother, for peace throughout the world, and within our souls. It only takes 15 minutes.
KNIGHTS REBUILD AFTER HURRICANE DORIAN
By Andrew Fowler
FREEPORT, Bahamas — Lilian Ferguson has lived through five hurricanes since moving to Freeport in 1972 with her husband. But Hurricane Dorian was different. When the water started rising and engulfed the entire property because of Hurricane Dorian, she believed she would be face to face with Jesus.
“It was frightening,” Ferguson said. “I have never seen any storm like this one.”
Since the storm pounded the Bahamas and the Carolinas, the Knights of Columbus have coordinated relief efforts with the Archdiocese of Nassau and raised more than $620,000 through its Disaster Relief Fund. The Supreme Council is also sending blankets, air mattresses, portable gas stoves, solar generators and other basic necessities.
After the storm subsided and the waters began to recede, Ferguson was alone to clean-up. She has lived alone since her husband died four years ago. The water damage reached the windows and her roof suffered significant wind damage.
When members of the Knights of Columbus heard about her situation, they rushed to help, cleaning up debris and putting tar paper on the roof to prevent more water damage.
“They are always helping out,” Ferguson said. “Every occasion, every disaster they step in and help.”
SHELTER FROM THE STORM
Meanwhile, at 2:30 P.M. on September 3. Nolan Dean and his family had nowhere else to go for shelter but their own home. Dean, a member of Grand Bahama Council 10647, took his children and grandchildren into the attic. He and his family spent their time praying for the duration of the storm. After it passed, Dean went downstairs and saw that the water was up to the door knob.
It was a similar situation for Patrick Ferguson, a member of Grand Bahama Council 10647.
His daughter, who works at a Freeport power company, called him to get out of the city. Ferguson rushed home, gathered his family, including his 90 year-old mother-in-law, and rushed to a shelter. They stayed there for almost three days.
Other Knights and their families on the Abaco and Grand Bahama, which suffered the most damage from Hurricane Dorian, lost their homes and possessions. When the hurricane made landfall on September 1, with maximum winds of 185mph, it was the strongest storm on modern record for the northwestern Bahamas.
Many people became homeless as the storm wiped out entire neighborhoods. The official death count is currently at 50, with residents believing that the dead number in the thousands. The confirmed number is likely to climb as officials begin to clear the debris.
“Right now in Abaco, every settlement in the central and northern part of the island has major damages,” Nassau Council 10415 member Bertram Murray said. “We're talking about a block of just demolished homes, debris, trees along the street.”
Knights like Dean and Ferguson are providing the necessary supplies and manpower to get their neighbors back on their feet.
“We feel good doing something for the people right now even though we got our own damage,” Dean said. “I go two hours, one hour, whatever the case may be, but that makes me be proud to be a Knight.”
A KNIGHT’S CHARACTER
It’s not in a Knight’s character to let people suffer, according to Samuel Bain, a member of Nassau Council 10415.
For Alexandria Roberts, an administrator with the Archdiocese of Nassau, the Knights are a reliable support system. When her office was in tatters, Knights helped clean it and lifted filing cabinets too heavy for Roberts.
“[It] was a relief for me,” Roberts said. “Whenever they’re called upon, they rise to the occasion to do what they can do and what they’re able to do.”
The disaster relief has been a combined effort between Knights in the Bahamas and the Florida State Council. But it hasn’t been easy.
“All of the infrastructure is absolutely gone,” Florida State Deputy Scott O’Connor said. “It is such a dire situation for those people there. There's mass exodus off of some of these areas into Nassau, they're being overwhelmed.”
The logistics of delivering the supplies to the Bahamas have been challenging. For Ron Winn, the Florida Disaster Response Program Chairman, the logistics are more difficult than in previous storms he has seen, like Hurricane Michael last year. But the ocean isn’t stopping him or other Knights from bringing relief to hurricane victims, just like it didn’t stop Knights from assisting Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria.
“We have to stage [the supplies], it has to clear customs, it’s got to be shipped or flown over to the Bahamas and right now, it’s very limited of where it can go into until they clear a runway or clear a port,” Winn said. “It’s not like clearing a road. I can’t imagine trying to go out and clear a bay.”
Even though there have been logistical difficulties, Knights have persevered. That perseverance has brought hope to residents, including to Archbishop Patrick Pinder who wrote to the Florida State Council that Bahamians would be in a “miserable state and lacking hope” without Knights’ help.
“To see brother Knights and other councils who I’ve never met coming to the aid of the Bahamas, that’s something that really warms my heart,” Nassau Council 10415 member Augustine Hall said. “There is often a tendency to feel helpless and hopeless. And I think that mainly is why the Knights are here: to reassure people, to be there for people.”
Donate here to help victims of natural disasters.
SUPREME KNIGHT DELIVERS ANNUAL REPORT
8-6-19 > CARL ANDERSON, CEO AND SUPREME KNIGHT OF THE KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS, ANNOUNCES NEW INITIATIVES AND SHOWCASES HIGHLIGHTS OF PAST FRATERNAL YEAR
MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. — Supreme Knight Carl Anderson spoke to fellow members of the Knights of Columbus at the Order’s 137th Supreme Convention. In his speech during the business session, Supreme Knight Anderson highlighted the achievements from the past fraternal year and announced new initiatives for the Order.
The theme of his speech was “Knights of Unity.”
KNIGHTS OF UNITY
“Through our unity, we will continue to rise in charity and fraternity. And as we extend the hand of brotherhood, we will continue to transform the world around us — a world that needs more, not less, of the truth and witness that define all those who call themselves Knights of Columbus.”
KENDRICK CASTILLO POSTHUMOUSLY DECLARED A KNIGHT
“Kendrick wanted to be a Knight of Columbus because he wanted to help not only people, but his community. And in his last moments, Kendrick Castillo did both.”
“This evening we will posthumously present Kendrick with the Knights of Columbus Caritas Award.
I now ask the delegates here assembled to stand. And I now ask: Shall we grant Kendrick Castillo full membership in the Knights of Columbus?”
“My brother Knights, we have made a momentous decision. Kendrick wanted to join the Knights of Columbus to be more like us. By your acclamation, you have told the world that we want to be more like him.”
(READ KENDRICK CASTILLO’S FULL STORY HERE)
HONORING NATIVE AMERICAN AND FIRST NATION COMMUNITIES
“In the United States, as well as in Canada, there are communities that too often are ignored. That is why we are launching a new initiative focused on Native Americans in the United States and First Nations people in Canada.”
The initiative will include:
A partnership between the Knights, the Diocese of Gallup, and the Southwest Indian Foundation to build a new shrine to St. Kateri Tekakwitha.
Work with the Black and Indian Mission Office.
Encouraging local councils to become more engaged with Catholics living on reservations and tribal lands.
BORDER REFUGEE SUPPORT
“We are prepared to commit at least $250,000 immediately in humanitarian aid for refugees to the southern border. We are prepared to expand it, with additional resources, to help those in refugee camps in every border state — including Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California. ”
“Let me be clear: This is not a political statement. This is a statement of principle. This is about helping people who need our help right now. It is a natural and necessary extension of our support for refugees across the world. It shows our nation and the world that where there is a need, there is a Knight to answer it. And on our southern border, the Knights of Columbus will be there.”
(CHECK OUT LOCAL KNIGHTS DELIVERING SUPPLIES TO MEXICO HERE)
CULTURE OF LIFE
“The Knights of Columbus, through countless acts of charity, affirms the dignity of every person, from conception to natural death. This service is fundamental to our principle of unity. And nowhere is our commitment more obvious — and today more important — than in our stand for the sanctity of unborn life.”
“My brother Knights, the day is coming when Roe v. Wade will be overturned. The day is coming when we will march down Pennsylvania Avenue to the steps of the Supreme Court, not in protest, but in celebration. That day is coming when America will once again embrace life.”
Knights completed 10-year goal of placing 1,000 ultrasound machines.
8 in 10 Americans say abortion should be limited — at most — to the first three months of pregnancy. That includes 65% who describe themselves as “pro-choice.”
KNIGHTS DONATE $2.7 MILLION IN DISASTER RELIEF
“Knights don’t just step up in ordinary times. Our courage comes to the fore in extraordinary moments — especially in times of trial. … It is a powerful reminder that when disaster strikes, the Knights of Columbus strike back with service.”
Knights saving neighbors from wildfires.
Knights donating more than half a million dollars to hurricane victims.
Knights helping first responders in historic Midwest flooding.
FAITH IN ACTION
“St. John Paul II told us, ‘A new state of affairs … calls with a particular urgency for the action of the lay faithful.’ We cannot run away or stand on the sidelines. We must do our part.”
Our part includes programs on:
KNIGHTS RESPOND TO CRISIS IN CHURCH WITH THE HEART OF A PRIEST
“As we strive to renew our Church, we must remember that renewal starts within our own hearts. That message was brought across the United States this year through our nationwide relic tour of the incorrupt heart of St. Jean Vianney, the patron saint of parish priests.”
More information on the #HeartofaPriest pilgrimage:
300,000 people venerated the relic in 99 dioceses.
More than 7,500 miles covered.
The Order is continuing the tour in Canada in the new fraternal year.
(WATCH THE HEART OF A PRIEST TOUR HERE)
KNIGHTS RELEASE IMPORTANT VIDEO TO HELP FAMILIES PROTECT CHILDREN
“The video recounts the story of a Knights of Columbus family whose son was victimized by sexual abuse and how this courageous brother Knight and his wife responded. Their story is shocking, but it is also inspiring and empowering.”
(WATCH THE FULL VIDEO HERE)
“We must always remember the tremendous efforts and courage required to overcome the bigoted contention that Catholic faith made a citizen “unfit” for public office. … In other words, Catholics need not apply.”
“If we cannot participate in public life because of our core beliefs, then surely it will be our nation that is the loser.”
Judicial nominee faces Senate scrutiny over Knights of Columbus membership.
Others speak out against religious tests for federal office.
PERSECUTED CHRISTIANS IN THE MIDDLE EAST
“When I met with Pope Francis earlier this year about this crisis, he told me that ‘the Middle East without Christians is not the Middle East’ and he strongly encouraged us to continue our work.”
Since 2014, we have committed more than $25 million.
Knights also played a pivotal role in the unanimous passage of the Iraq and Syria Genocide Relief and Accountability Act.
The Order entered into a historic Memorandum of Understanding with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).
The Supreme Knight addressed the State Department’s Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom.
(READ A TIMELINE OF THE ORDER’S EFFORTS IN THE MIDDLE EAST HERE)
OUR INTERNATIONAL REACH
“The Knights of Columbus are champions of charity — not just in the United States, but in every country where we are present.”
Canadian Knights donated $19 million and 5.7 million hours to charity.
(Read more about Niagara Falls’ “Knights of Columbus Week” here)
Mexican Knights activities include:
Feeding and clothing more than 300 needy people.
Raising money for the construction of a local seminary and parish church.
Hosting a pilgrimage to Christ the King Mountain with an icon of Our Lady Help of Persecuted Christians that included thousands.
Knights in South Korea established a Peace Refugee Center to serve people who’ve fled violence across the world.
(Read more here)
Knights in the Philippines held a Triduum for Peace after bomb attack killed three Knights.
Ukrainian Knights held summer camps for the children of veterans, visited hospitals where the wounded are being treated, and repaired the home of a family who lost their sons in battle.
Knights in France proudly support the Notre-Dame Cathedral’s reconstruction.
KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS INSURANCE
“We always remember that our Catholic difference is key to our success.”
“With more than $109 billion of insurance in force, nearly $9 billion in annual sales, and more than $26 billion of assets under management.”
The Order ranked on the Fortune 1000 list of America’s largest companies.
KNIGHTS OFFERS NEW CHARITABLE GIVING VEHICLE
“This program sponsors donor-advised funds designed to help Catholic institutions, members of our Order, and other Catholics more effectively direct their charitable giving.”
“The Knights of Columbus Charitable Fund can only be used to benefit groups and causes that are in line with Catholic values.”
(FOR MORE INFORMATION, CLICK HERE)
“Asset Advisors has grown to more than $750 million in assets under management. Asset Advisors now is used by dozens of dioceses, religious orders and state and local councils.”
Statement on Research Use of Fetal Tissue
6-5-19 > Supreme Knight Carl Anderson's Statement:
The Knights of Columbus applauds the action taken today by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to end research by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) using fetal tissue obtained from elective abortions. Over the past several years, NIH has spent millions of taxpayer dollars pursuing this unethical research and today’s announcement is an important step ensuring that public funding is not used to support a practice that depends on the destruction of innocent human life. We thank the Department for this important action and encourage HHS to ensure that all grants maintain a respect for human life.
The hallowed halls of the U.S. Senate was the site of a provocative but important question by Sen. Ben Sasse to a judicial nominee: “Are you now or have you ever been involved in the organization of a fish fry.”
It was funny, but it wasn’t necessarily a laughing matter.
At issue was the recent move by some of Sasse’s colleagues to question judicial nominees about their membership in the Knights of Columbus.
At a recent U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, Sen. Sasse (R., Neb.) defended the Knights of Columbus in a series of questions to Peter Phipps, a nominee for United States Circuit Judge for the Third Circuit. Phipps is a Knight belonging to Edward Douglass White Council 2473 in Arlington, Va.
Sasse then asked Phipps if he had gotten questions for the record about being a member of the Knights of Columbus. Phipps said he had received questions during the process for his district court nomination back in May 2018.
Phipps is not the only judicial nominee to be questioned over his membership in the Knights. Last December, Brian C. Buescher was questioned about whether his Knights of Columbus membership would prevent him from “fairly and impartially” hearing cases on the U.S. District Court for the District of Nebraska. Several senators stated that the organization had “taken a number of extreme positions” on the issues of same-sex marriage and abortion.
Phipps explained to Sasse that the Knights of Columbus is a Catholic fraternal organization dedicated to uniting men of faith. He noted that it was founded in the late 19th century to help provide for families at a time where many men faced dangerous working conditions.
“It’s a charitable organization,” Phipps said. “It’s an organization that has social and recreational activities that many members of my family have really enjoyed and really benefitted from.”
Sasse then provided for the record a number of facts about the Knights:
Knights of Columbus is the largest Catholic fraternal service organization in the world.
In 2017 the Knights volunteered and contributed more than $185 million to charitable organizations and activities.
Also in 2017, Knights volunteered more than 75,600,000 service hours.
The Knights have a proud tradition of standing against the forces of prejudice and oppression such as the Ku Klux Klan.
Sasse expressed his concern that questioning over membership in the Knights is “becoming common practice on the committee.”
“I really hope we reconsider this new tradition on this committee of asking people about their religious commitments.”
This is not the first time Sen. Sasse has come to the aid of the Knights. In January of this year, he introduced a resolution adopted by unanimous consent that “disqualifying a nominee to federal office on the basis of membership in the Knights of Columbus” violates that anti-religious test clause of the U.S. Constitution.
To learn more about the Knights of Columbus and how you can get involved, click here.