Chaplains Meeting and Membership Seminar
At the annual Chaplains Meeting during the Supreme Convention, Supreme Knight Carl Anderson spoke about the new program for families that the Order is rolling out in October. Called “Building the Domestic Church: The Family Fully Alive,” the program seeks to develop strong Catholic families through a month-by-month guide with which councils can get families involved in prayer, faith formation, charitable activities and family gatherings.
At the Monday morning meeting, a newly developed booklet with information and monthly outlines was provided to the chaplains for their review and comments.
The supreme knight told the chaplains that they will be a key in promoting “Building the Domestic Church” within state and local councils and assuring its effectiveness. The program will not only help prepare families for the 8th World Meeting of Families to be held in Philadelphia in September 2015, he explained, it will also provide ongoing formation for families in the years to come.
“The key to the success of this program will be you, the chaplains,” Anderson said, as he asked them for their input and ideas. “We are seeking to have this program become integrated into the life of the Order.”
He added, “One thing a council can do to make this program a success is to make sure that this booklet gets into the hands of every council family.”
The meeting, chaired by Supreme Chaplain Archbishop William Lori, was attended by 90 state and local council chaplains from throughout the Order. The supreme knight and the supreme chaplain thanked the bishops and priests for taking the time to attend the Supreme Convention and for their hard work during the year in their respective jurisdictions.
Archbishop Lori said that the family program is based on the pastoral teachings of St. John Paul II, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI and Pope Francis. “It is our job to open up this rich body of wisdom and bring it down to the parish and council level, to make it accessible to the average family,” he said.
Also speaking at the meeting was Dominican Father Jon Kalisch, director of chaplains and spirituality for the Knights of Columbus.
Supreme Knight Anderson also addressed the hundreds of Knights assembled for the Membership Seminar, held at the same time on Monday morning.
Citing Pope Francis, he said just as people must be drawn to the Church by attraction, so Knights must be attractive, faith-filled and joyful witnesses in order to attract more members to the Order.
He said that Venerable Father Michael McGivney, the founder of the Knights of Columbus, was one of the greatest evangelizers of the 19th century. The Order he started in the basement of St. Mary’s Church in New Haven, Connecticut, has grown into a worldwide organization with more than 1.8 million members.
Today’s Knights must carry on Father McGivney’s vision and mission as evangelizers in the world today in their own families, parishes and communities. If they live out the Order’s principles of charity, unity and fraternity, they will bring many more men and their families into the Order, he pointed out. More members will lead to greater charitable works as each council seeks to reach more and more people in need, he said.