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    The Zoom event united Knights from the U.S., Mexico and France in praying the rosary for an end to the pandemic and to civil unrest

    By Andrew Fowler 8/20/2020
    Knights of Columbus from around the world gather over Zoom to pray during the virtual rosary event. (Image courtesy Amed Galo Lopez)

    Knights of Columbus members at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) brought together brother Knights from around the world this summer for a virtual rosary prayer event. Through a Zoom video meeting on June 13, Knights from the United States, Mexico and France came together to pray for an end to the coronavirus pandemic and an end to civil unrest.

    Amed Galo Lopez, grand knight of UCLA Catholic Center Council 17285, has been developing friendships with Knights across the globe since he joined the Order, meeting them at the Order’s annual College Councils Conference and while studying abroad in Paris. And now, in response to the coronavirus, Lopez saw an opportunity to unite with his brother Knights around the world.

    “I thought maybe it would be great to do a prayer, a rosary with all of these councils considering that this is an international problem,” Lopez said. “I called a lot of my friends from these different countries and said ‘hey, let’s do a prayer for each other.’”

    More than 15 Knights participated in the virtual rosary, despite the time-zone challenges. The event began in the morning in Los Angeles, but in the evening in Paris. Every Knight spoke in their native language — English, French or Spanish — as they took turns leading the rosary. The image of Our Lady of Guadalupe, patroness of the Knights of Columbus, was also projected onto the screen of each participant.

    Arnaud Boutheon, the Knights of Columbus’ special consultant for French affairs, was one of the French Knights in attendance. He previously met Lopez last year when the UCLA student traveled abroad.

    “We were so happy to realize how real the brotherhood of the Order was,” Boutheon said about participating in the rosary. “We prayed together, we shared about our challenges, our purposes, united to the same goal, how to be great Knights.”

    “Beyond distance, we were close,” he continued. “This spiritual link brought fortitude and great hope for the future.”

    The Knights of Columbus is the largest Catholic fraternal organization in the world with more than 2 million members. Since its establishment in 1882, the Order has spread across the U.S., Canada, Philippines, France, South Korea, Panama and supported military councils in numerous countries. The College Councils program began in 1910 and has grown to nearly 400 campuses across the world, including nearly 150 active councils in the U.S. and Canada. It is this international fraternity that was the “spiritual genius” of Father Michael J. McGivney’s vision, Supreme Knight Carl Anderson stated during the 138th Supreme Convention.

    During the pandemic, the Knights of Columbus is offering opportunities for members to continue their activities online as well as continue their charitable and spiritual outreach through the Leave No Neighbor Behind program. As the lockdowns began, the Order promoted a prayer for Protection in Time of Pandemic.

    The pandemic was at the forefront throughout the international rosary event, but so too was the recent social unrest which spread across the U.S. and even into parts of Europe, Lopez stated.

    “This whole issue between racial discourse has been around for centuries, and we thought to also incorporate that into our prayers,” Lopez said. “We are brothers in all, we’re all in this together one way or another.”

    The college Knights at UCLA chose to organize the rosary event because rosaries are one of the “simplest symbols you could carry with you at all times” of the Catholic faith. Lopez also believes it represents the Knights’ duty toward the faith.

    “The rosary not only represents our Holy Mother from Heaven, but it represents protection and it represents what we do to protect the Catholic Church,” he said. “When we hold this rosary, when we pray this rosary, we pray not only as Knights, but as protectors of our Catholic faith.”

    Council 17285 plans to hold another international rosary in the coming weeks, with participants not only from the U.S., Mexico and France, but also from Canada, Poland and Kenya.

    Learn more about the college Knights program. Questions or comments on starting, supporting or growing a college council? Email

    Originally published in a weekly edition of Knightline, a resource for K of C leaders and members. Access Knightline’s monthly archives.



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