In the midst of the ongoing global pandemic, the Knights of Columbus will financially support the Vatican’s upcoming broadcasts of its Christmas celebrations in order to help Catholics around the world spiritually join Pope Francis in prayer.
The broadcasts include Pope Francis’ midnight Mass and his Christmas message and Urbi et Orbi blessing.
“It has long been a high honor for the Knights of Columbus to collaborate with the Holy See in making possible the global broadcasts of major papal events, but I dare say that these broadcasts have never been more important than they are now during the ongoing pandemic, when so many are unable to attend Mass in person,” said Supreme Knight Carl Anderson in a letter to the Vatican Dicastery for Communication.
He continued, “For that reason, the Knights of Columbus is especially pleased to help make it possible for people around the world to tune in and spiritually join with the Holy Father during this year’s Christmas celebrations in Rome.”
(Watch the Vatican Christmas celebrations)
This is not the first time the Knights of Columbus has financially supported papal broadcasts. Earlier this year, the Knights underwrote costs related to the broadcasts for the Vatican’s Good Friday Stations of the Cross and the Holy Father’s Easter Sunday Mass. The Order also supported the Holy Father’s extraordinary Urbi et Orbi blessing from an empty St. Peter’s Square on March 27 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, which was seen by millions worldwide.
The Knights of Columbus has a long history of supporting not just the televised broadcasts, but all the Vatican’s telecommunications efforts. The Knights provided funding for a shortwave transmitter for Vatican Radio in 1965 and has funded Vatican satellite broadcasts since 1977. It has also sponsored mobile production units for Vatican television.
The Knights established a permanent presence in Rome a century ago, in 1920, at the invitation of Pope Benedict XV to assist the young people of the city. The Knights have been hard at work in the Eternal City ever since. In February, Pope Francis met with the Knights of Columbus leadership and praised the organization for its charity and “unswerving devotion to the successor of Peter.”
To learn more about how the Knights of Columbus has supported the Vatican for over a century, check out the latest book “The Knights of Columbus: An Illustrated History.”
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