This news feed of the Knights of Columbus - Council of St. Francis the Poverello #8222 is intended to provide important announcements coming from Catholic news sources as well as updates from the local council at Saint Francis University.
02-17-2015: May we, as Knights, have Moral Courage!
As Knights of Columbus we are called to serve in many ways and to take action within our faith far more than just speaking of it. We are called to exercise moral courage.
"In physical courage, there can, however, be a potential moral danger namely that the courageous person is partly motivated by brashness: a desire to prove oneself to be "above fear," a dangerous self- assurance, which makes one assume that one is a “superman” who achieves victory by his bravery.
Moral courage does not challenge the forces of nature: the enemy is much more dangerous for it does not threaten our body, but our soul. Christ has warned us that this is the one danger we should fear most."
10-27-2014: 12 Ways to Become a Committed Catholic Man
There is a Catholic “man-crisis.” Large numbers of men who were baptized Catholic have left the Church and the majority of those who remain are “Casual Catholic Men”, men who do not know the Catholic faith and don’t practice it.
This large-scale failure of Catholic men to commit themselves to Jesus Christ and His Church has contributed to the accelerating decay of the post-modern culture. The long list of examples of cultural decay is obvious to those willing to look: industrialized slaughter of babies in the womb; the self-sterilization of contraceptives; epidemic promiscuity, pornography and sexual perversion; the avoidance of marriage; rampant divorce and adultery; so-called “marriage” of homosexuals; substance addictions; gender confusion; filth and coarseness in media; the loss of a connection to nature and escape into virtual “reality”; environmental exploitation; rampant materialism; the lost of the dignity of work; racial animas; commercialized gluttony; the dysfunctional political and legal system. Post-modern society is sick.
In midst of the societal decay, there are men who seek the true, beautiful and the good and are working to bring the peace and joy of Christ to the world: Committed Catholic Men. These men have completely committed themselves to the Almighty King, Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and to His Holy Church, realizing that true manhood is Catholic Manhood. This is the truest of loves, to love God with one’s full being and to love one’s neighbor as one’s self. Committed Catholic Men have realized the great blessings that flow from being committed to Christ and His Church. Committed Catholic Men have made Sainthood their goal and have made their purpose to lead their families and as many as others as possible to Heaven.
Committed Catholic Men realize that behind the cultural decay, lurks Satan. They have come to know that Satan is real, Hell is real, Sin is real and that life is a battle to confront and defeat Satan, the Evil One who is waiting at every turn to devour the unprepared. Committed Catholic Men are not perfect, but take seriously Christ’s call to perfection. It is only in Christ, that Committed Catholic Men find the courage to persevere when they fall into Sin and are continually strengthened for the battle against Satan.
10-03-2014: Our Vocation to Fraternity
At the 132nd Supreme Convention, held this past August in Orlando, Supreme Knight Carl Anderson addressed a delegation of over 2,000 Knights and their families, representing K of C jurisdictions from throughout the world.
The theme of the meeting — “You Will All Be Brothers: Our Vocation to Fraternity” — was inspired by Pope Francis’ message for the World Day of Peace Jan. 1. In that message, the pope observed, “The family is the wellspring of all fraternity, and as such it is the foundation and the first pathway to peace.” Noting the responsibility of Christians to serve those in need, he added, “Service is the soul of that fraternity that builds up peace.”
09-22-2014: In Defense of Gentlemanly Things
"I don’t think young men dressing, acting, and drinking with a vintage flare are longing for vintage for fashion’s sake, but I think deep down are looking for the universals of manliness that our culture is failing to give: brotherhood, fatherhood, even friendship."
"In the post-modern “anything goes and nothing means anything” world, men are lost, not knowing what to believe or what to do. Seduced into pursuing their own selfish passions, post-modern men are manipulated like C.S. Lewis predicted they would be: “men without chests”, who don’t know what to believe and are manipulated by those with political and material power through propaganda to do what the powerful desire. This is not freedom, it is slavery.
Everywhere you look, the depressing rotten fruit of post-modernism is poisoning men: men have abandoned women and children, men avoid growing in virtue and pursue the lewd, trivial and profane, wandering aimlessly between various vices, men live sedentary and flabby lives, over-stuffed with cheap calories and alcohol. Like ancient Rome in its dying days, men are seduced with bread (e.g. fast food, microwave meals, the Food Channel) and circuses (e.g. celebrity shenanigans, “news” that seeks to indoctrinate and agitate, video games, sporting events and porn; for many men, this list is in reverse order of time spent watching). Great men of the past and present, scratch their heads, wondering “What the hell happened?” The response: Hell happened. In the post-modern void of nothingness, Satan finds warm bodies.
Post-modern men are not “belongers”, preferring to be “free-agents”, unattached to anything but their own selfish passions. Every man who lives that way learns, sooner or later, that life has an endpoint and brokenness, loneliness and despair comes to every man who tries to go it alone. Men don’t find peace and joy in separateness, men find separateness.
In this dying culture that has lost its way, there is a place of certainty and honor, a place of communion with both God and man, a source for the beautiful, true and good that has stood the test of time: The Catholic Church. Those who don’t know this, don’t know the Catholic Church. Those who think they know the Catholic Church and hate it, don’t know Jesus Christ. The Catholic Church is the Body of Christ and Christ is our Head. You can’t fully love Christ and hate His Catholic Church.
Instead of living as a “free-agent”, every man can become be part of a greater good, the Greatest Good, the good ordained by the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. Instead of a life of deluded intoxication in worldly distractions, every man can pursue something of infinite value and embrace his God-given greatness. Every man can be a priest, prophet and king.
As a man you are called to greatness and in the Catholic Church every man can become great. Here is a list of the Top Ten Reasons to be a Catholic Man..."
08-11-2014: SFU Knights Defend Life in Cambria County!
The SFU Knights conducted their first Pro-Life fundraising efforts during the 2013-2014 academic year after having been re-established on campus in February 2013. Through the efforts of multiple drives, the college council was able to raise $237 and chose to keep the funds within the surrounding Cambria County community by donating the money to the Birthright center in Johnstown, PA.
Birthright is a non-profit charitable organization that provides support to women facing unplanned pregnancies. They have chapters across Canada, the United States, and Africa, as well as a 24/7 North American toll-free Helpline. Birthright is supported by devoted volunteers and private donations. The Birthright center in Johnstown is completely funded by donations from local supports and parishes. Go to www.birthright.org to learn more.
"The Saint Francis University Knights of Columbus college council is very excited to support the Birthright center in Johnstown. Having just re-established our council a little over a year ago, we immediately wanted to support the Pro-Life mission that is so central to our faith as Catholics and to the international fraternal order of the Knights of Columbus. We wanted to keep our donations within the local community in hopes that it might assist the mothers, children, and their families - our neighbors - here in Cambria County. The SFU Knights look forward to continuing this important relationship with the Johnstown Birthright for many years to come and we take great pride in our responsibility to help protect the beautiful gift of life right here at home." - Bobby Anderson, Grand Knight
Pictured (l-r): Mrs. Mary Kay Clark, Executive Director of the Johnstown Birthright center, Mr. Bobby Anderson, Grand Knight of SFU Knights - Council 8222
(Taken from The Catholic Gentleman, August 4, 2014)
St. Josemaria Escriva was a natural leader. In the world of business or politics, he could have been what the world would consider a “great man.” Instead, he became a priest and dedicated his considerable talents to the advancement of the Kingdom of God, pouring his heart and soul into raising up an army of apostles who sanctify the world from the inside out.
05-14-2014: "The days of comfortable Catholicism are past."
As Catholics, we have lost the luxury of being comfortable in our faith in 21st-century America. More than ever before, we must embrace the risks of discipleship by encountering others and witnessing to the Gospel.
Cardinal O’Malley said the toughest mission assignment for the Church today is no longer the far-off lands of Papua New Guinea, but the United States or places in Western Europe, “where secularization and de-Christianization are gaining ground.”
Read more of this sobering conversation between Cardinal Sean O’Malley of Boston and Princeton professor Robert George as documented by the National Catholic Register on Tuesday, May 13th 2014... CLICK HERE.
John 15: 18-21
18. If the world hates you, realize that it hated me first.
19. If you belonged to the world, the world would love its own; but because you do not belong to the world, and I have chosen you out of the world, the world hates you.
20. Remember the word I spoke to you, ‘No slave is greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours.
21. And they will do all these things to you on account of my name, because they do not know the one who sent me."
04-29-2014: Spiritual Weapons: Fasting
Although the Lenten season is over for this liturgical year, as Catholic gentlemen we are called to constant conversion and constant discipline forever seeking God's grace and favor. The Catholic Gentleman blog reminds us of a very powerful spiritual weapon against sin aiding our lives in the pursuit of spiritual perfection: fasting.
Fasting is a way for our spiritual selves to conquer the body and all earthly desires that corrupt and lead us further from God's grace and further from our heavenly inheritance.
“Those who belong to Christ have crucified nature, with all its passions, all its impulses.” St. Paul
Read more of a theological explanation of the practice of fasting and sharpen your spiritual weapon to be ever-ready to combat the enemy of sin. CLICK HERE TO READ THE CATHOLIC GENTLEMAN'S POST
04-16-2014: The Tragedy of Judas Iscariot
If there is one truly tragic figure in the New Testament it is Judas Iscariot.
He is the one that Christ himself observes that "it might have been better if he had never been born." The horror of Christ's words are unrelenting. We might be inclined, given Christ's words and out of indignation at Judas' role in the cruel death of Christ, to make Judas less a man and more of a devil. But, that would be wrong. The tragedy of Judas is not that he was evil, but that he was like us — and like us in ways that we might never be willing to admit.
What makes Judas stand out then?
On this Wednesday of Holy Week, Father Steve Grunow offers a compelling reflection on the tragic figure of Judas Iscariot...and our own identification with his great mistake. READ HERE...
The recent induction of Saint Francis University's President-elect, Fr. Malachi Van Tassell, TOR, is making headlines throughout the local region and the diocese.
Click here to read the official Press Release released by Saint Francis University on Monday, April 7th, 2014.
01-10-2014: What is a "Catholic Gentleman"?
What does it mean to be a "Catholic Gentlemen"? Catholic blogger, Sam Guzman (author of The Catholic Gentleman blog), reminds us of the eloquent words of Bl. Cardinal Newman:
"Hence it is that it is almost a definition of a gentleman to say that he is one who never inflicts pain. He is mainly occupied in merely removing the obstacles which hinder the free and unembarrassed action of those about him; and he concurs with their movements rather than takes the initiative himself." ... [follow this link to read more of Newman's definition of a Catholic gentleman]
With society constantly criticizing and liberally redefining what the role of men should be, it leaves weaker-minded men to become impressionable and willing to bend to the will of popular, yet fickle trends. Given the dawn of a new year, let us take some time to review what the church says about the role of men within our communities and our families. Let's then consider what the world truly needs from us and vow to fully live our faith to provide the answer for what God calls us to be...true men of the cross...disciples of Christ...these men they call Knights!
11-20-2013: We are called to remain...One Nation Under God
In Stephen White's recent post on CatholicVote.org, he captures the essence of Lincoln's own understanding that "America’s greatness was neither an accident nor an entitlement. Whatever greatness was in this nation was, by the grace of God, an achievement of our forebears; an inheritance received through no merit of our own to be passed on to posterity out of duty, if not charity". This is in direct alignment with the Knights of Columbus' own founding values of duty to our Church, duty to our fellow man, and duty to our Nation.
There is more polarization present in this nation today than we have seen in quite some time...Republican/Democrat, Conservative/Liberal, Gay/Straight, Religious/Atheist, etc. As we are celebrate the 150th anniversary of Lincoln's Gettysburg Address, it is important that we remember and reflect upon these great words spoken by a great leader knowing full well the impact they made in 1863, but also the relevance those words still have today. Consider these words in context with the challenges issued to us by our Holy Father, Pope Francis as it relates to the issues of the modern world and we are are called to love and serve one another through the love of Christ Jesus.
10-13-2013: SFU Knights Awarded by Bishop and State Deputy
The SFU Knights were the recipients of two awards Sunday afternoon at the 3rd annual Vocations Endowment Fund dinner held at the Our Lady of Loretto Community Hall in Loretto (Pa.). The dinner and awards followed a mass that was celebrated by Most Rev. Mark L. Bartchak, Bishop of the Altoona/Johnstown Diocese at the Basilica of St. Michael the Archangel in Loretto.
Presenting the awards were Eric Johnson (KofC State Deputy - Pa.), Gerald Krall (KofC State Advocate - Pa.), Fr. V. David Foradori (KofC State Chaplain - Pa.), Ronald Lynch (KofC District Deputy - Pa. #73), and Joseph Hines (KofC District Warden - Pa. #73).
The SFU Knights were chosen as recipients for the two awards based upon their membership growth during the 2012-2013 council year. Since re-establishing on the campus of Saint Francis University in October of 2012, the SFU Knights had grown to over 50 members by April of 2013. This unprecedented growth has been recognized by the Supreme Council (New Haven, CT) through the Father Michael J. McGivney Award for council membership growth and the Contest of Champions Award for highest growth percentage.
Pictured is the state and district officers (as listed above), Bishop Bartchak, and members of the SFU Knights Council #8222.
Life isn't easy...sure we all know that. But how can one's life somehow appear so much different than that of another? What is their secret? Why can they be so joyful in life despite its trials and tribulations? Don't they have challenges in their life, too?
We are reminded countless times throughout the gospel that God is "already there" and that he will not let us fall. Remember when Peter was called by Jesus to leave the boat and to join Him by walking on water amidst the storm? Are we too many times like Peter, doubting God's love for us, succumbing to the crashing waves beneath us and stormy skies above? Dr. Taylor Marshall, professor of philosophy, and Catholic blogger explains the difference as a matter of choice and a matter of perspective. Take heart...pray daily to receive the gift of grace...have faith in the Lord...Let Go...Let God.
It's easy to succumb to feelings of worry, anxiety, and impatience given the realities of life today. Between the reduced economy, waning job market, escalating prices (including education), and what some believe to be a wide-spread recession of moral character within this country (i.e. #DOMA, #Prop8, #HHS, #prochoice).
But despite all the noise, the Holy Father Pope Francis urges us to be patient with the Lord. To be patient with His intercessions within our personal lives, within our governments, and within our world. To seek an understanding of His deeper love and teachings so that we might know Him better and begin to provide calm, peace, and hope to the trouble that surrounds us. Slow down, breathe, contemplate, and pray. Our Lord has not forsaken us and wishes for us to join Him above the noise, above the busyness, above the despair; not so that we can turn our backs on the needs of our fellow brothers and sisters, but so that we might have a clearer vision, to see what He sees, so that we can act more precisely and more effectively. Doesn't this sound just like the mission of the Knights of Columbus? To act from a position obtained only through prayer, to trust in the Lord, and to have patience with His will and almighty plan? Just like the hymn says to us: "Be not afraid, I go before you always, come follow Me and I will give you rest."
Read more of Pope Francis' powerful message at http://www.news.va/en/news/pope-at-mass-the-mystery-of-gods-patience.
05-29-2013: In Solidarity with Pope Francis...
Is God sending us a message through the election of Pope Francis? The signs are everywhere...from the huge wave of Catholic evangelism moving through the Western hemisphere, to the election of a new Pope mid-way through the Year of Faith, to the very selection of "Francis" for his name, the Holy Father challenges us to walk with Christ to serve and lead in bold new ways.
"The past several weeks in the life of the Church have been truly remarkable.
When you think about it, the whole narrative involving the resignation of Benedict and the subsequent election of Francis seems sort of far-fetched, even a bit strange. But the strangeness of this moment is a beautiful, divine strangeness that appears tailor-made for the present, and is serving to re-center us on what is needed here and now."
02-26-2013: Ecce Homo: Recognizing the Dignity in All of Us
With the recent tragedy and homicide of Robert Saylor, a public debate has sparked regarding the dignity of those affected by physical or mental disabilities. The Most Rev. Samuel J. Aquila, archbishop of the Archdiocese of Denver, challenges us to take another look at the Gospel and the story of Christ as Pilate presented him to the Jews saying "Behold the man!" to show that he found no threat in Jesus and so the people should not either. We need to reconsider how we treat those who offend us and those that are "the least of these".
Read more about this horrific tragedy and the very real correlation to the life of Christ at http://www.catholicpulse.com/en/columnists/aquila/022513.html.
Today’s feast of the Baptism of the Lord is a moment to reflect not only on the Lord’s baptism, but also on our own. For in an extended sense, when Christ is baptized, so are we, for we are members of his body. As Christ enters the water, he makes holy the water that will baptize us. He enters the water and we follow. And in these waters he acquires gifts to give us...
Continue reading this beautiful post by Msgr. Charles Pope of the Archdiocese of Washington
12-20-2012: Why Choose a Catholic College?
So, why choose a Catholic College? With 4,000 institutions of higher education to choose from in the US, what is so special or different about Catholic higher ed?
"For Catholics, life is certainly about career, but also so much more: marriage and family, serving the Church and our communities, and ultimately Heaven. Together these are the most important things in life, and so ought to be seriously considered when choosing a college." The Most Rev. William E. Lori, Archbishop of Baltimore, explains the difference.
12-14-2012: Pope's message: 'Blessed are the Peacemakers'
Pope Benedict XVI’s message for World Peace Day 2013 was presented to journalists at a press conference in the Vatican on Friday by the president, secretary and under-secretary of the Pontifical Justice and Peace Council. Entitled ‘Blessed are the Peacemakers’, the message looks at both the theological and practical foundations for promoting justice and peace in today’s world.
Read this great post by Philippa Hitchen at http://en.radiovaticana.va/articolo.asp?c=647712
12-01-2012: Why Don't Catholics Read the Bible?
Catholics live-out the Bible in their daily lives - so we don't really need to read the Bible, right?
Read this excellent post by Dan Burke to uncover why this simple, daily devotional is one of the most important things that we, as Catholics, should be doing.
This blog posted on the Catholic Pulse Blog speaks about the Year of Faith and the New Evangelization challenge issued to us by the Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI. It focuses on the need to fill ourselves with the Good News of Jesus Christ first before we can more effectively evangelize. We first need to invest in our own faith, "to fill our own reservoir so that we can nourish the fields and crops around us"; As opposed to simply channeling and redirecting our faith, let us overflow so as to not deplete our own spiritual "reservoir".
We need to think about the very purpose and mission of the Church, and what we are called to do and be as Catholics. To invest in our own faith...to fill our cups and let them overflow so that we may have an abundance to provide to others.
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