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Saturday, September 30, 2017

State Deputy Message - September

September 2017 

Brother Knights, 

I hope you each had a safe and enjoyable Labor Day weekend. As you know, many of our Brothers in Texas and Louisiana spent their time serving in their communities with the relief and recovery efforts after Hurricane Harvey struck. 

Your State Council in conjunction with the Arizona Knights of Columbus Charity Inc. donated directly to the Texas State Council Disaster Fund. I encourage all Councils and members to support the Supreme Council’s Disaster efforts with a donation to the Supreme Disaster Fund. You can find the information on the Supreme Website at www.kofc.org. 

Labor Day too many still represents a day to honor the workers; those who perform the labor of our Nation. We honor the factory workers, the farm workers, those in construction trades and in service to others. Many of us are or have been a laborer at some point in our life. 

Like our Brothers in Texas, Louisiana, and soon to be in Puerto Rico and the Southeast, Knights have a long history of service in the form of manual labor to our Parishes, communities, and families. This is our proud heritage. 

Labor Day now also means the end of Summer, although in Arizona it is hard to equate this as we are still hot and schools started weeks ago. But, now that Summer and Labor Day are over it is time to return to work. 
We need to refocus on two major activities. We need to select and implement programs that will serve the Domestic Church and build our Parishes, and we need to recruit more new members to help us in these programs. At the same time, let’s ignite the feelings of those that are thinking about leaving the Knights of Columbus. Our retention efforts are as important as recruiting. Men joined us for a reason, often to be involved with projects. Let’s find out how to bring them back and get them involved as well. 

Our Fast Start recruiting program did not start fast in July as we hoped but August was great. We surpassed the August goal set by our Supreme Knight for Arizona of recruiting one more member than any August in the last 5 years. Soon 6 Councils will each receive a check for $100 for their efforts. Fast Start runs through September. Watch for a message from our State Membership Chairman Kevin McCarthy and get involved. 

District Deputies need to make sure the Form 450 is submitted for every degree in his district, even if he cannot attend them. Prizes are also awarded based on First Degree Exemplifications but we pull the information from Supreme, so get those turned in and copy us. 

Another exciting activity for us will soon be in full swing. As I mentioned before, State Program Director Larry Powers and his Program Chairman will begin proving messages on a regular basis about Domestic Church and state-wide programs to assist the Councils in planning their efforts. These are designed to supplement and compliment but not replace your traditional Council service projects. 

To this end, if your Council has not received a supply of the 2017-2018 Fraternal Leader Success Planner let your DD know. He will make a list and push it up to his ASO. We promoted this at the Organizational meeting and asked you to use this tool in planning and tracking your activities. We need to know if you have them yet. Septembers’ featured program is Coats for Kids. Some Councils in Arizona do participate in this program. Many find another needed Youth Program to use in place of Coats for Kids. The point is, do something. 

It is not too early to start working toward Star Council and Star District. Just as in recruiting, you won’t make your goal in the first three months of the Fraternal Year, but if you don’t get a good start, you may certainly miss your chances by the end of the year. Avoid the June rush and complete your programs and membership growth before State Convention. 
For many years Supreme has required State Deputies, State Advocates, Grand Knights, and Youth Directors to complete the required Safe Environment program. This year completion of these is now a requirement for Star Council and for Circle of Honor. If Grand Knights are not aware of this program contact State Advocate Luigi Baratta for details. This is in addition to your Diocese requirements. 

By time most of you read this the deadline for supporting the Arizona Rosary Celebration by purchasing ads in the Program Book will have passed. Current reports show a very disappointing response. Program Ad sales are the single largest financial contributor to the costs of the events. To avoid being in the red for this event we need you to attend and encourage as many as possible to attend as well. Most importantly, when we make the plea for donations during these events I ask each to give very generously. Future Rosary Celebrations may depend on this year. It would be sad to see a setback in the 42-year history of this glorious public display of community prayer. We want to grow the event to reach more people with the Rosary of our Lady and the promises, not make is smaller. 

Are you ready for training? Supreme has monthly Webinars on a wide variety of topics to assist Officers as well as members gain additional training and information to allow them to better perform their duties. Our State Training Coordinator Bob Julien is working with our Supreme MPC to schedule in person training sessions the week of October 9-14th. Once the locations are announced, plan to attend a session near you. With a state as large as Arizona we won’t be able to have close locations every time. We are actively working to schedule additional sessions several times this year. 

Finally, I want to thank each of you for living the lessons we learned in our Ceremonials. Those that are only First Degree or Second Degree Knights, make a commitment to yourself to complete the stages to become a full Knight. 

Yes, we are known by our badges, by our shirts, by our Logo, but we are mostly known in our Parishes and communities by the charitable and service work we perform and by the example of our actions as Catholic Gentlemen. Many around us know we are Knights even if we are not wearing the Emblem of the Order. They either respect us for how we act, or condemn us because of actions by a small few. Let’s all continue to earn and maintain that respect. You, your families, and Fr. Michael McGivney deserve nothing less. 

Vivat Jesus, 

Sean Halpain 

Arizona State Deputy 


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