Beatification of our Founder, Father Michael McGivney
On May 26, 2020, Pope Francis approved a decree recognizing a miracle attributed to the intercession of Father McGivney and opening the way for his beatification. On Oct. 31, the Mass for Beatification was celebrated in the Cathedral of Saint Joseph in Hartford, Conn. An Apostolic Letter was read from Pope Francis that declared Father McGivney would now have the title of Blessed Michael McGivney. He is the third priest born in the United States to be raised to this honor, and the first priest to be beatified who spent his whole priestly ministry in a US parish.
The pope’s Apostolic Letter stated that Blessed Michael McGivney’s “zeal for the proclamation of the Gospel and generous concern for the needs of his brothers and sisters made him an outstanding witness of Christian solidarity and fraternal assistance.”
The Cause for Canonization for Father McGivney was opened in the Archdiocese of Hartford in 1997, when he was given the title Servant of God. On March 15, 2008, his heroic virtue was recognized by Pope Benedict XVI, and Father McGivney was given the title Venerable Servant of God. This important step occurred after years of careful investigation of Father McGivney’s life, spirituality and holiness by the Congregation for the Causes of Saints. The declaration of Venerable confirmed what those who knew him in life, and others who call upon him since his death, have believed about Father McGivney: He lived a life of heroic virtue with an extraordinary love of God and neighbor.
Having been raised to the honors of the altar, Blessed Michael McGivney has an annual feast day of Aug. 13, the day between his birthday (in 1852) and the he passed into eternal life (in 1890). His cause has now entered the final phase toward canonization or sainthood. One more confirmed miracle attributed to the intercession of Blessed Michael McGivney is needed for him to be declared saint.
Father McGivney's Path to Sainthood
A Message From Your KofC Insurance Field Agent - Michael McAndrew
Field Agent’s Council Message
In previous years, this is the time we may have been shopping for that special present, getting a tree and preparing to cook the traditional Christmas meal. This year will be different. Many will be reluctant to travel, so many may be celebrating with just the household instead of a house-full! Instead of crushes of people at the mall, our Christmas presents will be dropped at the front door by UPS, USPS or Amazon Prime. No 22 lb. turkey or ham this year for the family members visiting from far and wide; just a small one for the few of us. While this year may be different, it may get us to slow down a bit and perhaps savor the special time of year and what we really celebrate.
We turn our thoughts to themes of “Peace on Earth” and “Goodwill to Men!” We think of our Savior’s birth in Bethlehem and the beginning of this chapter of salvation history. We think of family, both the ones we celebrate with this year in person and those who might only be present on Zoom. But we’ll make it through the season; we’ll have even more to celebrate next year.
Each year I remind my readers of some important financial issues as we move through December and hit year end. As you slow down here are some financial issues to consider at the end of the calendar year.
1. Because we’re so late in the year, you may have met your individual or family deductible on your health insurance plan. Financially this may be the opportune time for some minor procedure to be scheduled; or that visit to a specialist you may have put off. The same is true about dental insurance and sometimes even for vision coverage.
2. Speaking of health insurance, do you have a Health Savings Account? Do you have to spend the money that’s in there by year end? Some plans have a “use it or lose it” feature. Do you have to make a decision about how much to contribute next year? These are a couple of time sensitive issues.
3. If you have earned income for the year, what amount will you want to contribute to your traditional IRA, Roth IRA or 401k? Are you eligible to contribute much more based on the “catch up” provision? You won’t have to make that contribution until you pay your taxes and that could be four months away; however now is the time to start making plans.
4. Speaking of IRAs, have you received your required minimum distribution for this year? If not, the Internal Revenue Service penalty is a hefty 50% of the amount you should have received!
All of these issues come with lots of rules and regulations, so don’t go it alone. Give me a call and I will be happy to discuss any of these issues…and you can do it safely, virtually with me on the computer from the comfort of your home.
As we prepare to celebrate the birth of Jesus, let us be thankful for all the graces God has showered on us, especially the gift of his Son, our Savior! “For a child is born to us, a son is given to us; upon his shoulder dominion rests. They name him Wonder-Counselor, God-Hero, Father-Forever, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:5
No Neighbor Left Behind
As communities around the world are confronting the COVID-19 pandemic, the Knights of Columbus is asking its vast volunteer network of members to help ensure that essential needs are met in communities from coast to coast.
For some individuals, buying essentials or leaving their homes to do so has become challenging. In addition, blood banks are in desperate need of donations. In response Supreme Knight Carl A. Anderson has urged Knights of Columbus across the country to donate blood and to come to the aid of their neighbors in communities nationwide as part of its new “Leave No Neighbor Behind” initiative.
Knights of Columbus are encouraged to assist:
• one another, especially the elderly and those living alone.
• their fellow parishioners and their pastors during a time when many churches are closed.
• their neighbors, who have particular needs at this time.
• the hungry, by donating to and volunteering at local food pantries and food banks.
• with blood donations, especially in response to current shortages.
In Line with this initiative, Councill 551 is currently asking for Donations for our local St. Vincent DePaul Food Pantry. Any amount is great appreciated and all funds will be given directly to the Food Pantry to aid them in buying necessary food for their clients. Please send donations to:
Knights of Columbus Council 551
Attn: Food Drive
PO Box 711
Altoona, PA 16603
We appreciate you and the support you provide to those in need during this time!