MESSAGE FROM STATE DEPUTY

 

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State Deputy’s Message for October 2016

 

                My Bothers, this is certainly an exciting time to be a Knight of Columbus in Vermont. I thank each of you who have helped your pastor or parish, your Brother Knights and their families, your communities and those in need whether flood victims or victims or terrorists during this past month. That is what we are here for. I wish to extend a special thank you to those Brother Knights who have extended a welcoming hand of friendship and fraternity to a fellow Catholic man during the past month and the first quarter of this fraternal year. Let me tell you why.

 

                By the end of September 2015 Vermont councils had taken in 8 new or reactivated members. By the end of September 2016 Vermont councils have taken in 36 new or reactivated members and are only 2 members away from the 25% mark on our quota for the year. This is especially impressive in the light of a couple other statistics. First, as a whole, recruiting worldwide has been down this year for the Order. And second, the months of July and August are traditionally the slowest months for recruiting due to the fact that many councils go into hibernation for the summer and vacations get in the way of otherwise good recruiting efforts.

 

                Vermont has some terrific incentives for recruiting new members this year, and while I hope as many of you as possible are able to take advantage of these, I do not believe that our members are recruiting merely to obtain prizes. We did not begin to get the word out about our incentives until well into July when we recruited twelve new members. And even in August when we brought in thirteen new members statewide I do not believe that the message about the incentives had really been heard by the vast majority of our members. I still believe that many, many members have not heard about our great incentives even though our recruiters found and ushered in another eleven members during September.

 

                I am submitting the list of incentives again this month as a reminder and perhaps as an eye-opener for those who have not yet seen it or have not studied it before. At least one council, Norwich, has already qualified for a 65% reduction in its second half per capita by already obtaining its membership quota for the year. We’re waiting for the Septembers results to be published by Supreme, but Council 4684 in Richmond is close and may have met its membership quota as well. Councils 642 in Middlebury, 917 in Brattleboro, 2284 in Winooski, 7525 in South Burlington, 7943 in Troy, and 10241 in Bethel are well on their way to obtaining their membership quotas and are all in the running for at least a 50% reduction in their second half per capita billing. At least one member has qualified for a trip to the State Convention on the State Council’s dime as well as an $80 give card and Vermont Development Drive 365 coffee mug.  I congratulate each of these councils and all of their recruiters for being a shining example of the Catholic organization and man with which good Catholic men wish to be associated.

 

                Here is one final set of statistics which you may find interesting. As I visited councils around Vermont last year one of the things I discussed at nearly all my visits was the number of Honorary Life members (over 70 years old and with at least 25 years of service in the K of C) in those councils, and the additional number of members over 70 who had less than 25 years. In many of our councils the percentages of these older members is high and has been high for years. Over 25% of all members in Vermont are Honorary Life members, a very high percentage indeed.

 

I just received a report from Supreme which shows that the average age of a member of the Vermont K of C is 63.33 years. HOWEVER, and this is the surprising – almost staggering – news, the report also shows that the average age of members brought into the Order in Vermont over the past twelve months is just 35.9 years. We are recruiting a very large number of young Catholic men. Why? I believe that these are JPII generation men who are looking for meaning to fill the void of an otherwise shallow existence. And while we may not be the only game in town, we are the BEST game in town to offer these men what they – what we all – need: a purpose, and a means to serve God, Church, community, and country.

 

October is the month of the Fall Church Membership Drive. Please do not miss this opportunity to make your pitch at your council’s churches, personal pitches about how the Knights of Columbus has changed your life. Follow these up with an open house with plenty of photos and stories about how your council has helped the parish, its youth, the community, and each other. Hold Admission Degrees and welcome these men into the Order. Get them to the Formation and Knighthood Degrees scheduled around the state. And don’t forget to hold your 5th Sunday Rosary.

 

I urge each Council to schedule Masses for deceased K of C members and their families during the month of November, a month when we traditionally pray for the dead. It is the very best that we can do for our departed Brothers. And finally,

 

                Thank you all for all you do. Vivat Jesus!

 

 

State Deputy’s Message for October 2016

 

                My Bothers, this is certainly an exciting time to be a Knight of Columbus in Vermont. I thank each of you who have helped your pastor or parish, your Brother Knights and their families, your communities and those in need whether flood victims or victims or terrorists during this past month. That is what we are here for. I wish to extend a special thank you to those Brother Knights who have extended a welcoming hand of friendship and fraternity to a fellow Catholic man during the past month and the first quarter of this fraternal year. Let me tell you why.

 

                By the end of September 2015 Vermont councils had taken in 8 new or reactivated members. By the end of September 2016 Vermont councils have taken in 36 new or reactivated members and are only 2 members away from the 25% mark on our quota for the year. This is especially impressive in the light of a couple other statistics. First, as a whole, recruiting worldwide has been down this year for the Order. And second, the months of July and August are traditionally the slowest months for recruiting due to the fact that many councils go into hibernation for the summer and vacations get in the way of otherwise good recruiting efforts.

 

                Vermont has some terrific incentives for recruiting new members this year, and while I hope as many of you as possible are able to take advantage of these, I do not believe that our members are recruiting merely to obtain prizes. We did not begin to get the word out about our incentives until well into July when we recruited twelve new members. And even in August when we brought in thirteen new members statewide I do not believe that the message about the incentives had really been heard by the vast majority of our members. I still believe that many, many members have not heard about our great incentives even though our recruiters found and ushered in another eleven members during September.

 

                I am submitting the list of incentives again this month as a reminder and perhaps as an eye-opener for those who have not yet seen it or have not studied it before. At least one council, Norwich, has already qualified for a 65% reduction in its second half per capita by already obtaining its membership quota for the year. We’re waiting for the Septembers results to be published by Supreme, but Council 4684 in Richmond is close and may have met its membership quota as well. Councils 642 in Middlebury, 917 in Brattleboro, 2284 in Winooski, 7525 in South Burlington, 7943 in Troy, and 10241 in Bethel are well on their way to obtaining their membership quotas and are all in the running for at least a 50% reduction in their second half per capita billing. At least one member has qualified for a trip to the State Convention on the State Council’s dime as well as an $80 give card and Vermont Development Drive 365 coffee mug.  I congratulate each of these councils and all of their recruiters for being a shining example of the Catholic organization and man with which good Catholic men wish to be associated.

 

                Here is one final set of statistics which you may find interesting. As I visited councils around Vermont last year one of the things I discussed at nearly all my visits was the number of Honorary Life members (over 70 years old and with at least 25 years of service in the K of C) in those councils, and the additional number of members over 70 who had less than 25 years. In many of our councils the percentages of these older members is high and has been high for years. Over 25% of all members in Vermont are Honorary Life members, a very high percentage indeed.

 

I just received a report from Supreme which shows that the average age of a member of the Vermont K of C is 63.33 years. HOWEVER, and this is the surprising – almost staggering – news, the report also shows that the average age of members brought into the Order in Vermont over the past twelve months is just 35.9 years. We are recruiting a very large number of young Catholic men. Why? I believe that these are JPII generation men who are looking for meaning to fill the void of an otherwise shallow existence. And while we may not be the only game in town, we are the BEST game in town to offer these men what they – what we all – need: a purpose, and a means to serve God, Church, community, and country.

 

October is the month of the Fall Church Membership Drive. Please do not miss this opportunity to make your pitch at your council’s churches, personal pitches about how the Knights of Columbus has changed your life. Follow these up with an open house with plenty of photos and stories about how your council has helped the parish, its youth, the community, and each other. Hold Admission Degrees and welcome these men into the Order. Get them to the Formation and Knighthood Degrees scheduled around the state. And don’t forget to hold your 5th Sunday Rosary.

 

I urge each Council to schedule Masses for deceased K of C members and their families during the month of November, a month when we traditionally pray for the dead. It is the very best that we can do for our departed Brothers. And finally,

 

                Thank you all for all you do. Vivat Jesus!

 
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