Building a Culture of Life - 63rd and 64th Ultrasounds

By: Gary Merritt - Fri, Aug 14, 2020 1:10 PM

Prince of Peace Council #15337, Muskegon and George J. McCarthy Council #2975 have Taken Action in Building a Culture of Life through their initiatives to fund the installation of the 63rd and 64th MI KC sponsored ultrasound units.


Prince of Peace Council #15337 dedicated their unit for the Muskegon Pregnancy Services on July 21, 2020 including remarks by Debra Null, Executive Director, Muskegon Pregnancy Services; Grand Knight 15337 Scott Edgar; State Life Director, Ed Strach and State Warden, Jim Kraus. 


63 ultra 1


The prayers and blessing of the Ultrasound were presided by Fr. Godfrey Onyekwere pastor of Prince of Peace Parish of Muskegon. State Warden Jim Kraus spoke on the importance of the ultrasound initiative and how we in Michigan can be proud that we have provided 63 of these units of the over 1,000 that have been donated throughout the order.


63 ultra 2




A sincere thanks for the Prince of Peace Council #15337, Grand Knight, Scott Edgar and Deputy Grand Knight, Scott Greinger as lead council and other councils including San Jaun Bautise Council #9802, Muskegon; St. Our Lady of White Lake Council #12985, Montague; Fathers Rudy and Clem Council #13035, Muskegon and Holy Rosary Council #13579, Muskegon Heights.




 A week later on July 28th, George J. McCarthy Council #2975, of Grand Haven dedicated the 64th unit to Positive Options pregnancy center in Grand Haven. 


The opening prayers and thanks were presented by Fr. David Gross, pastor St. Mary Parish, Spring Lake. Fr. David’s prayer included that the “gifts of ultrasound will open the hearts and minds of life”.


64 ultra 1


Current District Deputy #304 Jeff Van Natter led all in the Pledge of Allegiance to begin the ceremony with GR Membership Director, FDD Bill Bernesser serving as emcee.


Chris Irwin, Youth Minister at St. Mary’s, described the origins of this ultrasound on their return trip from the March for Life in Washington with the youth groups of St. Mary’s and St. Patrick’s (Grand Haven) parishes.


Other comments and thanks were given by Carloyn Doyle, Executive Director of Positive Options, Shelly Hollar Director Positive Options Grand Haven location, and State Family Director Garret Kelenske. State Deputy Walter Winkle spoke of how the ultrasound units are one of the swords we use in our battle against abortion in our communities.


64 utra 2


A sincere thanks to the George J. McCarthy Council #2975 as lead council and other supporting councils for their initiatives to make this Ultrasound Initiative become a reality.


As we continue to Build a Culture of Life through the pathways of Prayer, Taking Action, Standing Up and Giving, let our councils and families give thanks to our Lord Jesus Christ for our actions.

Message from our State Deputy Walter Winkle

By: Gary Merritt - Fri, Aug 14, 2020 1:07 PM

"Make the Most of this Offer"


 Worthy Grand Knights, I pray that all is well with you, your members, and their families. We are all experiencing the effect of the Covid-19 in one way or another. Some may have lost a job, been laid off, or canceled several of the fund-raising events that were carefully planned and counted on to be able to fraternalize with our brothers and to continue to help the needy in your area. Most importantly the possibility that we might have lost a friend or loved one to this Virus. I ask that you continue to pray to the end of the turmoil that in one way or another, has affected us all. Participating in the Leave no Neighbor Behind Program is more important than ever during these times!


 Attached you will find the councils that have achieved the Star Council Award from Supreme. I want to congratulate all those councils that have achieved the pinnacle of success within the Knights of Columbus by attaining this award! The Grand Knights, Membership Directors and members of these councils have shown outstanding leadership and I ask that you strive to attain this award again during this fraternal year! For those councils that did their best to accomplish this but did not make it, I ask that you continue to ask members to be part of your support to our churches across Michigan. To help you reach your goals to success, Supreme has lowered the membership quota from 7% to 5% of your membership and the maximum for any council is 20! This has not been this low in the last 15 years. Supreme has also changed the Insurance quota to having two fraternal benefit nights during the year. Please contact your Field Agent for more information.  


 As of today, and until the end of the month, Supreme has extended the free membership in honor of the Beatification of our founder, Fr. Michael J. McGivney!  What an excellent time to welcome a new member and his family to join your council, joining an order that was founded by a parish priest who no less will be a saint someday soon. Please go to and welcome him as an E-Member first. Enter MCGIVNEY2020 for the code. He will be able to then watch the Exemplification on demand or ask him to attend a live Degree put on by your Council or District Degree Staff.  I ask that you contact your Council Chaplain or Priest this weekend or next and ask if you can proclaim during the announcements this great news of the Beatification of Fr. McGivney and in honor of this news, we are offering the free membership and explain how to join. I have been attending several masses around the state and noticed that some are being videotaped, this would be the perfect time to do this as these tapings will be shown on the parish website for all to see!

 God Bless You All, Walter Winkle Jr. State Deputy

 Rise Up and Answer the Call! 

  Thanks to the 101 Council that achieved Supreme Star status during the 2019/2020 fraternal year.

Let's all set our sights on obtaining Star Council status for our councils this year.


Interview with Director of Development MI RTL

By: Gary Merritt - Mon, Aug 3, 2020 1:11 PM

To continue Building a Culture of Life an interview took place with Brian Cusack, Director of Development, Michigan Right to Life. 


This is the beginning of Rise Up and Answer the Call Life series which focuses on Building the Culture of Life. This interview focused on three main topics:


1) Dismemberment petition drive comments


2} Primary and general elections


3) RTL Banquet status - September 23, 202


 It is our hope you find this interview insightful as we continue to Build a Culture of Life. 


 To view this interview click on the photo below.


Strach & Cusak


 Ed & Lynn Strach Pro-Life Couple  Michigan State Council Knights of Columbus 


Miracle attributed to Fr. McGivney

By: Gary Merritt - Tue, Jul 28, 2020 1:14 PM

Parents: Baby miraculously cured in utero by

   Fr. McGivney, now 5, ‘has changed our life’

DICKSON, Tenn. (CNS) -- Mikey Schachle, 5 years old, climbs onto a stump in the yard of his family's home in Dickson.

He carefully takes stock of the short distance to the trampoline buried in the ground below him, then slowly steps off the stump into space and falls happily onto the trampoline as some of his 12 brothers and sisters surround him with smiles and hugs.

It's a scene that would have been impossible for his parents, Dan and Michelle Schachle, to imagine five years ago when they sat in a doctor's office to hear that their still unborn son had zero chance of living more than a few days or weeks.

It took a miracle to save Mikey. 

Mickey Schachle & parents

 Mickey Schachle

                   On May 27, Pope Francis approved the promulgation of a decree recognizing Mikey's cure from a deadly case of fetal hydrops while still in his mother's womb as a miracle attributed to the intercession of Father Michael J. McGivney, founder of the Knights of Columbus. With the approval of the miracle, Father McGivney, who now has the title of "Venerable," will be beatified and receive the title "Blessed."

 Fr McGivney Portrait  

I think God had a plan for Father McGivney. I think God had a plan for Michael," Dan Schachle said of his son's miraculous cure. "You have to be open to God's grace, you have to be open to God's plan, because if you're not open to God's plan, he can't use you."

You may read the entire Article from Detroit Catholic  

Steps to Sainthood

Fr McGivney Beatification Date

By: Gary Merritt - Sun, Jul 26, 2020 1:12 PM

Fr McGivney Portrait Fr. Michael McGivney, the founder of the Knights of Columbus Catholic fraternal organization, will be beatified on October 31, 2020 the Congregation for the Causes of Saints announced this week.  The congregation made the announcement July 20.


A miracle credited to the intercession of McGivney was approved by the Vatican and announced by Pope Francis on May 27. A child who was diagnosed as terminally ill in the womb was miraculously healed following prayers for the intercession of Fr. McGivney. 

The priest’s beatification Mass is expected to be celebrated in his native Connecticut. 

McGivney founded the Knights of Columbus in New Haven, Connecticut, 1882. Initially, the organization was intended to assist widows and their families upon the deaths of their husbands. It has grown into a worldwide Catholic fraternal order, with more than 2 million members carrying out works of charity and evangelization across the globe. The Knights also offer life insurance policies to their members. 

In 2018, the Knights’ 16,000 councils worldwide donated more than $185 million to charity and gave over 76 million hours of hands-on service in 2018, worth over $1.9 billion according to a valuation of volunteer work by the Independent Sector. Their volunteer work included support for the Special Olympics, coat drives, and food drives for needy families. 

Between 2017 and 2018, the Knights raised and delivered $2 million for the Iraqi town of Karamles; the Knights have helped Christian survivors of the ISIS genocide in the town resettle in their homes and rebuild for the future. 

In an audience granted to Supreme Knight Carl Anderson earlier this year, Pope Francis praised the organization’s “particular faithful witness to the sacredness and dignity of human life, evident at both the local and national levels.”

He also noted the Knights’ dedication to aiding, “both materially and spiritually, those Christian communities in the Middle East that are suffering the effects of violence, war and poverty.”

“In our world, marked by divisions and inequalities, the generous commitment of your Order to serve all in need offers, especially to young people, an important inspiration to overcome a globalization of indifference and build together a more just and inclusive society,” Francis said in February.

Beatification, being declared “blessed” by the Church, is the final step of recognition before a person can be declared a saint.

McGivney will become the fourth U.S.-born man to be beatified, joining Bl. Stanley Rother, Bl. James Miller, and Bl. Solanus Casey. 

While the Church has recognized three women born in the United States as saints--St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, St. Katharine Drexel, and St. Kateri Tekawitha--there have been no  U.S.-born canonized men.

The Vatican also announced this week that the beatifications of two others, Benigna Cardoso and Fr. Giuseppe Ambrosoli, will be postponed due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Their beatifications had previously been scheduled for October 21 and November 22, respectively. Cardoso was set to be beatified in Brazil, one of the hotspots of the virus, and Ambrosoli in Uganda, where he served as a missionary priest.

Catholic News

July 2020 MI Columbian

By: Gary Merritt - Tue, Jul 14, 2020 1:18 PM

Mi Columbian logo

To view the latest Michigan Columbian click on the above logo.

Our Local Councils in Action

By: Gary Merritt - Wed, Jul 1, 2020 1:23 AM

 To promote the activities of our local councils around the State, various council programs will be posted here.

 Send your stories of worthy council programs along with pics to


Iron River Council 2300 Iron River

Knights cleaned and painted the Iron County Ice Arena in Caspian in preparation for the opening hockey game of the season.

St. Michael Council 13799 Sterling Heights 

wreaths across amer The council donated $1,000 to Wreaths Across America to sponsor the placement of wreaths on the graves of veterans at Resurrection Cemetery in Clinton Township. Council members also assisted in laying the wreaths.

Pope John XXIII Assembly 1536 Plymouth

The council sponsored a coat collection for veterans. Over a period of three weeks, Knights and family members collected, sorted and delivered more than 600 coats to several veterans’ service organizations in southeastern Michigan.

St. Francis Council 13958 Traverse City


The council sponsored a “piggy raffle” to raise funds for Knights of Columbus Coats for Kids®. A local high school student donated the hog, which he raised as part of a 4-H project. Members drew two winning tickets; the pig was butchered and the winners split the pork. The council used the proceeds to donate more than 60 coats and 30 snow pants to The Father Fred Foundation, a Traverse City nonprofit offering food, clothing and financial assistance to local people in need.

   St. Sebastian Council 14642 Byron Center &

Pope John Paul II Council 13760 Wyoming

Knights from both councils worked together to hold a Christmas breakfast at Holy Name of Jesus Parish. Members bought and prepared breakfast for a record 400 people and distributed gifts to the children, raising $500 for Council 13760’s projects.

St. Stephen Council 15691 Grand Rapids

15691 grounds work

Members of the Council at St. Stephens Parish spent a warmest morning of the year spreading mulch, trimming trees and bushes and cleaning up around the church and school grounds. Father Scott Nolan and transitional Deacon Noah Thelen pitched in also. In the pictures you will notice the Priest working and the Deacon trying to figure which end of the pitchfork to use lol.

 Bishop Allen J. Babcock Council 7341 Caledonia

fireworks food drive

Holy Family Church provides a great viewing area for the community fireworks display allowing everyone to use their parking lot which is next to the launch site.

Admission to the lot was a non-perishable food item which the members of the parish Knights collected and donated to the food pantry.

Over 500 pounds of food along with monetary donations of over $400.00 were collected in this unique & fun program to feed the hungry in the local area.

Msgr. Victor Gallagher Council 12668 Reed City

12668 Pro Life Bench

One of the projects this Council has been working on is 2 Pro Life benches to be placed at St. Ann and Mt. Olivet Cemetery's locally. The Knights belong to St Philip Neri parish in Reed City.

The dedication and Blessing will take place on Sunday July 5, 2020.

 Michigan Technological University Council 17237 Houghton

 17237 confer College Knights and their council chaplain, Father Dustin Larson, distribute information and recruit members at SLS20: You Were Made for Mission, a youth conference presented by the Fellowship of Catholic University Students. Nearly 9,000 people, including more than 4,500 college students, attended the five-day event in Phoenix,AZ.