What follows is a modified version of remarks I shared recently during the 120th Annual Meeting of the Indiana Knights of Columbus held recently in Fort Wayne.
My brother knights, you know the expectations. You know what needs to be done. So, I’m not going talk to you about needing to be Safe Environment compliant because you already know that. And I’m not going to tell you to get your Home Corp. paperwork in order because you already know that.
You also know the WATCH WORDS of our Order…Tempus fugit, Memento Mori…Times Flies, Remember Death! Remember Death! Death….Death, gentlemen, comes to ALL men and women. It’s a part of our journey that I was vividly reminded of on February 12th of this year.
According to former Beatle John Lennon, “Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans.” No one expects a life-altering global pandemic. No one plans to rebuild or relocate when twisters and thunderstorms rip through their neighborhood in the dead of night. And nobody can prepare themselves for a random phone call on a Friday afternoon in February when you learn that the love of your life needs to have her aortic heart valve replaced. In a flash my whole world turned upside down…I can only imagine how my wife felt.
Memento Mori! Remember Death! It. Is. Inevitable. Oh, in rare cases you may be able to postpone it. But in the end, you can’t cheat or beat it. So, here’s my next question. What will you do…what are you doing with this Divine gift that is your life? Let’s face it, ultimately, we’re all just short timers here. So, what will you do with your time…what will your legacy be…as a husband…a brother…a son…a knight?
My brother knights you have been given an incredible opportunity to impact the lives of everyone around you…with a random act of kindness…with words of comfort in times of heartache…and with quiet prayers in times of distress. If all you’ve ever done in your life is follow in someone else’s footsteps, isn’t it about time you began leaving footprints of your own. I say to you gentlemen…this life is short. So, when you have the chance to love…love. When you have the chance learn…learn. When you have the chance to teach…teach. And when you have the chance to lead…lead!
So, before you journey home this afternoon, I have a challenge for each of you. A challenge to live the four pillars of our order…A challenge to lift those around you, especially when it is most difficult…A pledge to touch a life.
You all came in here this weekend as Knights of Columbus, but I challenge all of you to leave here today as “Kings of Connection.” I challenge you to go home and connect with your family, connect with your friends, connect with your clergy, connect with your brother knights, and connect with your God!
Remember, “what you allow is what will continue”…”What you accept is what will become expected.” If we continue to accept mediocrity it will become what is expected, and that gentlemen is simply unacceptable !
Tempus Fugit, Memento Mori! Time Flies, Remember Death! Now go home and ENGAGE in this life…Kiss your wife…hug your kid…and stay safe. Vivat Jesus!!!
Thank you and Vivat Jesus!
Indiana State Council