The recent Indiana Knights of Columbus State Convention was a great event for our State & the K of C Veterans Affairs functional area. We had a “Veterans Affairs” table at the Convention, which attracted the attention of many of the 370 registered brother knights and guests. These visitors to the veterans table received a copy of our State Veterans Affairs Plan executive summary (1 Page), as well as the opportunity to look through our “Veteran Knight Living History” book- that contained one-page biographies of 15 brother knight’s military and Catholic faith experiences. The “Good News” is that 24 veteran brother knights signed up to have “their story” added to our Indiana living history biography program- and I have already forwarded each of them the “Guide Template” for submitting their information, as well as 5 Sample Bio’s for reference/ ideas.
As part of the Convention’s Sunday, 11 April agenda, “Resolution #16 – Honoring Our Armed Forces” was passed unanimously. This resolution reviews the early history of the Knight’s support to US Armed Forces during the 1st World War – and then all the way to the present day, most notably with the distribution of 500,000 military prayer books to US & Canadian troops around the world. It goes on to praise those seminarians who have elected to join the long line of military chaplains serving our Armed Forces, and the unpaid K of C Volunteers assisting the US Veterans Administration under the “VAVS” (Veterans Administration Voluntary Service Program) showing our commitment to “serving those who have served”. Your Council/ Assembly should publicize the details of the 2021 State Convention Resolution #16 among your membership – and it can be found in the convention booklet that all convention delegates received.
I was personally very honored for the opportunity to address the convention on Sunday morning – and talk about the great progress made by Indiana in veterans affairs. We have now achieved “100% certified representation” with Knights of Columbus Rep’s/ Dep Rep’s at all 5 of our currently recognized State VA Medical Centers (Evansville, Marion, Indianapolis, Fort Wayne, and Crown Point). I was also glad to point out the progress being made in our efforts to reach the $5,200 Goal for the “Warriors to Lourdes” Program (as of 11 April – we are at 59% of Goal with $3,049 raised); and for the $5,000 Goal with the “Military Chaplain Scholarship Fund” (as of 11 April we are 57% of Goal with $2,840 raised).
While I have always been very honored for the opportunity to serve as the Indiana K of C Veterans Affairs Chairman – I was especially proud to talk with so many Knights about our military service members and veterans during this successful state convention at the Grand Wayne Center in Fort Wayne. I received several “Good Ideas” for the future from convention brother knights- as well as great discussions about our order and the good works being accomplished. Let us keep the momentum moving forward – and show the Knights of Columbus will “Leave No Veteran Behind” as we “Reconnect” after enduring a year+ of pandemic restrictions!
Steve Lutz PGK/ FDD
State Veterans Affairs Chairman