Grand Knight’s Blog
Date: Tuesday, May 10, 2022
Time: 7:30 p.m. . . . . . . . . doors open at 7:00
Place: St. Matthias Parish Hall
Method: Live and in person
Activities and News Since Last Meeting
· Reminder: New Meeting Location
Remember, meetings will be at St. Matthias Parish Hall, 409 Hemenway Street, Marlborough, MA 01752 until further notice. This will be your last warning.
· Ultrasound Program
We launched the Ultrasound fundraiser at St. Mike’s on April 2nd and 3rd and had an incredible response. We really had no idea what to expect, but we did not expect to see the donations we obtained. We raised about $4,000 in cash, checks and credit card donations on Saturday and Sunday, but the Flyers we printed and posted in the church, and the little business cards with the QR code we handed out to people without their checkbooks handy, continued to work for us for several weeks. After three weeks, with almost no additional effort, we were up to about $8,700, more than 50% of our ultimate goal. Then we launched at I.C. on Mother’s Day weekend and were astounded again. We got a check for $2,500, four checks for $1,000; several for $500 and $250, and for the most part, the credit card charges were for $100 or more. People were genuinely grateful for an opportunity to participate in this venture. They thanked us as they forked over their money. What an amazing thing to see on the faces of people who wanted to step up and support life. It united us as Catholics and gave us valuable visibility which should help our efforts in the future.
As of today, we have surpassed our goal by almost double, and money continues to roll in today. Based on our history in Hudson, we expect money to continue to roll in for another few weeks.
I have a feeling that there were four principal factors contributing to our success:
(1) It was Mothers Day; (2) the leaked Supreme Court decision brought this topic to the tip of everybody’s tongue; (3) we had outstanding leadership from the program leader Mike Wells; and (4) we had very energetic support from our two pastors, Fr. Ren Tocci and Fr. Steven Clemence. They each gave us the opportunity to have a speaker after the Masses; good coverage in the parish bulletins; good bulletin board coverage for our flyers; and lots of real estate inside and outside the churches. Not to mention their own words of encouragement to the faithful.
Mike Wells and I discussed the needs of First Concern in getting this Ultrasound machine up and running, and we are suggesting we devote the surplus funds to: (1) buying a three-year service contract on the Ultrasound machine and rolling it into the purchase price; (2) paying for some of the renovations to their site to accommodate the machine; and (3) providing some security features to their space to protect their employees, i.e., electronic door locks, security cameras, panic alarms, etc. Mike and I both feel these purposes are consistent with our original intent and is the appropriate use the donors would want to see.
State Ultrasound Program Chairman Andy Vail was so amazed we accomplished this in two weekends he has asked Mike and I to write a “playbook” for other Councils and to mentor them on how to set up credit card processing and exploit our other most effective practices.
I want to express my gratitude to Mike Wells for his outstanding effort on this project.
I also want to thank our Knights who stood out after Masses and collected cash and checks.
Thanks too to Deacon Chuck Rossignol who mobilized the Pro-Life and Cenacle groups who helped us out.
This program should be our model from now on: how to plan, organize, and implement.
We should see a ribbon-cutting ceremony in the near future.
(L-R) Brendan Butler, Deacon Elcio dos Santos, Mike Wells, G.K. Mike Tremblay, First Concern Executive Director Megan Paradis).
Just in case you were not tuned in to the news and necessity of this project, I thought I would share a few things I learned over this weekend:
- There were 2,363 abortions each day in the United States last year. That’s over 800,000 a year. 20,000 in Massachusetts alone – we are obviously an “above average” state.
- While we don’t condone them, it’s understandable that many consider some abortions as necessary (ectopic pregnancies, partial miscarriages, threatened life of the mother, rape and incest, etc.), but those situations account for only about 50,000 abortions a year. That means that 750,000 were abortions of convenience, i.e., done because it was an available “option.”
- Megan Paradis, the director of First Concern, told me that one of the reasons they desperately need this Ultrasound machine is because they frequently refer their patients to local gynecology clinics or hospitals for Ultrasounds to learn valuable diagnostic information, like gestational age, size, health, etc. When they get there, many are in turn referred to Planned Parenthood for an abortion, especially the ones without health insurance, the youngest ones, i.e. the ones we should be supporting most of all.
- Over 80% of women who have an Ultrasound and are informed of the diagnostic data (gestational age, size, health, gender) decide to deliver their babies. Planned Parenthood has been criticized for withholding that information from the mothers, and laws in some states now actually require them to provide it.
Thank you again everybody, and congratulations on a job well done.
Programs and Upcoming Events
· Mike Gibson’s Campaign for State Warden
Don’t forget this Saturday is Mike Gibson’s “Friendship Dinner” to support his run for State Warden. Mark your calendars for May 14th at the Westborough K of C Hall at 6:30 to help Mike launch his campaign and defray costs. I personally selected the caterer, Dan Mauro of Buffet Way in Marlboro (the brother of our Knight Dennis Mauro) so I can vouch for the food to be good. I sincerely hope Council #81 provides significant support for our worthy past Grand Knight taking this important seat at the State headquarters.
· Fr. Steven’s Housecleaning Project
Fr. Steven has asked us to help out with some housecleaning. He has old televisions tubes, old boxes of junk, papers that need shredding, that need to be hauled to the city Recycling Day this Saturday. If you have a pickup truck and strong teenage son, or you’d like to help, please email GrandKnight@kofcmarlboro.org and I’ll assemble a crew and get you the information. It looks to be a Saturday morning event.
Other Meeting Agenda Items
· Prayers / Intentions:
Deacon Chuck is down with Covid and in quarantine. Please pray for an uneventful recovery.
I.C.’s former music director Roger Mansen (and the superlative organist at my wedding!) and his spouse Dorie, I.C.’s former Evangelization Director and School Committee member, and their two girls are also down with Covid. Please keep them in your prayers. One of the girls is having some breathing issues.
Please keep Craig Fallon, Mike’s son; Andy Tivnan; and the families of Phil Short and Fr. Mike McEwen in your prayers.
Please keep Mike Gibson’s father in your prayers also.
· Other business?
If you have an item to add to the agenda, please let me know.
If you have any news to report, email GrandKnight@kofcmarlboro.org.
See you all Tuesday night.
Mike Tremblay, Grand Knight