Grand Knight’s Holy Week Message
It has certainly been a bizarre Lenten season and I will not belabor you with more drivel about things you already know. I will say this: I was heartened to hear news today from Dr. Fauci (a Holy Cross Grad) and Gov. Cuomo that there is cause for optimism that New York is showing signs of reaching the apex. Let us focus our prayers this weekend that this is true, and we are turning the corner on this virus sooner than expected. And while there have been many examples of idiots out there who selfishly ignored the sound medical advice and exposed others to unnecessary risk, I am proud to observe that the vast majority of Americans are doing the right thing, not just for themselves, but for all of our neighbors, especially the elderly and most vulnerable among us.
I have only two short topics to cover in this message: (1) a guide to events for Holy Week that you can join in to make your Easter Weekend as spiritual and meaningful as you can from home; and (2) some words about our mission during this crisis and how we will conduct the upcoming meeting scheduled for next Tuesday, April 14th.
Schedule and Resources for Holy Week
Immaculate Conception Holy Week Schedule:
You will be able to view all the I.C. services live on one of these three internet channels, and if you miss one, most can be replayed for several days:
|(1)||YouTube Live Channel|
|(2)||Facebook Live Channel:|
|(3)||Streamhoster (fixed camera feed from the Upper Church):|
9:00 a.m. Morning Prayer
2:00 p.m. Stations of the Cross
3:00 p.m. Celebration of the Lord’s Passion
9:00 a.m. Morning Prayer
8:00 p.m. Easter Vigil
9:00 a.m. Mass
Fr. Steven’s Holy Week Messages
Fr. Steven has written two Holy Week pastoral letters and asked me to share them with the Council. You can click these links to read them:
Fr. Przemek Update
You can view a nice video from Fr. Przemek here: Fr. Przemek’s video message from Colombia
How we will fulfill our mission during this crisis
Our Supreme Council has been busy finding ways to help local councils cope with the pandemic and still function effectively. I have participated in several webinars and training sessions to get us equipped to handle it. Council #81 is meeting the challenge.
First of all, our State Council has adopted the Little Sisters of the Poor as the recipient of our charitable efforts during the crisis. The Little Sisters operate nursing homes for the poor in nearby Somerville and Pawtucket. They are in need of “PPE” (Personal Protective Equipment) including masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, disinfectant wipes and cleaning solutions, etc. Mike Gibson’s garage has been transformed into the drop-off station for the MetroWest area. If you have any of these items you can share, let Mike know (firstname.lastname@example.org) and leave it at his garage. If you have any inside leads to bulk supplies, please let us know. We have already collected and delivered a respectable amount of PPE, and undoubtedly contributed to saving lives.
Secondly, our meeting next Tuesday will be conducted by video conference. I have obtained an ezTalks account, and we have been trying it out and perfecting our production studio skills. It is almost identical to Zoom for those of you who are familiar with it.
In order for our meeting to be as effective as possible, I am asking each of you to get your computers or smartphones set up and ready in advance for the meeting. This video conference method will only work effectively if we have meaningful participation from everybody.
The instructions are fairly simple, and we have already successfully conducted four live sessions of the Rosary over the last two weeks. We have had 10 knights participate effectively, and only two had difficulty getting their sound settings tweaked correctly.
I will be home and can help you make a dry run to test out your equipment and get everything set up so everybody can participate effectively for a successful meeting. Just text me or call my cell phone 508-259-6390 when you are ready and I will open a meeting for a test. I can also walk you through a troubleshooting list if your camera or microphone or speakers aren’t working. Don’t wait until the last minute. There are peculiar settings that must be made to share the camera and microphone with the ezTalks app. For most of you, it will all happen automatically, but some of you may have clunky equipment, or conflicting programs running, and it will be frustrating if you try to log in to the meeting and can’t be seen or heard by others. So please run a test with me this weekend. If you are a total Luddite, you can simply call in with an ordinary telephone. But you’ll miss most of the fun.
The full instructions for logging on to ezTalks are printed below.
I will send the usual Grand Knight’s Blog a day or two before the meeting. If you have any news to report, or agenda items you wish to have addressed, please email GrandKnight@kofcmarlboro.org and I will get them in.
Mike Tremblay, GK
EZTalks Video Conferencing Instructions
You may wish to start logging in at least 5 minutes before the meeting to get set up if you have never used EZ Talks before.
Please click https://www.eztalks.com/j/23142811
You may be prompted to enter an 8 or 9-digit meeting number (It should appear automatically, but if not, enter the last 8 or 9 digits in the above link, i.e., 23142811). This will be our permanent meeting number for all Council meetings and business, so you can bookmark it.
Enter the name you wish to appear as to other participants. You can use a nickname. Don’t pick “Mike.”
A little check box will appear that says “Join with Computer Audio.” Make sure you check it. Otherwise, nobody will be able to hear you, and you will just be a silent spectator.
If this is your first time using ez-Talks, you will be prompted to install a small app called the ez-Talks Launcher. It takes less than a minute. Just click the link to download and install the ezTalks launcher. It all happens automatically. If you have previously used ezTalks, just click to “Open the ezTalks Launcher.”
The ezTalks Launcher Window should pop up automatically on your screen. However, if you have a clutter of windows open, you may not see it because it may be buried underneath some already open windows, so shrink all open windows with the (-) minus button to uncover it. Voila!
Make sure your camera lens isn’t covered with duct tape and your microphone and camera are turned on.
If you have trouble with the microphone or camera, first make sure the Video and Audio icons on the bottom left menu bar of the ezTalks launcher are turned on. They will have a red stripe through them if they are turned off. Just click the icon to turn them on and make the red stripe go away. If that doesn’t work, here are some quick pointers for Windows users to getting them turned on:
If you are using a Mac, you are on your own.
ONCE YOU ARE IN THE ezTALKS MEETING APP:
If you can’t see or hear yourself, look in the lower left corner of the app to see if you have “Video” or “Audio” icons with a red stripe, like this:
If so, just click the “Video” or “Audio” icons to turn on your camera and microphone.
If you click “Participants” on the bottom menu bar, you can see a list of other participants logged on to the meeting.
If you have a question, you can click “Chat” and send a little note to the meeting administrator without interrupting the whole meeting. Good for dumb questions.
If you prefer the “Zoom” video format (where you can see all participants), click the icon of little people’s heads to toggle to “Gallery View.” Just hover your mouse over the right side and the icon will appear, like this:
You can also toggle the diagonal arrows for full screen view.
If you are hopelessly technologically challenged, you may join the meeting by calling in by telephone. Just dial 1-201-439-8092 and enter the 8 or 9 digit meeting number.