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IWKnights Corner For November 8, 2020

Did you know this about the IW Knights of Columbus?

Father James Sullivan is the current rector of the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception in Waterbury, Conn., where Father McGivney grew up in the 1800s. (Image by Christopher Beauchamp)

In this Part 2, we pick-up the story of a Connecticut priest named Father James Sullivan who holds a lifelong devotion to Father Michael McGivney, founder of the Knights of Columbus.

“Father Sullivan was also active with the local Knights of Columbus council — his work included establishing a vocation program in honor of Father McGivney, as well as helping place a kneeler embedded with a relic of Father McGivney at St. Thomas Church.

But after 25 years, Sullivan again felt the calling to the priesthood. He believes that his response to that call was impacted by his family’s devotion to Father McGivney.

‘My sister who is a nun, Sister Veronica, truly had a vision of Father McGivney,’ he said.

Sister Veronica is a member of the Sisters of Life.  She was inspired to pray to Father McGivney after another brother, Dennis, had a massive heart attack and was at risk for severe brain damage.  Having previously worked as a cardiac nurse, Sister Veronica understood the severity of Dennis’s condition.  Immediately, she turned to Father McGivney —and she says that she heard the holy priest’s voice respond.

Dennis would live another 12 years.  And in gratitude, Sister Veronica and her mother began regularly offered prayers and planting flowers at the McGivney family grave at St. Joseph’s Cemetery in Waterbury.  Father Sullivan thinks their prayers included petitions for his own vocation.

‘My mother visited Father McGivney’s parents’ grave and planted flowers there for years. Just like every parent who prays for their children, I believe my mother — through the intercession of Father McGivney’s parents — was praying for her children.’

‘And so I wouldn’t be surprised if my mother and my sister prayed for Father McGivney and his parents’ intercession on my behalf,’ he continued.

Last summer, Father Sullivan was present during the exhumation of Father McGivney’s remains, a process required during the beatification process.  The experience, he said, was ‘one of the most significant moments of my life.’

How could it be anything else? Father McGivney, that humble priest from Connecticut has inspired Sullivan throughout his whole life.  And according to Father Sullivan, it’s that humility, above all else, that makes Father McGivney special.

‘Everything sprang from there,’ he said. ‘He emptied himself and he lived for the people. His priesthood was one of service, not about himself.  Because of that, great fruit was born!  If he didn’t have that, nothing else would’ve happened.”

Want to learn more about Father McGivney’s legacy and influence on people around the world? Visit kofc.org/beatification.”

You can link to the full article presented above via one of the following sites.  Also, find more about the Knights of Columbus at  IWKnights9981.com/bulletin or in facebook.com/IWknights9981 and NOW on Twitter at twitter.com/IwKnights.

Links Related to this week’s column:

From lifesaving miracles, visions and more, Father James Sullivan says his vocation – and his family’s lives — was changed due to Father McGivney.
By Andrew Fowler - Knights of Columbus  (10/26/2020)
Click here for Article
Sainthood Cause of Blessed Fr. Michael McGivney
Official Website
By Knights of Columbus  (2020)
Click here for Article
Prayer for Protection in Time of Pandemic
A Novena which seeks Our Lady’s Intercession for Protection in Time of Pandemic
By His Holiness, Pope Francis (3/2020)
Click here for the Prayer

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We would like to talk with you about becoming an IW Knight.  Please visit us on-line at our web site at www.IWknights.com/AboutUs.  Or call Rob Schultz at: (314) 973-2373.

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