According to the Knights’ website, the Men of the Word study will invite Cor participants “to take up the ‘sword of the Spirit’ and rediscover the power of Scripture.”
“In many ways, it’s a challenging time, but it’s also a great time to be a Catholic and to be a Catholic man,” Kelly said. “Men have an innate desire for a life of mission, a life of meaning and mission. And I think to the extent that the Knights can work with the Church and provide that mission, we really give men a sense of who they are and a sense of fulfillment.”
The past year has been a great year for recruiting new Knights of Columbus, according to Kelly.
Kelly, who joined the Knights at age 19 while he was in college, said that reaching more young men remains a “huge priority” for the order.
“It’s hard to be Catholic on a college campus these days,” Kelly added. “It’s very, very important because a lot of our young people get talked out of the faith while they’re in college.”
“We, the Knights,” Kelly said, “want to do something to keep them in the faith, for they understand that being Catholic is something really important and you’re giving your life to something very meaningful, you’re embracing a life that has tremendous meaning to it.”
When it comes to young Knights, Kelly said that “many young people are attracted to the Knights because of the charity that we do.”
“I think a lot of millennials and younger people are very attracted to serving others, and that’s something that the Knights of Columbus provide,” he said. “So, we are seeing very good signs of growth among younger men.”
Among all the Knights’ charity work, Kelly said that pro-life work is central to the work of the Knights of Columbus.
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Since the overturn of Roe v. Wade, the Knights have redoubled their efforts to protect life from abortion. The Knights have donated more than 1,700 ultrasound machines to pregnancy centers across the country and raised $6 million for local pregnancy resource centers in the last year through their Aid and Support After Pregnancy (ASAP) initiative.
Kelly said that pregnancy centers are “where the real rubber meets the road on the pro-life issue.”
“The young, vulnerable mother who’s pregnant, she needs help,” Kelly said. “She can get that help from these fabulous pregnancy centers around the country that can provide her with counseling, assistance, and material aid. So, the Knights, we try to be right there with the pregnancy centers and maternity homes.”
Though they have not officially set a new fundraising goal for ASAP, Kelly said that they “would like to do $5 million every year to pregnancy centers.”
As legislative battles over abortion rage in states across the country, Kelly said that the Knights are just as committed as ever to defending the unborn through “get out the vote” campaigns as well as state and national marches.
Special efforts to raise awareness about the sanctity of life are being made in Ohio, where a state constitutional amendment to enshrine abortion into law will be on the ballot this November.