Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of April 10, 2000
Flood of chalices descends on Knights
By ANH HOANG
WCR Staff Writer
Ask and you shall receive.
When the St. Joseph's Assembly of the fourth degree Knights of Columbus put out the word they needed old or unused chalices and ciboria for priests in Nigeria, they got more than they expected.
"I thought we'd get a few," said Gordon Buzinsky, who heads the program. "I didn't expect we'd get a flood."
What surprised Buzinsky the most was the influx of donations from Prince Rupert, B.C., to Kirkfield, Ont.
"People are hearing about this from all over and they're sending us (chalices) and money as well," he said.
The request was made in early March following an appeal by Nigerian Father Innocent Onyewuenyi, a professor at the University of Nigeria in Nsukka. With 4,000 seminarians, many of the newly-ordained priests from this Third World country could not afford chalices for use at their ordinations and later ministry.
"(Onyewuenyi) asked us if we could get him some (chalices), even used ones," Buzinsky said. "I was sure there are used ones kicking around somewhere . . . from retired priests or ones who have died.
"We're finding that they're coming from all over. We didn't think we'd get such a response. It's more than we thought we'd get."
More than 50 chalices, ciboria, patens and pyx and $1,000 in donations have been sent to the Society of St. Peter the Apostle in Ontario where they will be sorted and refurbished before being sent to Nigeria and other Third World countries. At least another half dozen chalices are on their way to Ontario this week.
"And they're still coming in," Buzinsky said.
Some of the chalices have inscriptions and date back several decades, Buzinsky said. Although most of them require some refurbishing work, a few only need a good cloth shining.
"This was stuff sitting in a cupboard somewhere," Buzinsky said. "Now it can be put to good use."