Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of April 28, 2003
Council gets everyone involved
Calgary's Fr. Newman Council is tops for fraternal activies
By RAMON GONZALEZ
WCR Staff Writer
Last year they spent close to 3,000 volunteer hours doing volunteer work for the Church and community. They performed over 30 activities and raised almost $25,000. In the process they helped strengthen the unity of the council, the Church and the family.
In recognition of their efforts, the members of Father Albert Newman Council at St. Patrick's Parish here last year received the Alberta award for the most fraternal council. And for leading such a capable group, Dale Scully, the council's grand knight last year, won the knight of the year award for 2002.
"This council is a very active council and they have numerous fraternal activities that they put on and as such they create a great fraternal atmosphere for not only their members but for the district as well," said State Deputy Leo Klein. "It's a well-deserved award.
"They have done an awful lot in terms of creating a family atmosphere. Every council has a number of activities but last year, in picking Father Albert Newman as the fraternal council of the year, we felt they had demonstrated that through their various program and activities that they had throughout the year."
Scully said winning the fraternal award was truly a team effort. "We had about 30 knights involved in each activity."
The activities were many and ranged from a monthly church pancake breakfast to a monthly dinner and dance for the whole family. That year the council also helped 15 people who were in need and got involved in the Magic of Christmas project - a charity that distributes Christmas gifts and hampers.
"And we are just generally very active in the Church in terms of participating in different fundraising and different things for the Church itself," Scully said. "We've got about 156 members and out of that about 40 per cent are very, very active and we very much get everybody involved, especially the new members because we know that 'If you don't use them, you'll lose them.'"
What makes the Father Albert Newman Council special?
"I think it's the dedication and the commitment of our council members," Scully said. Apart from the monthly pancake breakfast and the dance, the council also organizes several other social activities throughout the year, including a St. Patrick's Day dance, a lobster fest in August and a Polar Bear BBQ in January.
"Everything is a fundraiser if we can raise funds; if we can't, well, then we have a community thing, right?" said David Whitty, the current grand knight.
"We visit the sick; we help the parish priest in anything he wants to do around the parish, we are very active," added Whitty. "All the knights are very involved in the parish. We have a guy that takes Communion to the sick every day. And we are all involved in a fundraiser right now for somebody who has bad health and is in financial dire straits."
Last year the Father Newman Council also received the 200-plus club from the supreme council for surpassing its quota for new members by 200 per cent.