The Tar Heel Knight

December 2018

State Officers

Regional Membership and
Program Consultants


State Officers

State Deputy: John Nussbaum
Chaplain: Father Lesak
State Secretary: Dan Lange
State Treasurer: JC Reiher
State Advocate: Chris Losack
State Warden: Sergio Miranda
Immediate Past State Deputy: Colin Jorsch

Regional Membership and
Program Consultants

#1: JP Horvat
#2: Tom Smith
#3: Walter Kulla, Jr.
#4: Ron Cortopassi
#5: Richard Hamel

Community Director

James Laraia COMMUNITY – RECOGNITION OF RELIGIOUS DATES, CHARITY & DISASTER PREPAREDNESS Worthy Brothers All, On November 22nd, we celebrated Thanksgiving with our family, friends and in some cases…

Family Director

Bob Macaluso Looking to the Christmas Season Merry Christmas to all my Knights of Columbus Brothers and their Families.  Yes, the Christmas Season is upon us and soon we…

LAMB Director

Richard White This Month’s article is a little long, but I thought everyone would be interested in a letter received by Past State Deputy and LAMB Foundation President, John…

Coats For Kids

THE NEED IS NOW & THE JOY IS REAL Worthy Brothers All, We are now in early December and the weather is getting colder for our children in North Carolina. …

Surprise Christmas Suggestion

Devotions 203 (A Surprise Christmas Season Suggestion) There are so many events planned in every parish during this time of the year that quiet, meditative activities can be drowned out…


Greetings Brothers, Sir Knights, Worthy GK & Faithful Navigators, Vivat Jesus! I hope your Thanksgiving was great!  Now, as we enter into the Advent Season, Elaine and I wish you…

Community Director

James Laraia


Worthy Brothers All,

On November 22nd, we celebrated Thanksgiving with our family, friends and in some cases strangers.  As Catholics, Thanksgiving is a time where we come together to celebrate the true ‘Thanksgiving Meal’, the Body and Blood of Christ.   I hope each one of you were able to come together with your family, friends or community and give thanks to God for all His goodness.

On December 2nd, we celebrated the 1st Sunday of Advent.  The word Advent comes from the Latin word meaning “coming.”  Jesus is coming, and Advent is intended to be a season of preparation for His arrival.   The Christmas Season begins on the evening of December 24th.  On December 25th, we will celebrate Christ’s birth.  I wish each of you a Prayerful Advent Season and a Merry Christmas.

The end of November and the month of December is a time for thanks, preparation and celebration.  During this time period we become more aware and sensitive to the needs of our fellow Brothers & Sisters in Christ.  We focus on giving to those in need thru prayer, personal visits, clothing, food, money, etc.  As you prepare your monetary donations please consider the continued needs of individuals and families from Hurricane Florence & Michael.

During the aftermath of the hurricanes we heard many stories of need & help that was provided, we witnessed the love of God and experienced the brotherhood of our Order.  We now have many councils that understand the importance of a Disaster Preparedness Plan.  I respectfully ask each of you as a New Year’s resolution to implement or expand a Disaster Preparedness Plan at your council.

The first step is to ask several of your members who have been volunteering their services during the hurricane recovery period to formally join your Disaster Preparedness Team.   Then follow the process which is described in your Faith In Action binder.  Order and distribute the KofC disaster relief flyers in your parish and community (available at

The State Council has excellent resources to help guide you through this process.  Please reach out for guidance and questions to your Disaster Preparedness Chairman – Gene Ziemba ( or me (  There are many resources we can direct you to.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!


James T Laraia
NC State Community Director

Family Director

Bob Macaluso

Looking to the Christmas Season

Merry Christmas to all my Knights of Columbus Brothers and their Families.  Yes, the Christmas Season is upon us and soon we will be celebrating the birth of our savor Jesus Christ.  But before we celebrate his birth, we need to remember several important dates leading up to Christmas.

First, Advent starts on Sunday, December 2nd.  Advent is a time to prepare for the coming of Christ. The word Advent comes from the Latin word meaning “coming”.  Many Christian families celebrate Advent with the traditional Advent Wreath with the four candles, 3 purple and 1 pink.  The four candles represent the four weeks of Advent. The purple candles symbolize prayer and preparation while the pink candle symbolizes joy.

Two other dates that we should reflect on, prior to Christmas, is Saturday, December 8th the Feast of the Immaculate Conception of The Blessed Virgin Mary and Wednesday, December 12th, the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe.

Finally, the Christmas Season would not be complete until we celebrate the Consecration of the Holy Family on Sunday, December 30th, The Solemnity of Mary, the Mother of God on New Years Day and The Epiphany of the Lord on Sunday, January 6th.

In closing, from my family to yours, Merry Christmas and let us Keep Christ in Christmas because Christ is Christmas.

Vivat Jesus,

Bob Macaluso, PGK
NC State Family Director

LAMB Director

Richard White

This Month’s article is a little long, but I thought everyone would be interested in a letter received by Past State Deputy and LAMB Foundation President, John Gouldie, from Dr. Ave Lachiewicz.  of the Duke Medical /Fragile X program, one of the groups LAMB has supported for a number of years.

Richard White
LAMB Director

Dear John,

Thank you and all the Knights for helping our fragile X project since the late 1980s when Bill Scott and George Wahl were still very active with Operation LAMB.  We have received about $150,000 from Operation LAMB over the years.  As you know, fragile X syndrome is the leading hereditary cause of intellectual disability and autism.  In its milder form, fragile X syndrome causes learning disabilities.  It is a complicated genetic disease, and there are carriers with a permutation and people with the full mutation.  Female carriers have primary ovarian insufficiency with fertility problems and older people, who are carriers, can get a condition called fragile X tremor ataxia syndrome often misdiagnosed as Parkinson’s.  Many of the carriers suffer from anxiety and depression.

Although more and more people are being diagnosed, there is still quite a bit of ignorance about this condition.  To help with this, a couple of local organizations have been formed.  One is the NC Fragile X Foundation and one is a NC parent network that is affiliated with the National Fragile X Foundation.  We are all closely affiliated.  We do some projects outside of Duke like picnics, bowling tournaments and an annual or nearly annual workshop.  The goal of all of this is to make sure that our families are educated about this condition and get needed support.

At the beginning, our biggest need was to get families evaluated with blood tests.  Now most children in NC have health insurance so it is usually the adults in the family, who need help with testing.  I just had a cousin of one of my patients call about testing and this is what we hope for.  Sometimes these relatives are out of town so it can be a task to get them tested.   We tested his mother last year. I just had a call last week from St. Thomas More in Chapel Hill about three adult sisters with fragile X.  Four years ago, I asked their elderly mother to bring them in to Duke for testing.  One sister already had a diagnosis of fragile X but the other two sisters had never been tested.  This led to the mother and me speaking to mental health about getting the two most impaired daughters on the waiting list for the NC Innovations Waiver program so that they would be taken care of once the mother passed away and the family resources had dwindled.  The mother followed through on everything that I asked her to do and got her daughters on the waiting list for the Waiver program which is for people with intellectual disabilities. Sure enough, the mother passed away last summer and St. Thomas More is helping the sisters access the services that they need.   In the case of this family, there is no extended family so it matters that they have a proper diagnosis and their services can be maximized by being enrolled in the Waiver program.

We also received money from the Knights for books and flash cards for children and for workshops.  We hope to have a workshop next summer to cover basic issues regarding fragile X.  Our last workshop was on self-advocacy.  Flash cards and books are very popular with our patients, many of whom are from poor families.

This year we also received funding from the Knights to help pay for rent for the NC Fragile X Foundation office space.  This was the first year that we had enough donation money to cover the rent.  Our family was paying for part of the rent because we feel so strongly that these services are necessary in NC.

I believe that the future is decent for fragile X in NC although there is a long way to go.  RTI in the Triangle does some consistent research projects and UNC also may be opening up more services.  I am hoping that the families will continue to get the word out about fragile X in a grassroots fashion.

Thank you again for your continuous support.

With best wishes, Ave Lachiewicz, MD

Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrician
Associate Clinical Professor of Pediatrics

Coats For Kids


Worthy Brothers All,

We are now in early December and the weather is getting colder for our children in North Carolina.  Mid-December is an excellent time to implement and complete a Coats for Kids Program.

Coats for Kids

  • Who we help: Children, especially those going back to school, whose families cannot afford a warm coat.
  • What is it: The Coats for Kids program ensures that no child in North America goes without a suitable coat.
  • Where: Parishes, schools or other community gathering places.
  • When: Any time from September thru March.
  • Steps to Getting Started

Review the Coats for Kids Program in your Faith In Action binder

Set a distribution date, location, and time. Buy cases of coats through or from a local retailer.

Promote the Coats for Kids drive in the community and to local media or have a simple Coats for Kids drive at you church or local school.

If this is the first time your council is implementing the Coats for Kids Program you can keep it simple and then expand over the years.  This program is straight forward and is easy to implement. The program can take place anytime from now until March.  Keep your program simple and fun.  Perhaps take advantage of your church’s Angel Tree to find out who has a need.  You can then provide the coats to the church for them to distribute.

The important task is to identify who needs the coats.  If you do not have an Angel Tree at your church go ask your Faith Formation Director, your Pastor or a local grade school principle who needs a coat.  Once you identify the amounts and sizes select a convenient time and location to distribute.  You can distribute in a classroom after mass, provide to the church to distribute or distribute the coats on a Saturday at a local school.  Provide any number of coats your council can afford – 5 coats to 500 coats.  You can order coats using Knight Gear ( or purchase coats at a local retail store.

Seeing the joy of a child in need being given a brand-new coat invigorates council members and can motivate potential members to join the council.  Please consider conducting the Coats for Kids program in your council.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!


James T Laraia
NC State Community Director & Coats for Kids Chairman

Round Table Development 2018/2019

Dick Angell
Roundtable Chairman

Grand Knights,

Please be reminded to update your Report of Round Table Coordinator, Form 2629, by the Mid -Year Meetings in January.

Please develop new Round Tables for Parishes, Missions and other religious groups in your area that do not have a KofC Council. Our goal is to have a Knights of Columbus presence in all Catholic communities.

God Bless you for all you do,

Richard Angell
Round Table Chairman

Surprise Christmas Suggestion

Devotions 203 (A Surprise Christmas Season Suggestion)

There are so many events planned in every parish during this time of the year that quiet, meditative activities can be drowned out or pushed aside. And if we wanted to have a group event, we’d quickly discover the parish calendar has long been filled to the brim. Even so, all those scheduled activities are the same ones we’ve seen year after year. So how do we maintain the momentum of our devotional life through the Christmas season in a way that is both meaningful and unique?

One of the more striking Advent homilies I’ve heard was given by Father Ray Berg of Brevard’s Sacred Heart Parish many years ago to a small divorce support group. (Fr. Ray was perhaps the most joy-filled person I ever met in spite of having lost his wife before he became a Catholic and having his only son languish in a coma for years after a motorcycle accident.) His topic? The first chapter of the Gospel according to St. Matthew.

Oh, yeah! That’s where Jesus’ lineage is traced – all the ‘begats’, generations and generations of them –with names we can’t pronounce! BORING! And while Jewish society dictates a person’s ‘Jewishness’ is passed on only by one’s mother, all those names listed were the fathers. All, that is, EXCEPT for THREE women who are specifically mentioned (Look for the phrase ‘begat Obed OF Ruth’). Those three women were the focus of Fr. Ray’s discussion.

Alas, the full memory of Fr. Berg’s remarks has been lost over the years. What I do remember is that these women were not persons you’d expect to be recognized in one’s family tree. So, I leave it you and your devotional groups (with some guidance by your pastor) to find out who these women were. What was the historical context in which they lived? What did they do in their lives – good and maybe not-so-good? What about them makes it puzzling that they were mentioned? And then why do you suppose they were singled out to be included in Jesus’ lineage?

I hope you enjoy this bit of ‘detective work’. May it give you all a fresh new insight into the glory of Christmas and Jesus’ birth!

Fred Burton

Knights in Action

Council 12610 Holds an Open Meeting

Council 12610 of the Knights of Columbus at St. Francis of Assisi Mocksville, held an Open meeting on November 12th, in our Parish hall, it was a breaking of the bread dinner which consisted of a tour of Italy with 3 pastas and 3 sauces from each area of Italy and a meeting in which we invited Non Profits from Davie county to attend and discuss their Non Profit goals, we had A Storehouse for Jesus, Davie Pregnancy Center, JustHope, The Dragonfly House, Special Olympics, Davie County Guardian, The Advocacy Center, each was given time to speak abut there goals, and needs. We also were able to award our Family of the Year Ron and Peggy Kolbash for all they do for our parish (community Garden, Parish Council) and the community., and our Knight of the year Sir Knight and Veteran Gene Dickey with all his support of Special Olympics Davie County. The Dinner and meeting drew nearly a 100 people from the community and parish to break bread and share the fellowship of the Knights of Columbus on a cold and rainy night.

Assembly #3365 of Durham Honors Vets

Sir Knights Chris Cushing, David Kuboushek & Don Williams standing in front of the Veteran Display boards in the Saint Matthew Catholic Church. All three Sir Knights are members of Msgr. William F. O’Brien Assembly 3365 . SK David Kuboushek collected all the veteran pictures and displayed them on poster boards for all to view.

Sir Knight Chris Cushing and SK Don Williams reading from the pulpit the meaning of Veterans Day.

Sir Knight Willie Towell stands at attention as Andy Sciacca reads to the parishioners the meaning of Veterans Day.

Over Veteran’s Day weekend at St. Matthew Catholic Church (November 10th and November 11, 2018), SK’s of Assembly 3365 honored veterans and families that served to defend America.  In the gathering lobby of the church four large display boards were placed with approximately sixty veterans’ pictures and their military information such as their branch of service, rank, period of service and where they were stationed. SK Dave Kuboushek has been collecting these pictures for 5 years and the display continues to expand.   The display is a show stopper, with parishioners stopping on their way into and out of Mass to locate themselves, family members or often to discover that a parishioner they’ve known for years previously served in the military.   Each veteran displayed contains a picture of them in uniform plus a summary of their military career.  It really pops! The display represents 100’s of hours of effort and parishioners now expect to see it each Veteran’s Day weekend. Msgr. William F. O’Brien Assembly 3365 SK’s wishes to thank Fr. Thanh, Pastor of Saint Mathew Catholic Church for allowing this well-deserved display of veterans in the church commons of Saint Matthew Catholic Church along with an opportunity to speak to the congregation at the conclusion of each Mass.

In addition to the display of pictures, a reading of what Veterans Day means was read by SK’s of Assembly 3365.  The SK’s wore both the Regalia and the new uniform.  This was explained to the parishioners so that when they see our 4th degree Knights, they will understand the new uniform will be phased in as time will allow Knights to purchase the new gear.  To honor the parishioners that are veterans they were asked to stand-up and be recognized.   Families of veterans were also asked to stand and be recognized because families of veterans support our country by keeping the home fires burning.

This year’s event was even more appropriate given it coincided with the 100th anniversary of the Armistice Day and the conclusion of the First World War on November 11, 1918.  Parishioners were provided a brief history lesson on how Armistice Day later became Veteran’s Day.   The reading ended with the speaker thanking them and concluded with these most important words:

God bless you and your families.

God bless our troops and God bless America.

The parishioners responded with applause and appreciation that our Assembly had chosen to honor veterans and thank them for their service.

Council 16839 Donates to the Ashe Sharing Center

Knights of Columbus St. Francis of Assisi Council 16839 donated $500.00 to the Ashe Sharing Center on Nov. 21st. Ashe sharing center last year distributed over 500,000 pounds of food to Ashe County needy residents. Attending the presentation l to r : FS- LaBonte, DGK-De La Cerda, Treasurer- Esser, Ashe Sharing Center Director Michael Sexton, and GK – Breton.

District Master

Worthy Sir Knights and Brothers,

As we close a very busy month of November, we enter into the month of December that will be just as busy if not busier for all. Thank you for all your support this past month especially as you remembered our Veterans in ceremonies across the State. And thank you again for all your Programs in support of our Church, Community and Veterans.

We hear many stories of KofC support for the hurricane victims, not only our KofC Brothers and their families, but our Church properties as well. Thank you to all for your time, efforts and donations in support of our Catholic Communities and families in need.

With the approach of Advent and the Christmas Season, please take a look at the November Knightline, issue number 10, page 6. There is a special challenge and message from our Supreme Chaplain entitled, “What would you do if Jesus came?

The next scheduled Fourth Degree Exemplification will be hosted by Fr. Francis Connolly Assembly No. 3253 at St. Pius X Catholic Church, Greensboro, NC on February 16, 2019. This is a very centralized location in the State, with plenty of room for a large class. Now is the time to start recruiting for this class. The Dress Code Form and a copy of a form 4 as well as an Exemplification Information List are posted on the State Website at

There are goals required for the NC District for both membership and new Assemblies for the 2018-2019 Fraternal Year. We need your help to attain these goals. Please continue to offer membership in the Fourth Degree to our Third Degree Brothers as all goals are doable and reachable! All you have to do is ask a Brother Knight.

We still need your help in hosting a Fourth Degree Exemplification. Please check your schedules and advise if your Assembly and Church are available for an Exemplification in May and August time frames. We are especially looking for a host in the Western part of the State. As soon as we hear that repairs have been made to the hurricane related damaged Parish facilities, we will schedule an Exemplification in the Eastern part of the State. We appreciate all your efforts to host and schedule an Exemplification and look forward to your support, especially for new Brother Sir Knights.

Coupons for Troops is still on hold. Please do not forward any coupons until we get a message that the coupons will be accepted.

VAVS: Brother SK Tom DuPree has a special request for winter coats for Veterans. Click here to see the flyer, the Fourth Degree website and also the Tar Heel Knight for further information.

TIME TO GET STARTED: Survey of Fraternal Activity, Form 1728 for the Twelve Month Period Ending December 31, 2018 is due by January 31, 2019. Each Assembly is required to submit this report to Supreme Council Dept. of Fraternal Services with copies to the Vice Supreme Master and District Master. NC District has a great reputation as 100% compliance in reporting this form and this year will be no different. Your reporting and support will help to maintain our standing with Supreme.

Ceremonial for Renewal of Obligations: To be exemplified at your first meeting in January. The ceremony shall be under the direction of the District Master, a Former Master, Faithful Navigator or Past Faithful Navigator, as designated by the District Master. If you are planning on sponsoring this Ceremony, please e-mail or call the District Master with your request ASAP.

Military Chaplains Scholarship Fund: Assemblies may continue to donate to the fund by sending their donation with checks made out to: “Knights of Columbus Charities: and on the memo line write “Military Chaplains”. There is a flyer attached that advises of the address to forward your donations.

Please take a moment to remember all our Brother Sir Knights and their families in need and keep them in your thoughts and prayers!

Jo and I wish for all of you and your families a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy, Safe and Prosperous New Year.

Dates to Remember for December 2018:

  • December 2 – First Sunday of Advent
  • December 7National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day
  • December 8 – Immaculate Conception of The Blessed Virgin Mary
  • December 10 – Human Rights Day
  • December 15 – Bill of Rights Day
  • December 21 – Winter Begins
  • December 25 – Christmas Day
  • December 30 – The Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph
  • December 31 – Official End of World War II

Remember – “Sir Knight” is not just a title, it is “An Honor”

God Bless you, God Bless Our Church and God Bless America!

SK Jack Murray, PSD
N.C. District Master

Albermarle Plantation in Hertford, NC conducted a ceremony to honor our Nation’s Veterans. FN Tom Pomte and PFN’s Buzz Savage and Fred Morrow of Assembly 2379, Elizabeth City, presented and raised the American Flag. The Ceremony was organized and conducted by PFN Walt Smith of Assembly 2379.

Fr. Joseph F. Bumann Assembly 2238, Hope Mills participated in Annual Veterans Day Wreath laying Ceremony at Hope Mills Veterans Memorial.

Veterans Day at Forest Lawn Cemetery, Hendersonville
Honor Guard from Blue Ridge Assembly No 2130, Hendersonville

St. Peter’s Catholic Church held a special 9:00 AM Mass and Brunch to honor Veterans. Assembly 1899 supplied the Honor Guard.


Tom DuPree

Greetings Brothers, Sir Knights, Worthy GK & Faithful Navigators,

Vivat Jesus!

I hope your Thanksgiving was great!  Now, as we enter into the Advent Season, Elaine and I wish you and your family a Blessed Christmas and Happy New Year.  If you are traveling, our prayers will be with you for a safe and pleasant trip.  During the up-coming Christmas Season, many of our Veterans will be alone and lonely, especially the Community Living Center (CLC).  Please consider taking some of your valuable time to share the Christmas Spirit by visiting one of our Medical Centers, USOs or nursing homes to bring a little sunshine into their lives.  Any of these facilities would gladly accept your visit, treats, etc…during this season.

Please contact at the VA Chief, Voluntary Services facility to make arrangements.  For the USO-NC, contact the Director. 

Friday, December 7th is National Pearl Harbor Day.  Many of our Veterans living in the CLC served during this era.  A simple recognition of their service would surely be appreciated.

As we purchase our Christmas gifts, please consider donating a gift card to the VA/USOs to be used for emergency situations and needs of our Veterans.  Example of cards…Walmart, Target, restaurants, grocery chains.  These cards allow the VA Staff the opportunity to take a Veteran for outside socialization.  The grocery cards are used for “special meals” and to retrain Veterans on cooking and proper nutrition in their current condition.

REPORTS:  Reporting of Activities in support of our Veterans

As you prepare your form 1728, I need your report of activities, your Brothers, SK, Councils and Assemblies who have participated in activities supporting our Veterans in the year 2018.  THIS IS IN ADDITION TO THE 1728 REQUIREMENT.  The form, NCVAVS Report, is available to you on the State Website under Forms.  The report is due by January 31, 2019.  This data is shared with NC State Deputy, District Master, Vice-Supreme Master and Supreme.  The report is sent to the attention of:  SK Thomas W. DuPree, NC District VAVS Representative and NC Veteran Affairs, Chairman.  His email is


Coats for Veterans:  Now that the weather has turned cold, there is a tremendous need for new coats for Veterans.  All VA Medical Centers have this program to support needed Veterans.  See flyer.  As an example of your participation, since the program began eight years ago, the Durham VA Medical Center has received over 6,000 New Winter coats.  Last year-400.  As you can see, the need is great.

Veteran Affairs Voluntary Services (VAVS Representatives)—I currently have needs as Deputy Reps for the Fayetteville, Salisbury & Durham Medical Centers.  Responsibilities:  Serve as a liaison between Knights and the Medical Center.  In addition, assist with coordination of the Knights and the VAVS Activities at the Medical Center.  Interested in being a Deputy Rep, please contact me at 919-302-5550 or


SK Thomas W. (Tom) DuPree Jr. PGK, PFN, VAVS Representative Durham VA North Carolina District VAVS Representative VA,
NC State Council Veterans Affairs and VAVS Chairman
St. Francis of Assisi Assembly # 3552, Past Faithful Navigator