Catholic Diocese of Spokane, Washington

From the

Official News Magazine of the Diocese of Spokane

Eric Meisfjord, Editor
P.O. Box 1453, Spokane WA 99210
(509) 358-7340; FAX: (509) 358-7302

KCs’ ‘Charity Begins at Home’ seminar series morphs as a parish project

the Inland Register

(From the February 19, 2015 edition of the Inland Register)

From left: St. John Vianney Grand Knight Brad Smith, Master of Ceremonies Harold Kellams, St. John Vianney School principal Sonia Flores-Davis, and Red Cross volunteer Frank Cejka. (IR photo courtesy of the Knights of Columbus)

The Knights of Columbus Council #8201 at St. John Vianney Parish, Spokane Valley, has agreed to partner with the parish’s school to promote the council’s new “Charity Begins at Home: Protecting Your Family and Neighborhood” seminar program. The new alliance began on Tuesday evening, Jan.6, with “Home Disaster Preparedness.” Forty-two people, both parishioners and non-parishioners, attended the presentation, including St. John Vianney School principal Sonia Flores-Davis and several of the school’s teachers.

The event was the second of three seminars in the new series scheduled for fraternal year 2014-2015. Frank Cejka, Disaster Mental Health Lead with the Red Cross of Spokane, spoke on “Home Disaster Preparedness.” He gave details on what it means to be “Red Cross Ready.”

The new partnership between the Knights and the school centers on the idea that the family is the foundation of the parish in particular and the Church as a whole. It makes sense, therefore, for both parents and children to learn what it takes to keep the family safe, healthy and secure. The council and the school believe they can contribute to those positive outcomes, especially by working together. So, on Feb. 11, the school hosted its first Red Cross-sponsored “Pillowcase Project,” a home disaster preparedness program for students in grades 3-5.

The council and the school also plan to partner in a future seminar scheduled for Tuesday, May 5, at 6 p.m., titled “Home and Neighborhood Security.” Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich will be the speaker at that event. The council is committed to assisting the school in producing a follow-up program for the students at school. Significantly, the school already has been developing a summer program for students on personal safety.

The council and school are planning to launch a second year of the seminar series in the fall. The first seminar will once again focus on the general topic of dealing with family emergencies, featuring a firefighter and paramedic. The school already has classes tour one or more fire stations in Spokane Valley each fall.

This new partnership has been very exciting for both council members and school staff. As the diocese enters the first phase of the “Know, Love, Serve” five-year diocesan pastoral plan, both Knights and school personnel hope to make it an opportunity for training parents and children to become leaders in their homes, their school and the parish.

To quote a recent homily by Father Charles Skok, senior priest at St, John Vianney parish, “Charity may begin at home, but it mustn’t stop there.”

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