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Anderson says Knights' efforts follow pope's call to help world's poor


Knights sing during the Aug. 5 opening Mass of the 132nd Supreme Convention of the Knights of Columbus in Orlando, Fla. (CNS photo/Tom Tracy)

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ORLANDO, Fla. (CNS) -- As an international fraternal organization, the Knights of Columbus is well-positioned to follow Pope Francis' witness of "love for the sick, the suffering and the poor," said Supreme Knight Carl A. Anderson.

That "extraordinary witness" and the pope's admonition to all to cast aside indifference have "captured the imagination of the world," he said Aug. 5 at the opening business session of the Knights' 132nd Supreme Convention in Orlando.

"As Knights of Columbus, we are well-positioned to respond," said Anderson.

He made the remarks in a lengthy annual report detailing the organization's accomplishments and initiatives in 2013.

The Aug. 5-7 convention celebrated a year in which the organization reported an all-time record for charitable giving: more than $170 million and more than 70.5 million hours of service to charitable causes in the United States and elsewhere the Knights are active.

Response to unexpected tragedies played a large role in members' activities last year, according to Anderson, while the Knights continued their support within their communities for the Knights of Columbus Coats for Kids and Food for Families initiatives; programs for those with intellectual disabilities; blood drives; and partnerships with Habitat for Humanity, Special Olympics and the American Wheelchair Mission.

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