Knights Hit the Links for Charity

SHELTON—Knights of Columbus councils are known for serving the greater good of their parishes and local communities and mostly work as individual councils. Seven years ago, Councils 14360 at St. Matthew Norwalk and 11077 at Our Lady of the Assumption Fairfield discovered that if they joined together to work on a major project, they could do even more for both of their parishes and communities. This realization led to the two councils hosting a charity golf tournament which started in 2016.

The two councils once again came together to host the 6th Annual Sword & Shield Charity Golf Classic on June 13, 2022, at Brownson Country Club in the Huntington section of Shelton. The golfers enjoyed a phenomenal buffet breakfast before heading out to play and finished the day with and a delicious buffet dinner which included prime rib, along with awards and raffles, including Yankees/Red Sox tickets at Fenway Park, Mets tickets and gift certificates to local restaurants. Both councils worked hard for a year to raise funds for the organizations they support.

“It’s great to see two councils and their supporters come together for such great causes.  It was a great day and it will yield many more great days because of all we can accomplish as a result,” said Council 14360 Grand Knight Anthony Armentano.

Representatives from three of the organizations which the tournament supports were present and spoke about their respective organizations at the event. CEO Vince Santilli spoke about ABRI/Homes for the Brave, which provides safe housing, vocational training and job placement, mental health and addiction services, and life skills coaching to help individuals, especially Veterans, leave homelessness behind.

Members of Malta House’s board attended and golfed in the event. Carey Dougherty explained about the mission of Malta House which promotes the dignity of God-given life by providing a nurturing home environment, support services and independent living skills to pregnant and parenting mothers of all faiths and their children. Gerard Agoglia explained that Off the Streets, serves the homeless & at-risk-of-becoming-homeless in Connecticut. OTS provides much-needed security deposits & simple household basics (furnishings & necessities) for eligible candidates that gets them off the streets and into a permanent home.

“One of my favorite parts of the tournament is to see representatives from the organizations that both councils assist every year speak and inform the attendees on how they are making a difference by having a fun day. It puts everything we do into perspective, said Sword & Shield Charity Golf Classic co-chairman and St. Matthew Council member George Ribellino, Jr.

Father Peter Cipriani, pastor of Our Lady of the Assumption and Father Jeff Couture, pastor of St Matthew both took part in the event. The councils are blessed to have such great support from their Pastors and Chaplains. Father Peter has a foursome every year and Father Jeff joined the golf committee members by selling mulligans and raffle tickets.

“We appreciate the support from our parishes and pastors. Father Jeff gets out on the course with the golf cart and greets the foursomes,” said Ribellino.

The Tournament supported by local businesses that bought sponsorships including title sponsor, Spotted Horse Tavern-Shelton/Westport, AJ’s Landscaping Services, Financial Advisory Services, Ravago Americas and Darien Rowayton Bank.

Co-Chairman Greg Matera from Council 11077 was also thrilled with how things went, “I am proud of our committee, volunteers, councils and those who work for over seven months each year to put on this event. Even the threat of rain at this year’s tournament could not change the excitement everyone had in golfing and enjoying the day after a long year.”

Since the event was such a success again this year, the Knights Councils will be booking the 7th Annual Sword & Shield Classic at Brownson Country Club in Huntington, Conn. in June 2023.

Other organizations the councils help support include Al’s Angels, St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Disabled American Veterans and Family & Children’s Agency. The tournament has raised over $130,000 over the last six years to use for it charitable works.

The goal of the Knights of Columbus Council No. 14360 at St. Matthew Parish and Our Lady of the Assumption Parish is to perform acts of charity, providing those in need with a range of support from financial to tactical help in dealing with a wide variety of challenges.