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Knights of Columbus visit Niagara University

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NIAGARA UNIVERSITY — Niagara University welcomed two representatives from the Knights of Columbus to campus in October. Peter Sonski, director of the Knights of Columbus Museum, and Brian Caulfield, vice postulator for the cause for canonization of Blessed Michael McGivney, traveled from the Knight’s New Haven, Connecticut, international headquarters to Monteagle Ridge to learn more about how the Vincentians may have inspired Father McGivney, founder of the Knights of Columbus. Father McGivney attended Our Lady of Angels Seminary from 1871-1872.

Father James Maher, Niagara University president, accepts a bronze image of Blessed Michael McGivney, founder of the Knights of Columbus, from Peter Sonski, director of the Knights of Columbus Museum, and Brian Caulfield, vice postulator for the cause for Father McGivney’s canonization. (Photo courtesy of Niagara University)

During their visit, Father Joseph Hubbert, CM, retired professor of church history, discussed the formation Father McGivney would have received at Our Lady of Angels (the forerunner of Niagara University) and how that experience might have impacted his priestly life and his efforts to organize the Irish and immigrant community in support of families. He noted that Servant of God Nelson Baker of the Diocese of Buffalo and Father McGivney attended the seminary at the same time. Father Hubbert also took the men on a tour of the campus and other local sights that Father McGivney would have known, including the Niagara gorge and Niagara Falls.

A highlight of the visit was lunch in Clet Hall, the former seminary building. Niagara University’s president, Father James J. Maher, CM, hosted the lunch and accepted a bronze image of Father McGivney to honor his beatification and a check in appreciation for the formation of Niagara students through Campus Ministry. Father Greg Semeniuk, CM, vice president for mission integration and Father Hubbert also attended the lunch.

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