Star Council Awarded to St. Elizabeth Council 12796 for 2011-2012!

Our council, St. Elizabeth #12796 of Rockville, MD, has been awarded and received the Star Council plaque for the Columbian year 2011-2012. As Past Grand Knight, I (Michael Townsend) feel that this is one of the highest honors a local council can receive as it recognizes four key areas of achievement:

1. Recruitment: Each council has a recruiting quota. While there is no penalty for not meeting quota, the reward is a growing council with new ideas from new men and their families. As members pass away, move or become inactive, new men must fill their shoes and take on the duties of our four pillars: Charity, Unity, Fraternity and Patriotism.

2. Insurance: Again, to be able to measure goals, each council also has a quota for obtaining new insurance/financial benefits recipients. Enrollment in any of our fraternal benefits is completely optional; each brother is only asked to meet with our fraternal benefits adviser once, but in that one meeting, at least with our council, you can obtain a much greater understanding of the history and purpose of our Order from our brother Rick Morin, in addition to a review of your financial foundation. For fathers and husbands, I highly advise meeting with Rick as I know I can trust that he will go above and beyond the call of duty to ensure my wife is taken care of when I pass.

3. Activities: While the State Council does not monitor our specific activities, it is in our best interest to have at least one activity in each of the 6 areas each quarter: Community, Church, Council, Family, Youth and Culture of Life. And to keep track of those activities, the Grand Knight and his committee chairs must submit a report for each section on time to the state representative.

4. Promotion of First Degree: A new requirement this past year for Star Council was to either host (conduct) and/or send a new member to at least 4 individual First Degrees. Our council held 3 First Degree ceremonies with our own degree team and send candidates to at least 2 more degrees. Our District Deputy Richard Earenfight (now Former DD) ensured we had the degrees scheduled and that the degree team was prepared each time.

Our council met, and actually exceeded, these requirements this past Columbian year. In fact, we were just 1 new member shy of obtaining the coveted Double Star Council Award, which very few councils in the nation achieve. I’m positive that this year, we will most certainly obtain Star Council again, and I expect our council to work towards achieving double our membership quota to garner this award!

Now, I (Past Grand Knight) was so anxious to obtain “my” award that I didn’t wait until I was more formally attired at our most recent business meeting. Regardless, in the photo below are (from left to right):

Our Worthy Grand Knight Joe Stewart, Past Grand Knight Mike Townsend, current District Warden Kevin Kittka and Former District Deputy Richard Earenfight.

I want to thank the council primarily because without our 90 or so men, and their families, I couldn’t have done a single one of the 4 requirements on my own. We have a great year planned, with an upcoming Italian Dinner, Christmas Tree Sales, Coat Drive and much more. Thank you St. Elizabeth Council 12796 for your outstanding work in recruiting, activities, degree coordination/participation and recognizing the need to ensure a positive financial legacy for your families!

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