A number of years ago, when our council was just starting, our knights looked for ways to help build our church community. Most of our families were fairly new to Chapel Hill. Some knights had been with our church since the beginning on Gimghoul Street and others were here for school, a new job, or to be with family.
We all remembered church events from our former parishes where were carnivals, barbecues, fish fries, spaghetti dinners, pancake breakfasts, ice cream socials, St. Patrick’s Day, Oktoberfests and more. These parish events build church. They get families and children together.
Our mission was to find our niche. The church already held pancake breakfasts (hosted by the Men’s Club). What were we to do?
That is how we started our first fish fry. It was a financial disaster (we spent more then we made). We did not make money, but we were successful in starting something that was bigger than us. We believed that we were not doing things to make money. We were working to build a strong fraternal men’s group and make a difference in the community. This was our ministry.
We learned that we could have fun, demonstrate teamwork and family values, and show our parish men that there was something for them to do. Something for them to be part of that not only strengthen their families, but built a stronger parish. We could make a difference and have fun at the same time.
Today, our Lenten Fish Fries attract large crowds and families. We event get community walk-ins from nearby protestant churches. After all, who doesn’t like fish on Fridays during Lent. Our neighbors and community get to see a full parking lot on 15-501. You can be sure that they see our brightly lit building, church, and parking lot full of cars and say, “Wow! What’s that?” Maybe we might attract a fellow Catholic who is looking for a church to go home to, especially at Easter.
Yes, our council fish fries help build church. You and your family are doing it one brick, one fish, one plate of barbecue, one smile, one hello, and one warm, loving handshake at a time. The Knights of Columbus, An Experience of a Lifetime.
If you are a Catholic gentlemen, 18 or older, we invite you to join us.