Farewell from Former Supreme Knight Carl Anderson
Knights of Columbus Supreme Headquarters
February 28th, 2021
Dear Brother Knights:
As I conclude my service to the Order as Supreme Knight today, I wanted to write to share a few final thoughts with you.
It has been the greatest privilege of my life to lead the Knights of Columbus for the past 20 years. Together, we have brought the Order’s activity to new heights of charity, in service to our communities and parishes. Together, we have made a difference in the lives of millions of Catholic men and provided financial security to their families. Together, we have brought Father McGivney’s dream to new lands and seen our Founder’s cause advance to his beatification. Together, we have faced challenges head on and prepared the Order for the future.
I will always be grateful for the many opportunities to visit with brother Knights around the world — from Mexico City to Manila, from Québec to Kraków, from the Laguna Pueblo to Léon, from Sandy Hook to Seoul, and countless places in between. Time and again, I have seen firsthand the incredible difference Knights make — when disaster strikes; when a worried young mother is in need of support; when a man is striving to grow in faith with his family; when the wounds of war need grace to heal; when a parish priest asks for help; when a child goes hungry or needs a wheelchair or a warm winter coat; when Christians in the Middle East are at risk of extinction. I am a witness to what has often been said: “Where there’s a need, there’s a Knight.”
To all the Supreme Officers, Supreme Directors, State Deputies, Agents and Supreme Council colleagues that I have worked with on a daily basis: I will always be grateful for your commitment and professionalism. I also owe a special debt to my brother Knights in the District of Columbia, my home jurisdiction, for their tremendous support and sterling example of unity and fraternity. And I am grateful to you, and to every one of the 2 million men I am proud to call a brother Knight.
I welcome with great enthusiasm my successor, Patrick Kelly, who tomorrow will take office as the Order’s 14th Supreme Knight. He has the skills, dedication and vision needed to lead the Knights of Columbus into the future. Patrick Kelly will be a Worthy Supreme Knight.
Two decades ago, as a new Supreme Knight, I predicted that “the best is yet to come.” As I look back on the past 20 years, and the achievements made possible by contributions of so many Knights, I know I was not mistaken. Today, with equal confidence, I believe we can still say that for the Knights of Columbus — the best is yet to come!
Carl A. Anderson