“When you need ultrasound machines, you know who to turn to,” says Linda Plummer, Executive Director of Morning Star Pregnancy Services.
The Knights of Columbus have supported and defended life across the United States and the world for almost five decades. They know that every life is a precious gift from God, and so they engage with their communities to nurture a culture of life through efforts such as participation in the March for Life, sponsoring novenas for life, and materially supporting the Special Olympics, life-affirming pregnancy centers, and an ultrasound machine initiative. Ultrasounds enable at-risk women to see their unborn child and choose life. Earlier this year, The Knights of Columbus installed the 1,500th ultrasound machine in the United States.
Here in Harrisburg, the Knights of Columbus actively support and defend life across the Diocese in coordination with the Secretariat for Catholic Life and Evangelization. Over the past decade, the Knights have supported the installation of nine ultrasound machines in life-affirming pregnancy centers in Lancaster, Hanover, York, Carlisle, Enola, Bonneauville and Shamokin. Recently, the Knights of Columbus’ Harrisburg Diocesan Chapter announced their commitment to providing 4D ultrasound machines in Harrisburg and Middletown, in support of Morning Star Clinics.
Morning Star Clinics is one of Harrisburg’s premier life-affirming pregnancy centers, with a 50-year history of holistic support for women and the unborn. Morning Star provides more than 1,000 ultrasounds a year. In 2021, those ultrasounds led to 523 at-risk women choosing life. Unfortunately, Morning Star’s ultrasound machines are aging and parts are becoming obsolete. Morning Star Executive Director, Linda Plummer, asked the Knights to assist with fundraising for contemporary, replacement ultrasound machines for their Harrisburg and Middletown offices. The total project requires three ultrasound machines and three associated cleaning systems.
“Where there is a need, there’s a Knight,” and the Harrisburg Diocesan Chapter stepped up to meet Morning Star’s need. The chapter galvanized more than 17 councils from across the Diocese to engage their communities and parishes in support of Morning Star.
St Joseph in Mechanicsburg (Council 12788), St. Vincent De Paul in Hanover (Council 14865) and St. Catherine Labouré in Harrisburg (Council 12811) have already had fundraising events.
In addition, several councils have provided significant financial donations, including St. Margaret Mary in Harrisburg (Council 14395), St. Joseph in York (Council 6353), the Father Edward Garrity Council (Council 10474), the Monsignor George Lentocha Council (Council 3501), St. John the Baptist in New Freedom (Council 8891), Santa Maria Assembly (Assembly 4191), and the Central Pennsylvania Region Councils.
These positive initial efforts are spurring on future activities at St. Paul the Apostle in Annville (Council 9875), St. Margaret Mary in Harrisburg (Council 14395) and Holy Name of Jesus in Harrisburg (Council 14081).
The Knights welcome support and involvement from across the Diocese. If you would like to know more about the Ultrasound Modernization project or contribute to the efforts, please contact Brother Lou Kratz at firstname.lastname@example.org or Brother Pat Sweeney at email@example.com. Contributions may be made to Harrisburg Diocesan Chapter, C/O Dan Zankl, 135 W. 4th St., Dallastown PA, 17313. Please note “Ultrasound Project” on the check.
Learn more about the Knights of Columbus at www.kofc.org.
(Lou Kratz is the Chairman of the Ultrasound Modernization Project for the Harrisburg Diocesan Chapter of the Knights of Columbus. Photo courtesy of Morning Star Clinics.)
By Lou Kratz, Special to The Witness