Cardinal Seán P. O'Malley and Mass. State Deputy Russell A. Steinbach present the 2016 Lantern Award to Msgr. John J.M. Foster, vicar general and moderator of the curia of the Archdiocese for the Military Services, accepting on behalf of Catholic U.S. Military chaplains, April 18. Pilot photo/courtesy Archdiocese for the Military Services
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FRAMINGHAM -- The Massachusetts State Council Knights of Columbus presented the organization's 2016 Lantern Award April 18 night to "all the military chaplains of the Archdiocese for the Military Services, USA (AMS)."
The Lantern Award, established in 1957 to honor those who reflect the religious and patriotic ideals of the Founding Fathers, is named for the lanterns placed in the tower of the Old North Church in Boston to warn Paul Revere of the invading British at the outset of the American Revolutionary War.
Cardinal Seán P. O'Malley along with K of C State Deputy Russell A. Steinbach, presented the award -- a wood-mounted, encased candle -- to Msgr. John J.M. Foster, J.C.D., Archdiocese for the Military Services vicar general and moderator of the curia, during the K of C's 116th annual Patriots Dinner at the Sheraton Framingham Hotel. More than 400 Knights and their families attended the dinner in the Grand Ballroom.
In receiving the Lantern Award, Msgr. Foster said, "Service as a priest in the military is often presented as a vocation within a vocation. The chaplains you honor tonight have said yes, not only to living their call to follow the Lord as priests, but also to exercising their priesthood by ministering to your family members and friends in the Armed Forces. Thank you for honoring these men of God who are privileged to provide pastoral care to the men and women serving to defend the United States of America."
Currently, 215 priests serve on active duty as chaplains with Military Archdiocese endorsement and faculties in all branches of the Armed Forces at locations near and far around the world.