The printed (and crayoned) word is alive and well as the Knights of Columbus’ annual Seminarian Letter Project enters its second decade.

The campaign, instituted in 2000 by the New Jersey State Council of the Knights of Columbus, facilitates a link between children in Catholic schools and parish religious education programs and young men studying in seminaries around the country. Simple thank-you notes written by the youngsters, such as the one above by a Confirmation student in Sacred Heart Church, Bay Head, acquaint them with the concept of priestly vocations and offer encouragement to those who will dedicate their lives to the Church as priests.

Among those participating is the Rev. Gebhard Braungart Knights of Columbus Council #8415, which serves the parishes of St. Pio of Pietrelcina, Lavallette, and St. Junipero Serra Parish, Seaside Park. Deputy Grand Knight Robert Batta explained the program gives the young letter writers “a snapshot of what it is to be a priest,” and retold the joy expressed by seminarians who responded to the program.