A Letter from the Prior Provincial

Dear Friends,

I would like to tell you about a miraculous birth and a very special gift. I learned about both on the extraordinary weekend of Blessed Michael McGivney’s Beatification.

The gift was a Blessed Mother medal and chain. The giver was Michelle Schachle. The recipient was a Catholic doctor. The place the gift was given was the delivery room, the site of the miraculous birth.

Now for the background. The doctor who received the gift eight months earlier told Michelle Schachle that the child she was carrying would never be born. He had a fatal disease that would not allow him to come to term. The doctor advised an abortion in order to protect Michelle from further complications.

Both Michelle and her husband, Dan, refused abortion and began to pray to Fr. Michael McGivney, founder of the Knights of Columbus. Following a pilgrimage to Fatima, Michelle returned to her doctor. The sonogram showed that the fatal disease vanished. She would be able to deliver Mikey after all.

Mikey was born via C-section. In the delivery room, Michelle gave the miraculous medal to her doctor who first counseled abortion. As Michelle tells it, the doctor took off her necklace and put on the Miraculous Medal. She now keeps two ultrasound photos on her desk: the first shows the fatal disease; the second was taken just before Mikey was born.

Michael McGivney Schachle offers a relic of Blessed Michael McGivney to Cardinal Joseph Tobin at the beatification Mass in Hartford. Photo by Dan Kwon, courtesy of the Knights of Columbus

I had the privilege of meeting Mikey in the Cathedral of St. Joseph in Hartford just before Fr. Michael (who Mikey is named after) McGivney’s beatification. His miracle birth paved the way for Fr. McGivney to take the next step toward canonization.

At this season, we need to know that miracle births continue to occur, that special gifts transform lives, and that we are called to bring our faith, hope, and love to all who long for Him who is “Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” (Is 9:6)




Very Rev. Kenneth R. Letoile, O.P.
Prior Provincial

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