The History of Cuore d’Italia “Heart of Italy”
On November 3, 1996 the existence of Cuore d’Italia, Lodge # 2703, came into being at a formal installation which took place with over 200 members. The founders of record were Phil and Rosemarie Butti and Vincent Perratore, all residing in Jupiter, Florida. Many other Italian residents and business owners of the Jupiter area joined the group seeking the formulation to preserve the rich Italian-American culture and heritage.
We who are Americans of Italian ancestry share in a number of cultures through our heritage. We participate in Roman culture that gave us architecture, music, painting, and sculpture. Our Roman culture gave us Michelangelo Buonarroti, Leonardo DaVinci, Giuseppe Verdi, and Dante Alighieri. We are privileged to be sons, daughters, grandsons, and granddaughters of immigrants that passed through Ellis Island.
They gave us an unshakable respect for family, for obligation to the elderly, to provide for children one brings into the world. And the taking care of our Wounded Veterans who in turn have given so much to protect our well being. They taught us the dignity of hard work, a shameless bold patriotism, and a deep religious conviction. They also instructed us how to bear the pain for a generation, so that the next generation could live a better life. They passed on the capacity to give, and they taught us to love.
Because we live in this great land of ours as Americans, and being fully aware that we enjoy the liberties, opportunities, and uncountable benefits, which are ours through citizenship, we count our blessings. The Order Sons of Italy in America seeks to bring together men and women of Italian descent who number more than twenty-two million in the United States. The Order was first organized in New York on June 22, 1905. It is a non profit organization that truly represents Italian Americans from all walks of life. The State of Florida currently has approximately 35 local Lodges throughout the State.
As members of a Fraternal Order, it is our desire to bond together in one common purpose. The realization that through intelligent, conscientious exercise of civic duties, and charitable deeds, we strengthen our Order, our country, and help to broaden our American way of life.
Today, the Order seeks to address itself to the changing needs of its members, and to negate the rising tide of defamation to our heritage and culture. Some of the combat techniques include scholarship grants and promoting a more positive manner in public relations regarding Italian Americans. Cuore d’Italia takes these directives and breaks them down into simple, more direct, actions in select areas of our choosing. Each year in June our lodge gives out scholarships to two local deserving students. We also raise money which is given to various charities; Cooley’s Anemia, Alzheimer’s Foundation, American Cancer Society, Autism Foundation and The Wounded Veterans Relief Assistance (which is a one on one donation given at Christmas).
The Order, true to its Charter has consistently met the needs of its members, and will continue to do so. Our heritage gives us our common bond, but our accomplished deeds ensure the unity of all Italian Americans.