These Men They Call Knights

St Ignatius KofC – Council 9729

As of 05 June 2017

These Men They Call Knights

The Knights of Columbus (KofC) is a Catholic men’s fraternal benefit society that was formed to render financial aid to members and their families. Mutual aid and assistance are offered to sick, disabled and needy members and their families. Social and intellectual fellowship is promoted among members and their families through educational, charitable, religious, social welfare, war relief and public relief works.

The history of the Order shows how the foresight of Father Michael J. McGivney, whose cause for sainthood is being investigated by the Vatican, brought about what has become the world’s foremost Catholic fraternal benefit society. The Order has helped families obtain economic security and stability through its life insurance, annuity and long-term care programs, and has contributed time and energy worldwide to service in communities.

The Knights of Columbus has grown from several members in one council to more than 15,000 councils and 1.8 million members throughout the United States, Canada, the Philippines, Mexico, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Panama, the Bahamas, the Virgin Islands, Guatemala, Guam and Saipan.

Ceremonials of the Order

There are four “Degrees” of Knighthood within the KofC. The initiation ceremonies into each of these Degrees (the ceremonies themselves are also called “Degrees”) are the only facets of the Order which are not made known to non-members. Each of the Degrees is designed to exemplify one of the four Principals of the Order: Charity, Unity, Fraternity and Patriotism. The Degrees must be taken in order.

Every applicant must take the First, or Membership, Degree before he can be considered a Member of the KofC. Once he has taken his First-Degree, he becomes a member in good standing in the Order. To reach full Knighthood, members must also take the Second and Third-Degrees, and all members are strongly encouraged to do so. Members must have taken the Third degree to be elected to Council offices or to enter into the Fourth-Degree.

Once a man has been a member of the KofC for a year and has taken his Third-Degree, he is eligible to join a Fourth-Degree Assembly. The Fourth-Degree has its own structure separate from that of the Council. Fourth-Degree Assemblies gain their membership from Third-Degree members of several Councils within a larger geographic area. The most visible members of the Order are often the Fourth-Degree Color Corps, with their colorful capes, chapeaux and sabers.

Emblem of the Order

The emblem of the Order dates from the second Supreme Council meeting on May 12, 1883, when James T. Mullen, who was than supreme knight, designed it.

The emblem indicates a shield mounted upon the Formée cross (having the arms narrow at the center and expanding toward the ends). The shield is that associated with a medieval knight. The Formée cross is the representation of a traditional artistic design of the cross of Christ through which all graces of redemption were procured for mankind. This then represents the Catholic spirit of the Order.

Mounted on the shield are three objects: a fasces (a bundle of rods bound together about an ax with the blade projecting) standing vertically and, crossed behind it, an anchor and a dagger or short sword. The fasces from Roman days, carried before magistrates as an emblem of authority, is symbolic of authority which must exist in any tightly-bonded and efficiently operating organization. The anchor is the mariner’s symbol for Columbus, patron of the Order, while the short sword or dagger was the weapon of the Knight when engaged upon an errand of mercy. Thus, the shield expresses Catholic Knighthood in organized merciful action, and with the letters, KofC, it proclaims this specific form of activity.


Father Michael J. McGivney


  • Son of Irish immigrants
  • 1852: Born 12 Aug 1852
  • 1878: Ordained
  • 1882: Founded KofC, St. Mary’s Church, New Haven Connecticut
  • 1884: Named pastor of St. Thomas Church in Thomaston, Conn
  • 1890: Died 14 Aug 1890 (38yrs)
  • 2008: Declared Venerable

Central Tenets of the Catholic Faith

KofC Goals

  • Provide assistance to widows and children
  • Provide fraternal order for men to draw closer to their faith and one another

Four Principals of the Order

1st Degree:  Charity

2nd Degree:  Unity

3rd Degree:  Fraternity   

4th Degree:  Patriotism


  • Sanctifying grace makes us holy and pleasing to God
  • Actual grace helps us to do good and avoid evil

Ten Commandments

  • I am the lord, your God, you shall not have strange gods before me
  • You shall not take the name of Lord in vain
  • Remember to keep holy the Sabbath day
  • Honor thy Father and Mother
  • You shall not Kill
  • You shall not commit adultery
  • You shall not steal
  • You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor
  • You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife
  • You shall not covet your neighbor’s goods

Precepts of the Church

  • Attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation
  • Fast and abstain from meat on appointed days
  • Confess one’s sins at least once a year
  • Receive Holy Eucharist during Easter time
  • Contribute to the support of the Church
  • Observe the laws of the Church concerning marriage
  • Join in the missionary spirit and apostolate of the Church


  • Baptism
  • Reconciliation (confession)
  • Holy Eucharist
  • Confirmation
  • Matrimony
  • Holy Orders
  • Anointing of the sick

Gifts of the Holy Spirit

  • Wisdom
  • Understanding
  • Counsel
  • Knowledge
  • Fortitude
  • Piety
  • Fear of the Lord

Seven Heavenly Virtues

  • Prudence 
  • Justice
  • Temperance
  • Courage 
  • Faith
  • Hope
  • Charity

Seven Capital Sins

The Joyful Mysteries

  • Annunciation
  • Visitation
  • Birth of Jesus
  • Presentation of Jesus in the Temple
  • Finding Jesus in the Temple

The Sorrowful Mysteries

  • Agony in the Garden
  • Scourging at the Pillar
  • Crowning with Thorns
  • Carrying the Cross
  • Crucifixion


The Glorious Mysteries

  • Resurrection
  • Ascension
  • Descent of the Holy Spirit on the Apostles
  • Assumption of Mary
  • Crowning of Mary as Queen of the Angels and Saints

The Luminous Mysteries

  • Baptism of Jesus in the Jordan
  • Manifestation of Jesus at the Wedding at Cana
  • Proclamation of the Kingdom of God
  • Transfiguration of Jesus
  • Institution of the Eucharist

The fruits of the Holy Spirit

  • Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, generosity, gentleness, faithfulness, modesty, self-control, chastity


  • Ministered by bishop, priest or deacon.
  • In emergency, anyone can baptize
  • Pour water on forehead – speak: I baptize you in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy
  • At baptism, we receive seven special gifts of the Holy Spirit:
    • Wisdom, understanding, right judgement or council, courage or fortitude, knowledge, reverence or piety, wonder and awe or fear of the lord

The Rosary

  • The rosary (from the Latin rosarium, or “rose garden”) is a form of mental and vocal prayer centered on the mysteries in the lives of Jesus and Mary


  • Pentecost is known as the “birthday of the Church.” On that day, the Holy Spirit descended on the Apostles, giving them the graces they needed to go forth and teach the Gospel to all nations. This is the one meaning of the word “Catholic.” The Church is found in every land, and therefore it is “universal” or worldwide.
  • Pentecost occurs 55 Days after Easter.

Who is a Practical Catholic?

  • One who follows the commandments of God and the precepts of the Church
  • Precepts
    • Attend mass on Sunday and holy days
    • Confess your sins at least once a year
    • Receive Eucharistic Sacrament during Easter
    • Observe Church’s days of fasting & abstinence
    • Provide for the needs of the church
  • Holy Days of Obligation
    • Solemnity of Mary, January 1
    • Ascension of Jesus, Easter Season
    • Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, August 15
    • All Saints Day, November 1
    • Immaculate Conception, December 8
    • Christmas, December 25