FishEaters Traditional Catholic Forums

Full Version: What are the Knights of Colombus
You're currently viewing a stripped down version of our content. View the full version with proper formatting.
I kinda got roped into joining, a friend of mine is a member.  What is this?
A fraternal Catholic society originally formed to support Catholic families in the event of tragedy, iirc.  They sell life insurance, and do a lot of good work for their parishes; fundraisers, donations, etc.

As an added benefit, I've never been to a K of C meeting where beer wasn't served. Grin
It is a Catholic men's fraternal organization where you get to help at parish functions and be present at special masses.  The group was first founded by Fr. McGivney  as a way to help Catholic widows and children so the insurance portion was and is a very big part of it. The insurance is optional but it is the highest rated insurance you can get so you may want to look into it.

The format of the group was built around, don't be scared, Freemasonry.  Fr. McGivney was very smart for doing this because many Catholic men were becoming Masons during KofC's inception. In building something similar but different he made it attractive to many who would have become Masons if not for the existence of a  Catholic fraternal group.  In any case the group has a degree structure, with ceremony and such but in from what I've experienced in my council it is not really that big a deal. It's an open secret really.  The only difference in my eyes between the degrees is that you must be 3rd degree to hold an office in the council. As a matter of fact I am making my 3rd degree tomorrow evening. 

It's nothing nefarious. I wish it had a more spiritual bent but the reality is that there is a spirituality to service (to others, the parish, etc.) that many of my fellow members kind of forget.  If you have any concerns drop me a line. 

When are you making your first degree?
It was of great benefit for my dad, I know that.
(03-23-2017, 12:14 PM)AugustineNYC Wrote: [ -> ]It is a Catholic men's fraternal organization where you get to help at parish functions and be present at special masses.  The group was first founded by Fr. McGivney  as a way to help Catholic widows and children so the insurance portion was and is a very big part of it. The insurance is optional but it is the highest rated insurance you can get so you may want to look into it.

The format of the group was built around, don't be scared, Freemasonry.  Fr. McGivney was very smart for doing this because many Catholic men were becoming Masons during KofC's inception. In building something similar but different he made it attractive to many who would have become Masons if not for the existence of a  Catholic fraternal group.  In any case the group has a degree structure, with ceremony and such but in from what I've experienced in my council it is not really that big a deal. It's an open secret really.  The only difference in my eyes between the degrees is that you must be 3rd degree to hold an office in the council. As a matter of fact I am making my 3rd degree tomorrow evening. 

It's nothing nefarious. I wish it had a more spiritual bent but the reality is that there is a spirituality to service (to others, the parish, etc.) that many of my fellow members kind of forget.  If you have any concerns drop me a line. 

When are you making your first degree?

Hmmm, I am not sure when I will be making my first degree, probably sometime within the next two weeks.

I have no problem with it being organized like freemasonry, per se, in fact the man who asked if I would be interested in joining was pretty adamant about that, and said none of the Knights were masons, so long as it is just an organizational similarity. 

I was interested in it, just wondering what it is, so if it isn't to my liking I suppose I can just stop, yes? 

(03-23-2017, 11:09 AM)Justin Alphonsus Wrote: [ -> ]I kinda got roped into joining, a friend of mine is a member.  What is this?

The Knights of Columbus is a Catholic fraternal men's organization.  They'll have meetings once or twice a month or so, where you'll discuss whatever projects the council is working on at the moment.  There are four degrees that you take, and each has their own degree ceremony with symbolism that many, including myself, find meaningful.  The Fourth Degree has its own group, and its own meetings that are structured very similarly.  The Knights of Columbus does charity work.  They seem to have a particular interest in work that is geared towards helping the mentally disabled.  I think that's great, but SOOOO many programs that already exist to help the disabled are specifically geared towards that group.  Maybe another group of disabled people could use the help?  They also chip in to help with various church projects, such as helping with painting, plumbing, and other maintenance work that is beyond what the regular maintenance person would do.  They often help incoming/outgoing priests move, and might help them with other construction projects.  Maybe they'll do the same for an elderly parishioner.  The Fourth Degree also does the honor guard that you see at ordinations and other major events.  Joining the Fourth Degree doesn't mean you have to be on the honor guard.  By far, it appears, their most important feature is their life insurance- boy do they push it!  Certain council awards even depend on how many members they can get to buy their life insurance.  They overemphasize that part big time.  I think the most important thing to be aware of, however, is that the annual dues don't just go away if you decide it isn't for you.  If you stop for awhile and don't make a request (fill out a form) to go inactive, your dues will add up while you're gone.  If you don't pay them, the council has to pay them.  They won't send you to collections or anything, but if you want to become involved again, they might start asking you to pay up (in addition to offering you life insurance).

The Knights of Columbus has done some great work.  From what I understand, they were instrumental in adding "under God" to the pledge of allegiance.  KofC councils run well can be very edifying experiences and who knows, maybe you'll want the life insurance.  It also happens that the votes that got same-sex marriage legalized in New York were from Knights of Columbus, and they were not expelled as they should have been.  It seems the Knights of Columbus is as good or as bad as the council makes it.  The organization wasn't for me, though I appreciated being a part of it for a time.  I got to know some good people, and I got to help do important work for the parish, even though I had no money, no skills, and no influence.
(03-23-2017, 03:16 PM)Justin Alphonsus Wrote: [ -> ]
(03-23-2017, 12:14 PM)AugustineNYC Wrote: [ -> ]It is a Catholic men's fraternal organization where you get to help at parish functions and be present at special masses.  The group was first founded by Fr. McGivney  as a way to help Catholic widows and children so the insurance portion was and is a very big part of it. The insurance is optional but it is the highest rated insurance you can get so you may want to look into it.

The format of the group was built around, don't be scared, Freemasonry.  Fr. McGivney was very smart for doing this because many Catholic men were becoming Masons during KofC's inception. In building something similar but different he made it attractive to many who would have become Masons if not for the existence of a  Catholic fraternal group.  In any case the group has a degree structure, with ceremony and such but in from what I've experienced in my council it is not really that big a deal. It's an open secret really.  The only difference in my eyes between the degrees is that you must be 3rd degree to hold an office in the council. As a matter of fact I am making my 3rd degree tomorrow evening. 

It's nothing nefarious. I wish it had a more spiritual bent but the reality is that there is a spirituality to service (to others, the parish, etc.) that many of my fellow members kind of forget.  If you have any concerns drop me a line. 

When are you making your first degree?

Hmmm, I am not sure when I will be making my first degree, probably sometime within the next two weeks.

I have no problem with it being organized like freemasonry, per se, in fact the man who asked if I would be interested in joining was pretty adamant about that, and said none of the Knights were masons, so long as it is just an organizational similarity. 

I was interested in it, just wondering what it is, so if it isn't to my liking I suppose I can just stop, yes?

You can stop whenever you like. There is nothing holding you.  Have fun and God bless!
I was the building super at my council for a while before it was sold and (sadly) demolished. I always loved the organization and my time working there really helped my professional life. We do great stuff for the community, our parish and the Church in general, as well as provide life insurance.