Knights of Columbus
Council 7418 600 N. Adelaide Fenton, MI 48430
WHO ARE THE KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS, ANYWAY?
From Bill French, Grand Knight of Fenton K. of C. Council 7418.
A chaplain who knew us well said this about the Knights of Columbus:
"They are a bunch of guys who raise money and then give it away."
Add to those words the idea that each Knight receives a lot in return and you have a good take on the Knights of Columbus.
When I became a Knight five years ago, after avoiding invitations for many years, my good friend Outhai, who already was a 1st degree Knight, said he would become more active if I joined. So I did. A short time later Outhai and I both became 2nd and 3rd degree Knights, and then advanced to 4th degree. The rewards are many.
First, I have made many new friends. People whose faces I had recognized many times at Sunday Mass now are a more important and treasured part of my life. There are so many good people right here in our parish with whom Melanie and I now share concerns, prayers, meals and good times. Can anyone have too many friends?
Also, I am so proud and even overwhelmed when I look at all the good works the Knights do for our parish and our community. All of the money we raise each year we end up giving to support the parish, or St. John School, or others in need, including several charities. Knights also find themselves giving of their time and talents, such as building a handicap ramp, cutting down a hazardous tree, doing a home repair for someone in need, even building a fence for our pastor's dogs.
When I invite another man to join the Knights, I often hear the same excuse I used for years: "Nope. Too busy now. Maybe later when my kids are grown." My own journey in Knighthood, from curious outsider to now serving as the Grand Knight in the Fenton Council, tells me that the kids are a great reason to be a Knight immediately. It's a family thing and the kids take pride in dad's effort. And the spouses join other ladies in the K. of C. Auxiliary to plan and carry out their own good works. Also, the insurance program available to Knights offers family protections that are safe and generous.
The only requirement to become a Knight is that you must be a 17 ½ years old and a practicing Catholic. The Knights were founded by a priest who believed strongly in joining the duties of manhood to the principles of our faith. In short, being a Knight helps you to succeed at being a Catholic man.
The sword and feathers are the striking regalia of 4th Degree Knights, those men who have chosen to enter the highest level of Knighthood.
WHO DO THE KNIGHTS HELP ?
In 2016 there were dozens and dozens of recipients of charitable donations from the Knights at St. John as part of our annual planning, and numerous others whom we helped on an emergency basis. We give to the mentally impaired in several different charities, we assist blind children in Genesee County, we give to Catholic Charities, to the St. Louis Center in Chelsea, to the Wounded Warrior Project, and many others. Always prominent on our list are St. John Parish, our priests, seminarians, our school, the ministries that serve our parish, needy families and children.
WHY SHOULD I JOIN?
We believe that good men become better mostly by practicing God’s teachings. And that process is helped along by the company they keep. If that’s important to you, give us a try. Worldwide, there are 1.9 million of us. If you find a better group of Catholic men with whom to associate, please tell us who it is.
WHAT ACTIVITIES CAN I HELP WITH?
It’s your choice. Our permanent fundraisers include: monthly parish breakfasts, weekly bingo, Lenten fish fries, street-corner Tootsie Roll sales, cutting/splitting firewood, annual wild game dinner, spaghetti dinner for the Wounded Warriors, euchre tournaments, and a few others.
Or maybe you can help with the student free-throw contest, the school essay contest, our Right to Life activities, the annual pastoral appreciation dinner, maintaining the eternal flame memorial, supporting the parish picnic, the Halloween party for children, the summer outing for altar servers, the Blue Mass to support police and first responders, our Christmas gift program for needy families, the children’s Christmas party, the Easter egg hunt, or help with any of the random tasks that others ask of us. Or maybe you will become an officer, or join a committee, or come up with a new idea to help fill a need.
HOW MUCH TIME MUST I COMMIT ?
As much as you decide.
WHERE DOES MY FAMILY FIT IN ?
We describe ourselves as a family/fraternal organization. Notice that family comes first. There is a social gathering for husbands and wives each month where we say a rosary together and share a meal. We gather for Mass and Communion as families once each quarter. We host special holiday/seasonal events through the year.
WHAT ABOUT SPOUSES?
The Ladies Auxiliary of the Knights of Columbus works alongside of the Knights, but is entirely independent, raising its own money and deciding how to spend it. We share a spiritual connection, pray together, socialize often, and help each other out with projects when necessary.
WHAT ARE THE FOUR DEGREES OF KNIGHTHOOD ?
It’s quite simple. Each degree of advancement in the Knights represents one of the four permanent principles of our order. Our first and foremost principle is Charity, and new Knights are received into our order with prayer and instruction on this tradition. The second principle is Unity; the third, Fraternity; the fourth is Patriotism. Most Knights choose to move through higher degrees, but it is not required. To read more about this, go to our national web page at www/kofc.org
WHAT IS THE INSURANCE PLAN ?
K. of C. insurance programs are regarded nationwide as a pillar of financial strength. Knights are eligible to enroll in a variety of voluntary programs that offer security to families, including many insurance and annuity options.
WILL I HAVE ANY FUN?
We believe so. We think it is fun to find other men who are just like ourselves, who share the same hopes and concerns, who find satisfaction in making the world better in a few small ways, and who go about this with good cheer and kindness. And maybe you would like to know that we enjoy the other kind of fun things too, like football, baseball, golf, bowling, fishing, boating, hunting, playing cards, barbecue, dining out.
HOW DO I JOIN ?
To contact John Thomas please fill out form below.