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Another Reason Why I Will Never Again Be a Knight of Columbus August 23, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, Basics, different religion, disaster, error, foolishness, General Catholic, It's all about the $$$, persecution, sadness, scandals, secularism, Society, the struggle for the Church.

I know I have a goodly number of readers who belong to the Knights of Columbus, as I used to.  I left the organization years ago over its persecution of members who demanded the organization live up to its founding ideal, and ban membership from public heretics and others not living a “practical Catholic life.”  I can understand why some men want to belong to the KoC, warts and all.

But the organization under Supreme Knight Carl Andersen continues to make highly perplexing decisions.  One is the recently announced change to the 4th degree uniforms.  Whatever one thinks of the old ones, the new ones are decidedly lacking in presence.  It’s a suit coat with a patch and a goofy looking beret, instead of the classic tux and sash look.  Apparently this decision has been met with a great deal of controversy.

More telling, however, was the decision by the KoC to spend millions of dollars bolstering a decidedly left-wing pseudo-Catholic organization in the publication Crux – more or less a vanity vehicle for John Allen and an attempt by deranged Boston Globe management to cash in on what they thought would be the raging popularity of Francis, Bishop of Rome.  Crux has lately been on the attack against those horrid converts to Catholicism, who should really just be constantly on their knees thanking God for permitting us in the Church and just keep our mouths shut and let the left-liberal cradle Catholics do all the talking, thinking, and running of the Church*.

In a particularly ugly bit of spleen-venting, Francis-supporter and super-liberal Austin Invereigh inveighed against a number of Catholic converts by name, including Edwin Pentin and Ross Douthat, accusing them of being possessed of a neurosis.  This was followed up by a half-hearted apology and then a doubling down, repeating the attack in a third piece.  The KoC has, to date, not issued an apology or demanded a retraction, even though they are now part-owners of Crux.  Via Rorate:

The Knights of Columbus made a clear choice when the organization decided to sponsor the faltering “Crux” — founded by the Boston Globe for liberal journalist John Allen Jr (when the Globe thought it could cash in on Francis’ supposed “popularity”) and then, when it came into trouble, propped up by the Knights.
The Knights’ choice was to uphold the liberal and Modernist version of Catholicism in reporting news.
For a few weeks now, Knights-Crux has been on a crusade to crush the credibility of converts to Catholicism. This because the Modernist establishment currently in charge of much of the central government of the Church hates American Catholicism, hates conservative Catholics in the United States, hates the Traditional-friendly general trends of the strongest portions of English-speaking Catholicism, and hates, therefore, informed converts who are so influential in those circles.
The first shot was an article by Austin Ivereigh on “Pope Francis and the convert problem“. Yes, it’s a “problem”, apparently, and as such it will demand a “solution”. The controversy generated by the article was so great that Knights-Crux editor Allen Jr. had to intervene. This “intervention” was just for show, because a few days later, Knights-Crux publishes a new attack on converts, by convert David Mills with the shocking title “Newcomers to the Church should speak less, listen more“.
Why do the Knights of Columbus wish to silence, shame, and persecute Converts? Why do they support this campaign of discrimination of converts in the Church? The leadership of the Knights of Columbus must speak up clearly, or the Crux crusade against converts will remain for all purposes the public and editorial policy of the Knights.

I’m sorry, but there is no benefit the Knights provide that outweighs their coziness with those destroying the (human element of) Church from within.  There is no benefit to me or my family from being associated with this organization, which, whatever its founding purpose and original intent, has gone far astray, and is more concerned with receiving the continued approbation of the great powers in the Church (and, it seems, the culture) than really aiding the workaday lives of individual poor Catholics, which was Fr. Michael McGiveney’s intent.  In truth, the restoration of the Faith is what those poor Catholics – what all Catholics – need most, not politicking and engaging in dubious investments.

I know not all readers agree, and that’s their prerogative.  Please don’t take this post as an attack on you.  Perhaps traditional Catholic men should consider starting their own alternative to the Knights?  That might be a hot one for the parish council meeting, if your parish has such things.

*- They are not entirely wrong on this. I should be ever more thankful to God for making me a part of His Church.  But the reasons why the Crux crowd are on this crusade against conflicts has everything to do with sexular leftist politics/ideology (what one might call the leftists true religion), instead of any concern for converts’ souls.


1. Dennis Hogan - August 23, 2017

I will never join the KofC because they seemed to me as a kid to be the Catholic Men’s Drinking Team. I know they were not the cause of my father’s alcoholism but they sure did not seem to care about those members who did have drinking problems. Having a bar at the old NW Highway location was a more important service to its members than helping them with their struggles, as I look back.

Tantumblogo - August 23, 2017

Quite a revealing comment, DH. Thank you for making it. I, too, had issues with the drinking at KoC events, especially as I got clean. Over time I just ignored it, but you are correct that in some councils in particular, it is an issue.

2. Tim - August 23, 2017

The Knights of Columbus are “Catholic” freemasons.

Tantumblogo - August 23, 2017

Maybe a little on the strong side. Whatever they are or intend to be, the leadership has exhibited frequent moral cowardice and a lackadaisical attitude towards the good of souls going back many years. They have contributed on many occasions to moral derangement in the Church and country. As such, they are not worth my involvement.

Tim - August 23, 2017

Yes, perhaps a bit strong.

Tantumblogo - August 23, 2017

Hey, good thing is, I don’t have any doubt where you stand.

Tim - August 24, 2017

I rarely give people that difficulty!

3. Frank - August 23, 2017

I originally joined because I bought into the notion that the Knights were primarily about corporal works of mercy. My illusions first began to waver when I started getting calls from the Council’s insurance salesman. I put that aside initially since an original purpose of the organization was helping the families of Catholic men killed on their dangerous jobs, in a time before workers’ compensation or labor unions, to survive. Then a few years ago came the public kerfuffle over a council in Indiana renting out its hall for a same-sex “marriage”, and then pulling down its Facebook page when Knights and other Catholics from all over the country began commenting on their blatant violation of Church teaching. I even went to a friend who is a state officer, and after looking into the matter he told me the Supreme Council wasn’t going to do anything about it.

I stopped going to meetings at that point, and still volunteered for a few worthy local charity projects. But when they bailed out the ultra-Modernist John Allen I reached my limit. Rorate’s commentary is spot on. No faithful Catholic man should support this corrupt organization any longer.

4. Jeff C. - August 23, 2017

To be honest, I’m involved in a Knights chapter in a small town in rural Nebraska. What we do is raise a little money and then give it back to the community. We also take care of a lot of Church projects that need to be done. These guys have no idea what is going on at the higher levels. I do notice though that the priority of the higher ups is more members, more members, more members.

Tim - August 23, 2017

Follow the $$$$$$$$$$$!

5. MrT - August 23, 2017

That’s it, kick ’em while their down … And we’re all going to be consistent about this. Are all of you leaving the Catholic Church because our hierarchy acts contrary to the Faith? The Church is to be rejected because its principles are being ignored by the powers that be and the rank and file consists of well-meaning dummies? Etc. Father Venerable Michael McGivney, pray for us.

Tim - August 23, 2017

Hey MrT,

I’ve been in the organization and I know the shenanigans from the inside. My initiation meeting was like a KKK ritual with darkened rooms and the leaders in white hoods and robes. They’re very secretive and Masonic. They were a bunch of modernist Novusordites.
At one meeting years ago one of the brothers asked me where I went to Mass and I told him about the FSSP parish in town and he responded that he went to tbe “real” Mass(isn’t that supposed to be our line?).
There are certainly some fine individual members but the organization is a modernist tool. It’s an old boys drinking club by and large.

Spare me the stuff about “good works”……big deal, masons do all that sort of thing as well.
In theory the organization is a good idea, but in reality it is a rotting pile of liberalism and modernism.

Follow the $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$.

Leaving them is not the same as leaving the Catholic Church. The Church is a Divine institution despite having evil leaders at various times in history. Being in the Church is necessary for salvation. Being in the Knights is not. In fact it could possibly endanger someone’s salvation. Very poor analogy.

6. David - August 23, 2017

I didn’t grow up around the Knights as a kid (My dad is Protestant, and my Scout troop was chartered by a Protestant Church), but I think the Knights have taken more interest in faith based work over the past 30-40 Years. Since 2002, I have been an active Knight, and council’s whose main focus is beer and card games are dying because the JPII generation wants something with a “mission”.

The council’s that are growing have a “mission”. Our council participated this summer in a Fatima Procession, and I do take some time to uphold the sanctity of life. My council also runs an active Squires chapter, and supports veterans and seminarians.

I don’t know why the Knights acquired Crux, and I am not a 4th, but the new uniform is ugly. However, I do recall Supreme getting upset with a group of Knights in New Jersey who in 2008 were campaigning for a pro choice politician. I am one Knight would be very upset with Knights who casted votes for Clinton and Obama.

7. MFG - August 23, 2017

I’m a traditional Knight along with hundreds others across the US and Canada and certainly agree the KC’s affiliation with Crux is a problem which is quickly becoming an albatross (or anvil).

I still think there are enough faithful Knights (both Novus Ordo and TLMers) in the Order to lobby them to steer them away from these bizarre decisions. The problem is organizing it. I do think praying and asking for Ven. Fr. McGivney’s intercession would be a good start.

I also do echo the new focus on faith and family the Order is taking. We should remember the Knights suffer from the Church’s problems too and yet are probably still in better moral standing than the Curia. Will try to stay and promote tradition while we still can.

8. Canon212 Update: Catholics Are Men for All Seasons, Holy Francis – The Stumbling Block - August 23, 2017


9. Tim - August 23, 2017
10. Antonia - August 23, 2017

I wholeheartedly support the Knights. Even *if* they were merely a “beer and card games” group, men absolutely need that relaxed fellowship with other practicing Catholics. When you add on the Knights’ faithfulness (relative to the Church as a whole they are very faithful), pro life emphasis and work, charitable works of many other kinds (men need to put time into charitable work, for their own souls as well as to help those in need!), and serious level of help for persecuted Christians in the Middle East…and I believe the KofC is a very worthwhile organization.

They’re not perfect, they do have the “here comes everybody” problem in terms of individual members’ varying levels of commitment & holiness, and they should get rid of Crux, but they are a pillar of men’s Catholicism in our country where “all” Catholic men can come together.

Very faithful men would do well to join the Knights and evangelize the more wishy-washy members I think. Let’s not get too persnickety about our good Catholic organizations and peck them to death, but support them in bringing our men deeper into the Church and closer to Christ. Having said all this…I do hate the new uniforms, though, ha!

David - August 23, 2017


Well put, thank you.

11. Tim - August 23, 2017
12. James - August 23, 2017

The Knights financial support of “Crux” is a scandal of major proportion and need be called out widely in Catholic media. It bespeaks the fraudulence of the “freedom” presently riding high in our Church that this abhorrent situation is not called out for what it is.

13. Tim - August 23, 2017
Tantumblogo - August 23, 2017

Fascinating. Wow, that’s some damning analysis. Ouch.

14. Richard Malcolm - August 23, 2017

Speaking as a 4th degree but currently rather inactive Knight, I share the frustrations over what’s currently afoot with its mixed (at best) witness on the Church’s moral teachings. Bending over backwards to be fair to present leadership, I might offer a general point about the situation Carl Anderson is in.

Anderson is on balance (I think) a good egg – yes, something of a neo-conservative, but he has had some modest success in pulling the KofC in a slightly but noticeably more conservative direction in the face of internal opposition; he does good work with the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family, where he’s a large reason why the Institute has stayed solid so far through four years of a pontificate seemingly determined to undermine those teachings the Institute has tried so hard to be a good witness for.

A key difficulty, however, is that the KofC is now the best financed Catholic organization in the country, and as finances deteriorate along with attendance numbers in most of the country, bishops have been more and more willing to lean on the Knights to help out when they need help the most. This is why the Knights stepped in to bail out the deeply debt ridden Saint John Paul II National Shrine – Cdl. Maida and Archbp. Vigneron begged for the help, and they got it. I have the sense that something similar happened with Crux – some bishops saw value in the survival of what they perceived as the most journalistically serious Catholic news outlet in the U.S., and hoped the Knights would keep it afloat. Of course, journalistic independence had to be guaranteed; and that meant that John Allen runs things as he pleases, which ends up maintaining an outlet somewhat slightly to the right of Commonweal (which is what it already was before KofC stepped in). And Allen figures he has balance, since he has Fr Longenecker, Thomas Williams, Fr de Souza, Kathryn Jean Lopez (all of course at best moderately conservative, and save arguably for de Souza, rather shallow figures) as regulars to balance out Ivereigh et al. Worse, Ivereigh is obviously one of the staunchest supporters of this pontificate; a purge of his faction, Anderson likely fears, would mean Crux and the KofC would end up perceived as enemies of the Pope.

None of which is meant as a defense per se; but only to say that Crux wasn’t a conscious decision by the KofC to turn left. They bailed out a modestly left-leaning and very Francis-friendly Catholic media outlet, and now find themselves stuck with it unless they want to put themselves in Rome’s (and perhaps the US bishops’) crosshairs. A deft tactic might be to ween it off their revenues by pleading tight finances; but that would be merely avoiding a fight. Rorate Caeli may be on to something in urging Knights to speak with their mouths and their wallets to pressure the Knights about Crux; that might at least force them to consider the tight finances excuse.

On a broader point the KofC is certainly quite Americanist in its roots. But then so is pretty much damn near all of the Church in America, going right back to John Carroll and his family. So much of the American Catholic mission for the last 250 years has been to show that the Church is good enough for America, and its members are good Americans. Rather than the other way around.

15. Gary - August 24, 2017

Brothers, the K of C is a great organization, the Catholic Church is The True Faith. I’m not active right now, but I know many Catholic gentleman in the Knights. I’m sad that your councils aren’t like the ones I’ve been involved with. The Church has many members, but I think that many are struggling; you can thank Vatican 2 I believe. The pastors and chaplains are essential.
As we see on the daily news, we are under a diabolical disorientation; everything is upside down. Pray pray and pray, and go to confession.

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