Some of the St. Anthony Council officers attended the District Meeting Saturday, January 11th. We had good attendance overall, and it was a constructive meeting led by our District Deputy Sean Fornelli. State Deputy Ron Boyce was also in attendance.
The most significant item I want to share with you: We reviewed at length the new exemplification; that is, the ceremony new candidates go through to join the order. While the history and values of our order have not changed, and are communicated clearly and effectively in this ceremony, the ceremony itself has changed considerably.
Here are the highlights of the New Exemplification:
- The ceremony covers Charity, Unity, Fraternity – all Candidates completing this ceremony are invested as 3rd Degree Members. There is no longer a 1st Degree-only initiation. Consider this a signal that the 1st/2nd/3rd Degree distinction will soon go away, replaced by a single Degree for Charity, Unity, and Fraternity. I am not aware of any changes to the Patriotic (4th) Degree.
- The ceremony is intended to be public, in front of friends, family, and our entire faith community. The exemplification could be carried out in Church following Mass. The secrecy is gone. Based on interviews of new members, and potential members, the secrecy of the initiation was a drawback for today’s prospective members. Also, Supreme see tremendous value in connecting the ceremony more closely with our parish community. By making the exemplification public and open, everyone in our community can witness the oath and commitment we are taking as Knights of Columbus.
- A Priest is involved. The new exemplification is opened and closed by a Priest, leading the assembly in prayer.
- The ceremony has been simplified. The process takes less than 30 minutes.
- The history and values of the order, along with the commitments Knights make to the order, the Church, and to God, have not changed.
- All existing 1st Degree members are encouraged to participate soon. Existing 1st Degree members are expected to attend one of these exemplifications, along with new candidates, to get their 3rd Degree.
We will be using the New Exemplification at our initiation this Tuesday, January 14th at the regular meeting time. This first one won’t be open to the public. Any and all 1st Degree Knights should consider attending and getting their 3rd Degree at the same time as the new candidates.
You can learn more about the new exemplification by reviewing this video. There is an introduction by Supreme Knight Carl Anderson that explains the reasoning behind the change. Then, they perform the entire exemplification on video.
Here’s the link: https://vimeo.com/374081431/eed24d18e9
Edwin L. Diehl III
Grand Knight, St. Anthony Council 2439