Dressing-Down the Knights of Columbus’ New Uniform


According to multiple sources in Catholic media, during the 135th Convention of the Knights of Columbus, Supreme Knight Carl Anderson made an announcement that the Fourth Degree will no longer use the plumed hats and capes that have been the staple of pomp and parades, great feasts and civic celebrations, as well as solemn occasions of bereavement and remembrance for over 70 years. According to Anderson, the Knights of Columbus are in need of “modernization” even though in his annual report, membership continues to grow and the Knights donated a record amount to charity in the past year. If the Knights of Columbus isn’t broken, why fix it?

The Knights are a conspicuous and active defender of Holy Mother Church. Especially considering what is happening to our Christian brothers and sisters in Europe and the Middle East, the saber and baldric are not merely symbolic, but a necessity. In America, we have the luxury of fighting for religious freedom through the ballot and the courts, but in the strife and carnage of Syria and Iraq, Christians have seen their churches burned down, their homes bombed, and their lives torn apart. They are fighting for their lives, but the Knights are helping at least one town rebuild now that ISIS is being routed from Iraq. A century ago, the Knights were also at the forefront of religious freedom when they supported the Cristeros in opposition to the brutal anti-Catholic repression in the aftermath of the Mexican Revolution and many Knights were martyred for their defense of the faith.

A few months ago, the National “Catholic” Reporter–famous for their heterodox tendencies–ran what they probably imagined was supposed to be a hit piece on the Knights of Columbus, but it reads more like a recruiting brochure. In addition to many ways that the Knights fight for religious freedom, they also perform many other good works in ways large and small, from fish fries, coat drives, and supporting the needs of the local parish to funding EWTN, the Vatican press office, and recently moving into the digital media space with the acquisition of Crux. As the supposed “exposé” makes clear, the Knights of Columbus are a vigorous and dynamic organization with strong growth and an active membership. It makes one wonder exactly why the organization needs to be “modernized.”

The chapeau and cape are admittedly antiquated, perhaps more in character for a Gilbert and Sullivan operetta than the 21st century. However, the proposed replacement of a beret is oddly reminiscent of third world dictators and Communist revolutionaries. Even the Army no longer uses the beret with combat fatigues and is considering bringing back the classic “pinks and greens” as an alternative to the current beret and service uniform. Both the military and the Catholic Church are steeped in rich traditions, full of deep significance and meaning. Indeed, many religious orders have nicknames which are simply the color of their habits such as the Blackfriars (Dominicans), Whitefriars (Carmelites), Greyfriars (Conventual Franciscans), and Brownfriars (Capuchins). A uniform is the ultimate expression of identity and belonging and should not be changed or discarded lightly.

As Mark Twain famously observed, “Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence in society.” As the popularity of ripped jeans, cargo shorts, and “athlesiure” wear attests, there are many people who give little thought to their appearance these days. The change in uniform was perhaps conceived as a way to appeal to the younger generation, but if anything, it is only even more off-putting. Among this writer’s circle of friends and fellow Knights on social media under the age of 40, the new uniform is the subject of unanimous ridicule. The whole point of the Fourth Degree is to give the Knights of Columbus a sense of prestige and exclusivity which is a source of civic pride and a recruiting tool. The new uniform utterly fails in both respects.

Likewise, what is a knight without his sword? According to the Knights of Columbus Twitter account, the saber will remain a part of the regalia, but this only raises more questions. Perhaps it’s a matter of taste, but wearing both a long necktie and the baldric seems too busy. At the same time, the baldric will have a tendency to pull down on the tie choking the wearer. Additionally, many Knights have antique swords which have been passed on from father to son for generations. Thus, the formal white gloves are not only for looks, but have the essential function of protecting the hilts of these priceless family heirlooms from rust and wear. From this, we can only conclude that the new uniform was hastily conceived and little thought was given to either sartorial or practical considerations which might have been easily obtained had the membership been consulted in this decision.

Supreme Knight Anderson’s announcement includes a caveat that Fourth Degree assemblies will be able to continue using the old regalia on a “limited basis” but it is unclear what this will mean in practice. Hopefully this is an opening for a compromise that will allow assemblies to use both the formal regalia and the new uniform in parallel as appropriate for different settings. While the former is unquestionably more appropriate for solemn liturgical observances, the latter might be more appropriate for summertime wear on patriotic celebrations like the Fourth of July–or, for more traditionally minded parishes, not at all. However, if there is to be no compromise, then this is a terrible decision which will reduce the Fourth Degree to a distinction without a difference and will only sow division and disunity among the ranks of the Knights.

All people–whether they recognize it or not–have a natural and deep yearning for traditions and continuity with the past, and this is especially true of converts like your humble columnist. If we want to change the world for the better–and as Christians, this is what we are called to do–we must remain faithful to what makes us unique. Saint Michael the Archangel is depicted as a warrior and protector of the Church. In a similar way, the Knights of Columbus are always waging spiritual warfare as a strong and vigorous arm of the Ecclesia Militans. Like the typical depiction of Saint Michael in armor and bearing a sword, the Fourth Degree regalia is an iconic expression of our mission. If it must be replaced–and it is not clear this is the case–we deserve something with gravitas and visual impact that the proposed design utterly lacks.

The views expressed here are those of the author, and do not necessarily represent the views of CatholicVote.org


About Author

Joshua Bowman joined in full communion with the Catholic Church in 2010 after many years in the spiritual wilderness. He recently moved back to his beloved native Virginia from Columbus, Ohio with his growing family and writes on religion, politics, history, and geographical curiosities.


  1. As a convert I have viewed the Knights like the Masons. Men in hats who like costumes. I don’t care for berets, but this is at least a move forward.

    • Robert, I am the wife of a Knight. My husband has been with the K of C for 38 years, since he graduated from high school. The Knights of Columbus most certainly cannot be compared to the Masonic orders, which are not organized with any church. They are also not a secret society.

      As stated in the article, the Knights are the face of honorable, faithful, Catholic manhood. They are tireless in their support of the holy Catholic Church. They busy themselves with everything from parish spiritual support and service projects, to renovation projects at the Vatican. At my parish, they have arranged for the upkeep of the church property, raising and donating money for the very expensive renovation of our 100+ year old pipe organ, and various other property upkeep projects, from the professional polishing of the marble floors to pulling weeds and planting flower beds. They comfort and pray for widows and orphans. They support underprivileged children and families. They put themselves at the disposal of their pastors and the Pope, to serve in whatever way they are asked. Worldwide, they are currently involved in the protection and care of Middle Eastern victims of war.

      Their dress attire is a mark of respect to God and the Church, dating from the late 19th century. What they wear depends on the occasion. They are in full regalia when they are serving as an honor guard at Mass, or standing at attention for hours at a funeral home to pray for the deceased and comfort family and friends. If it is a matter of working around the parish or assisting at an informal parish dinner, they may wear a t-shirt or golf shirt with the K of C emblem with khakis or jeans.

      No matter what they are wearing or what the occasion may be, these men are faithful, decent representatives of the Catholic Church, encouraging others in prayer and service to God. Peace to all here – Susan, ofs

    • Dr. Norberto Cruz, Jr., PGK, PFN on

      If you view the Knights of Columbus like the Masons, you certainly don’t know your Catholic faith. To equate the 2 organizations as you have is insulting. The difference between the 2 organizations is huge. I would strongly suggest you do some research.

    • You need to think of the substance rather than the superficial appearance. The Knights of Columbus embrace the TRUTH–the Masons are actually anti-Catholic.

      • Joseph G. Vuknic Jr. on

        Read the history of why the Knights were formed. Formed because of the charity work being done during the bad times . Farther McGivney saw this and used this example to establish the KC. Surely the Shriners’ Hospitals and burn Units are not anti-Catholic? Try and practice the Beatitudes. Viva Jesus

  2. Jeffrey Pearce on

    I joined the Knights because of my late Father-in-law he took great pride in the uniform. I am now the Commander of the honor Guard and will not be using this new outfit that they call a uniform.

  3. You really should read your commentary in light of the actual existing military orders: the Knights of Malta and the Knights of the Holy Sepulcher. Neither uses a sword as part of their vestments. So, “what is a knight without his sword?” seems rather silly. Also, the Knights of the Holy Sepulcher use berets.

    This is, of course, not to say that I like the new regalia. I think it looks far too much like the KoC is impersonating military veterans.

    A comment I saw on facebook said it best, “This looks like what a 60 year old thinks a 20 year old would like”

  4. I for one a convert who’s regalia was handed down to him by a very worthy former supreme Knight will not be up upgrading.

  5. I am the current (and past) Faithful Navigator in my Assembly. This article is an excellent use of measured language on the regalia fiasco. The military dictator look was my first reaction. I wonder, too, what incentive priests will have in including Knights in the Mass now. I mean, why do you need a dozen commercial airline pilots in the procession? Lol! Note also that this is coming from a long-haired, bearded, Birkenstock wearing dude. I have already fielded many emails from the Sir Knights in my Assembly just straight up stating they will never, ever wear the “Mussolini outfit”.

    • Jack Cunningham on

      I am a past PGA PFN and aFDD ln my opinion what needs to be changed are the executive and anybody else who had a voice in making this discussion I know I will not be attending any more
      Honor guards and a lot of my brother knights will not be attending
      Jack Cunningham

  6. The new uniform looks like a business suit….are the Knights saying they are a business now. And the beret looks silly.

  7. Kathleen Rimlinger on

    what is next dressing down the Swiss Guard..sorry guys don’t like the new uniform and cold day in hell when my budget invests in your new uniform…Lost a 4th degree knight boys as my budget is not replacing the regalia!

  8. As a 4th Degree Knight, our capes and chapeaux of various colors are conversation starters as people want to know what the different colors mean. Our Regalia lets people know we are present and does help promote the Knights and help to get new members. These new uniforms will not help us be the visible right arm of the Church!

  9. Sounds like the Knights are being infiltrated. Was wondering when this would commence. The classic uniform of the 4th degree Knights of Columbus was one of the last vestiges of traditional Catholicism left. Much like the Swiss Guards. I often wondered why they have been allowed to exist. Well, sounds like they’re going after them now. Same thing happened with the Religious Orders. First, shorten the skirt, then take off the scapular. And, who need a veil. And before you know it, the Order is dissolved. These things are intentional and very sad. Interestingly, the new uniform looks like some of the soldiers from communist countries. Very sad!

  10. Have talked to members of our Assembly and they have said they will drop out of the Kof C entirely be fore they will wear those ridiculously looking uniforms. Instead of getting new members you will be losing the older members. There won’t be a color guard at our assembly or church. This was a BAD decision on the Board of Directors.

  11. I think the new uniforms look sharp. The attention is now on the purpose of the order and not the pomp and circumstance.

    • I don’t know your age so I’ll keep my comments to the point. The Church did away with a lot of pomp and circumstance after Vatican II and look where it is, losing members! We do not have 40 hr devotions, Christ the King parades, novenas and the like anymore.

  12. As the Faithful Pilot of my Assembly, I must say that I am outraged by the unilateral decision of the Supreme Knight and the committee members. The Fourth Degree Knights should have been consulted and given a chance to vote on the change to our regalia. These uniforms are too militant looking. Any African-American Sir Knight will look like a member of the Black Panthers with those berets. The jackets look like the sweaters worn by the Lambda Lambda Lambda, an all homosexual fraternity. In the uniform military code, wearing a hat (chapeau or beret) while indoors violates protocol unless the person is under arms. So wearing a beret indoors without carrying a sword is just wrong.

  13. My husband is a fourth degree honor guard…and is not happy with the new look. For me, the design looks like something for military school, it would be a great formal outfit for those young boys in the Knight’s Squires.

  14. Peter A Golato on

    I just became a 4th degree Knight and I have to tell you how disappointed I was to learn of this change. I just purchased a tux and my family purchased a sword and full regalia for me. I simply do not understand why this was not put to a vote of the entire brotherhood of 4th degree Knights. I love the organization but this was a very bad decision made by a few individuals. I hope we can get the overturned as I can see many Knights walking away.

  15. Myreya Hinojosa on

    Sorry, but the new uniform reminds me of the Olympic USA team.
    The Knights are recognaized worldwide because of the current regalia….
    Please reconsider this change.. and go back…

  16. Elizabeth Roberts on

    My husband has been in the Knights of Columbus for 30 years and in the Color Corp for 27 of those years. The regalia has been a bright point at many celebrations. They have been there for deceased Knights to honor them. Their families request their presence. I feel a very terrible decision has been made to change the regalia. They are not in the military. They are a Catholic organization and the regalia is a special distinction as to who they are. The men are proud to wear the cape, chapeau & sword. By having just a select few make such an important decision is definitely unjust. All of the 4th degrees should have had a say in this decision not just those that don’t know what they are doing and did not thoroughly think it through. I think that this decision should be overturned and a vote of all the 4th degree should take place as to what changes should be made. The worse part of the new uniform idea is the beret. It is ridiculous. They would look like they belonged to some foreign military corp. THIS IS A VERY OUTRAGEOUS IDEA.

  17. Sir Kinght James R. Deaven on

    No, no, no! this is just plain wrong! The Sir Knights of the Color Guards should be making all decisions regarding their service. Dictating a dictator-like uniform is not in the best interest of our order. Pay attention! All those orders that modernized their traditional dress have radically declined. Don’t do this to the Color Guards!

  18. Laurence Lefebvre on

    I am a Color Guard 4th degree Knights of Columbus. One item that separates myself from my brother 4th degree members is the reguila, the red cape, in my position, followed by the white cape reguila, to honor a past faithful navigator, a green cape with a green plumed chapeau, representing the Color Core Commander, and a yellow capemail with a yellow plumed chapeau, representing the State Color Core Commander. What an honor to have these Color Core members, amongst others, to be at conventions, parades, and other distinguish events, to give a red cape member an opportunity to increase in rank, rather than degree, among fellow 4th degree members. Its always a pleasure to explain to others the differences between members of the Core. When we are requested to participate at wakes and funerals, the families can’t thank us enough for the presence of being their to honor their passing of their loved one. Again, as a Color Guard members, in the 4th degree, we are honored to wear our reguala, to honor the passing of a Brother Knight. By eliminating the Cape and chapeau, you are asking my Brother Core members to give up a part of what we stand for and accept a uniform that doesn’t distinguish, any rank for those who have given the extra, to promote the 4th degree Color Core. The Swiss guards, who are always present for formal events for our Most Holy Father, have never considered a uniform change, and they represent the Catholic Church as well as our Most Holy Father. We are proud, or I am proud to wear the Cape, tuxedo, chapeau, sword and sash, to stand out as a member of the 4th degree Color Guard Knights of Columbus. Years ago, a uniform change could have been made, but would have been voted down, in my estimation, because the regalia that allows us to stand out for position we represent in the Color Core 4th degree, Knights of Columbus. I Ask the the Supreme Council to reconsider the uniform change, and always accept our love for the regalia which we wear proudly. I am a proud member and Past Grand Knight of Rev. Robert A Nugent Council 11160 Saint Michael the Archangel South Glens Falls New York 12803. May we all pray to Fr, Michael McGivney for his guidance in this matter.

  19. The new uniform does not look appropriate and looks like a uniform for some para military group. Hopefully the old uniform will be maintained for the order!

  20. As the Color Corps Commander at our Assembly, I can tell you that this change is so wrong on many fronts. First, as a retired 20 year Navy veteran, once any uniform change is allowed to occur, it creates a slippery slope of endless uniform changes, just ask the Navy, which has suffered from this affliction for over 30 years now. Second, I am retired from the military, and do not care to look like some military school graduate. Finally, being that we were not asked for an opinion in advance, I will state mine now and ask the leadership at Supreme to please reconsider this idea, which I am sure that was made with good intention, but will end up with an outcome that will not be the desired one.

  21. Henry F. Key on

    The majority of 4th Degree Knights are outraged over this uniform change. Many years ago the 4th Degree wore tophats and tails. When they changed over to a “plain” tuxedo with plumed chapeau and cape, there was probably a similar outrage over the changes. But the 4th Degree survived and moved on. Now a lot of members are threatening to either quit the 4th Degree or to just rebel against Supreme Knight and refuse to wear the new uniform. We are sad to see these members go, but it is time for the rest of us to move on with our lives. Although I dont like everything about the new uniform , overall I think it looks good and will wear it PROUDLY! I’m a former 4th Degree member who dropped out for financial reasons. I am planning on rejoining the Degree as soon as this new uniform is fully implemented. I just cannot afford to spend a lot of money on a tuxedo and regalia which is being phased out and then shell out even more money on the new design.

    Since everyone else is giving their opinion on the new uniform, now I’ll give mine. The new uniform is a big improvement over the tuxedo and bowtie.To me there is somthing very unmanly about a bowtie. It looks very wimpy and nerdy. Tuxedos and bowties may be fine for Hollywood playboys at a high society Hollywood party, but they are not appropriate for Knights. Also, it is my understanding that the Supreme Council has assured us that the color guards and honor guards will continue to use the ceremonial swords. (Apparantly the group modelling the new uniform at the Supreme Convention were not carrying swords). The carrying of swords suggests a military look. There is nothing military looking about a tuxedo. No military branch in any country wears tuxedos and wimpy bowties that I know of. As for the berets, I feel they look more manly and military than ostrich feathers. In the military it is mostly the elite forces that wear the beret.(Green Berets, Rangers, etc.) Since the 4th Degree color and honor guards are the most elite faction in the K of C, the elite beret is entirely appropriate. Yes I am actually wanting to rejoin the 4th Degree BECAUSE of the new uniform! And when I do, as I said before, I’ll wear it PROUDLY, as should all Sir Knights. Vivat Jesus!

    • The proposed new uniform is going to cost $500 and can only be ordered directly from Supreme. You say you dropped out for financial reasons. now what?

      • Brother Park, My financial situation has improved somewhat since the time I dropped out. I am still on a low income, (retired and living on only social security) but doing okay, and can afford to rejoin the Assembly now. The problem is it will take time for all Sir Knights to make the transition to the new uniform, and many are refusing to do so. So for a while everone will still be wearing the old regalia. If I rejoin now it will cost about $500 or more for the old style regalia plus a sword, plus another $200 or so for a tuxedo, just so I can wear what everyone else is weaing.Then, if Supreme makes the new uniform absolutely mandatory, I’ll have to shell out another $500 for the new uniform. That’s over $1200 plus my dues which are in arrears. ( As far as I know the Assembly never officially suspended me). Maybe it woud be better to wait and see what Supreme will do with this uniform change. If they get enough outcry from the membership maybe they’ll rescind their decision and cancel the change. Then I’ll only have to pay for the old regalia plus a tux. If however they go ahead with the new style, then I’ll only have to pay for the new, plus save even more because I won’t need the tuxedo.(All of the above is based on my desire to march with the Color Corps, which I really want to do.) Another option is to rejoin the Assembly now by only buying the tuxedo for now and waiting a while to join the Color Corps later on.
        This uniform change will be a financial burden for all of us, and I agree it should have been voted on by the membership. Of course Supreme knew if they did that it never would have passed. I hope this does not hurt the Fouth Degree too much. What a mess! Vivat Jesus!

        • Sir Knight Key, I am excited that you plan to update your 4th Degree membership! What I recommend is that you contact your Assembly’s Faithful Comptroller and see what he can do. For example, my FC has been known to forgive a few dues for a SK who wants to get up to date. As far as the regalia, I would hold off for now, better let the smoke clear before you start shopping.

          • Henry F. Key on

            Sir Knight Park, Thank you for your kind words and your helpful advice. Rest assured your recommendation will be followed and perhaps my membership will be back in good standing sooner than I thought it would. As for joining the Color Corps I will wait to see which uniform is finally mandated. With a large enough outcry from the membership, maybe Supreme will reconsider and keep the old regalia. Whichever style finally is chosen, the old or the new, I will wear it proudly!

    • I respect each persons opinion on this subject. I do not understand your thinking the 4th Degree Knights should look military. 4th Degree Knights are NOT a group that is suppose to put fear in the minds of people like the military does or make people feel safe which the military also does. Our function is to be seen as a group that honors the Bishop at confirmation, honor a deceased member etc.

  22. Obviously Supreme Knight Anderson and his council have way too much time on their hands.

    These new school-boyish looking uniforms for the 4th degree completely destroy the proud and colorful tradition that make the 4th degree honor guards stand out in a crowd.

    Seems like the decision to change was made in secret – like the original Healthcare act which had to be passed to know what was in.

    The uniform wasn’t broken so why try to fix it?

  23. The “excuse” given was because young men were not joining due to the outdated regalia. My son is 27, a new member of the Color Corps, and wears his regalia with pride. He was saddened to see the email earlier in the week about the change, and when he saw the picture of the new uniform he had two words…”It’s stupid.”
    The Knights are recognized world-wide for their distinctive look. This new “uniform” is neither distinctive, recognizable, or even unique. This was a bad decision. Period.

    • I’m 29 and my husband is 31. He’s in the color guard. We think it’s a hideous looking uniform. We also can’t afford a new uniform which means he will probably drop out.

  24. Sir Knight John Broxon on

    Thank you for your solid insights. The traditional regalia may have done well some small changes, but this large revision is not to my liking at all. Most Sir Knights I know would not support this change, so I don’t know who was consulted about the change. Supreme cannot afford to alienate our older Sir Knights, who do so much for their Assemblies and Councils. The new uniform is more reflective of scouting than knighthood. As the owner of my grandfather’s sword, I look forward to handing this sword to my grandchildren, but only if it is part of the uniform.

  25. The new KoC 4th degree outfits are unaffordable for far too many Catholics.
    The Church is supposed to be “universal” which means open to all. So, why wasn’t common sense used when coming up with a new uniform? Most people can’t afford designer clothing. It appears the leadership of the Knights of Columbus are snobbish and want exclusiveness. Shame on them.

    • I agree! If Supreme had to force this new uniform on us without a vote of the membership, they should have used some common sense and made it more affordable to the members. According to the K of C website store the uniform costs $510 WITHOUT the shirt and the lapel pin. And you can’t buy the pieces individually, you must buy the full set all at once. The website brags about how the suit is tailored in Italy from the finest Italian wool. If the suit was made in America using a less expensive fabric it would probably look just as good as the imported Italian wool suit, but cost much less. And at the same time it would help the American economy by supporting American businesses. Most of us are Americans. How many Councils and Assemblies do we have in Italy? Also, If Supreme really wanted to help their members out they should come up with some sort of payment plan for their members. If not that, then at least let us buy the suit one piece at a time thus spreading the cost out over several months. A lot of us don’t have a credit card, We must pay the $510 upfront all at once. This new uniform really hurts a lot of us financially – a lot!

  26. As a PGK, FDD and Commander for approx 20 years, I was taken back by the change.
    I thought it a cruel joke until verified and demonstrated.
    Disappointed at 1st but recognizing the source to be serious, I remembered my oath to obey provided it “does not violate my religious or civil duties.
    That said I will eventually comply. But, it does not “a happy camper make”. There likely will be compromises and a very large number of Sir Knights go into early retirement – some old some fairly new.
    What I will miss most are the wide eyes of the children given a chance to hold (with ample supervision) my sword. A gift of the moment they will long remember.
    They and their fathers are the future of more than just the knights. They are looking for answers. They are the ones whose memories of the pomp and ceremonies will leave them with just 1 more touch of respect for the ceremonies, graduations, 1st communions, wakes, some weddings, confirmations and yes even parades.
    Yes there are all degrees of participation, by Sir Knights and some who could use lesson on dress and marching but over all those that partake are doing so as the patriotic and or respectful most obvious arm of the Church.
    Although I respect our military and our police I don’t feel (except at wakes and funerals) they belong in church processions or accompanying the gifts to the alter.
    Fortunately, we Sirs are being given a honeymoon period but I hope for a less liberal or radical change.

  27. Henry F. Key on

    I just found out this new uniform is only available from the K of C Store (online). and that it costs $510 NOT INCLUDING the shirt or the lapel pin. Then, it comes unfinished so you have to take it to a professional tailor and pay even more for finishing alterations. Also, it is only available as a full set – individual pieces are not for sale at this time. There is no accumulating the suit one piece at a time to make smaller purchases over time as I planned on doing. Unless you have a credit card on which you can make monthly payments (I don’t) you need to pay the full $510 all at once. Does Supreme think we are all rich fatcats? I am NOT looking for anyone’s pity, but my only income (Social Security) has me living well below the federal poverty level. I still plan on rejoining my local Assembly ASAP, but it will be a very long time before I can save up enough to buy this new uniform If Supreme expects us to switch over to this new uniform they should at least make it a little easier to purchase. Years ago I used to jokingly refer to the 4th Degree as “The Rich Man’s Degree”. Now I still call it that, but, unfortunately I’m not joking anymore! Vivat Jesus!

  28. I’m a 4th Degree Knight. Those new uniforms are hideous… look like Girl Scouts instead of Knights. Will we be selling thin mints with our insurance. Perhaps we are off to boarding school… wow, what were they thinking at Supreme???

  29. I can’t remember a time where I’ve seen such nearly universal alignment scorning a decision that was made without involvement of a membership body. Surely our leadership will do the responsible thing, and do it soon, before we lose our sir knights and worthy honor guard members and fracture our order.

  30. if you think our change is bad, read about changes to the Navy’s uniforms. Change for the sake of change is never good.

    Anybody have Carl’s e-mail address?

  31. I am a member of the 4th degree for about 18 years. My parish is in South jersey. My parish was started back in 2000. We have the latin mass all our sacraments are in latin.we follow the 1962 missal of pope st.john 23.we color Corp for our special masses.are 4th degree won’t change our regalia we will keep our tuxes,swords,etc. Wm.J.

  32. Wm.J. Aug 13 2017 I belong to the 4th degree for 18 yrs. Our 4th degree knights won’t change our regalia at all. Our masses are 1962 the missal ofSt.John 23rd .i dont want to look like a dictator.

  33. I have been the Faithful Navigator twice since I became a fourth degree member. It seems to me that it’s very easy for a handful of board members to make decisions for hundreds of 4th. The degree.
    Why don’t you take the advise of the majority of the membership and
    leave things alone. You are going to lose a great deal of members taking this rediculous change in uniform.
    If you are going to make this unwanted chsnge, go and spring for the money it will cost for said change. Then, you will see who really wants to to keep making these stupid decisions. Get a life, do you realize how many members are getting to old for these mistakes you make a a board meeting without consulting the actual membership.

  34. Why couldn’t the Knights have contracted to an American company that makes sports jackets vice a sole source contract to an Italian company? I thought we were trying to bring jobs back to America. This uniform is supposed to depict patriotism. Sure seems odd that a potential $110 million contract goes to an Italian company vice American. Plus, it makes it harder to acquire this uniform.

  35. If I can believe my Erin raised grandmother who emigrated to the US at the turn of the century…”the Masons took an oath to walk knee deep in Catholic blood”. Grandma rarely lied, but I think that she may have been a bit too Catholic!

    When I was being raised in the faith we rarely saw the Knights, except when the Bishop visited. Then my brother-in-law became a knight and I got interested in their allegiance to the church and more importantly, their allegiance to Christopher Columbus. Years after praising Columbus for discovering the New World, I was intrigued to research his history. I was shocked to find that Columbus was a gold seeker for Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand of Spain. Columbus also discovered the kind and generous Taino natives on the island of Hispaniola… now Haiti and the Dominican Republic. Columbus’ conquistadores murdered nearly 85% of the Taino people. Columbus’ brother Bartholomew accompanied him on his second voyage and recorded the madness. Finally, he ordered several hundred Taino men, many fathers of families, aboard his ships to be handed over to the Queen as slaves. Many died on the horrible voyage back to Spain. When Columbus finally left Hispaniola the Taino population was down to 15% of what it was before Columbus’ intrusion.

    Given that past, how should we view Columbus? His memorial at Columbus Circle in NYC is under s

  36. The whole issue of the new fourth degree and the way it has been implemented is a “slap in the face” to every I am a fourth degree knight in the father Patrick Dooley Assembly (#2422) in Sandpoint Idaho. I was a color guard member until illness restricted my ability to stand for more than short periods of time. I feel that the new uniform and the manner in which it has been implemented is a “slap in the face” to all fourth degree members.

    The “old’ fourth degree uniform (social) or full regalia (color guard) is recognized around the world, i.e, it has Catholic Identity. This identity is being abandoned for what reason??

    The new uniform as I understand it has been in the planning stage for several years, but intentionally kept under wraps. The fourth degree members around the country were not asked if they felt a new uniform was in order nor were they allowed to give their opinion of the new design prior to its adoption. It was determined by supreme and a limited “focus group”. Many, if not most of the State Deputies were told of and shown the new uniform only after it was released.

    The new uniform does not maintain the respect of the present (semi) formal attire during formal church functions.. The new uniforms resembles some junior ROTC uniform at best and some third world paramilitary organization at worst. I truly wonder why if Supreme was going to “dictate” (Sieg Heil) this style to all of us they did not go all the way and include the “Jack Boots’ distinctive strut (Goose Step anyone) and gemütlich marching song. The retention of the sword was only decided upon within the last month. Years of planning??

    I for one will not wear the new uniform. I will continue to wear the old uniform well beyond next years deadline or until asked to resign from the fourth degree. I am not alone.

  37. Sir Knight Dr. Anthony V. Potts, CDR, MSC, USN,(ret) on

    A couple thoughts on the new uniform. First, it looks like what our Veterans would wear at the their VFW gatherings, not Knights. If the old regalia is not relevant any longer, then why call ourselves Knights? The new uniform does not reflect anything Knightly. It is only a business suit with a French beret. The 4th degree is suppose to be something above and beyond the ordinary. This new uniform makes the 4th degree look terribly ordinary and common.
    The regalia is not the reason young men are not joining. And to use a sword with a business suit is ridiculous.
    Lastly, on a financial note, many new 4th degree Knights have committed a lot of money for the old regalia. For the Supreme Knight and the Board not to have warned them that this change was being considered shows a total lack of consideration for brother Knights. All 4th degree Knights should have had a vote on this radical change. In good faith, the new 4th degree members have spent considerable moneys to participate in all the 4ht degree ceremonies. These men should be reimbursed.

    Sir Knight Dr. Anthony V. Potts, CDR, MSC, USN(ret)

  38. One of the reasons I went for the Forth Degree was to join the Color Guard. With the ridiculous change Supreme has made without seeking the input of its Assembly members, I personally will leave my Assembly and only stay within my council. I can not personally recommend anyone to become involved with the color guard. This change is nothing more than a slap in the face to all Forth Degree Members who take pride in their appearance and tradition in the Color Guard. What a shame! How many members will drop out of their assemblies. This change will have dire consequences on future growth for the Forth Degree.

  39. My husband died in May and was a member of the Fourth Degree. I now have two capes, my Dad’s and Leon’s. I was going to donate them to our local chapter, but with them doing away with them, what can I do with them and Leon’s chapeau?

  40. Brother Sir Knights, I am in agreement with the many of you who are concerned about the loss of tradition. My grandfather was a fourth degree for over 60 years and on his passing, I as a third degree at the time, inherited his regalia. It was for this reason that I felt the calling to become a fourth degree and honor his life in this small way. It saddens me to have to shelf his gift to me to put on this new world order mostrosity. I remain a Roman Catholic and a fourth degree but doubt you will catch me in the new attire.

  41. I find the timing interesting.
    Did the current leadership who made this decision just come over from BSA? Be vigilant, BSA is done.

  42. All this has done is destroy the color guard at my assembly. As of now there are no Sir Knights buying the new uniforms. These men still honor the 4th degree, their church and their faith, but have lost respect for the top leaders running the Knights of Columbus. Most of the members are over 45 years and older and truly enjoy wearing their regalia at church, parades, and honorably at funerals. There are 51 Sir Knights in our assembly and 16 with regalia but that will change soon. Also most said they will not walk behind the new militant looking uniforms if they are ask by other assemblies. Supreme Knight you have ruined the Honor of the Knights of Columbus and should be ashamed of what you and your Directors have done, especially at the salary you all receive. You are not going to get new members, but loose the ones that help build the Knights of Columbus.

  43. The Regalia change will not fix the membership problem among younger people. That problem is that young men are simply abandoning the Church altogether. Changing the Regalia will hurt, not help our outreach to the remnant who want to become Catholic gentlemen. The notion that switching to this pathetic uniform will fix membership is asinine.

    I was enthusiastically a knight from 1999-2002. Then came the clergy abuse scandal. I discovered that the Supreme Chaplain was none other than Thomas Daily, who shuffled abusive, pedophile priests between parishes, and was largely unrepentant of it. Because of this, I abandoned the Knights for several years, but was blessed to find a wonderful council when I moved. I returned with passion, joined Color Corps, and felt a part of something special.

    Now, I honestly don’t see the point. Our Charity work is great, and we will continue to do what we do in the parish, but the pageantry and ceremony was a critical part of our outreach and spirit. This has been delivered a gut punch by Supreme – the same Supreme that courted Bishop Daily years ago. Time for a change.

    Just really saddened by all this. It’s a symptom of a larger problem.

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