Wednesday, October 09, 2019

New regalia. No Knights.

I don't know who thought this was a good idea--but it's not.
Our parish concluded our beautiful 40 Hours devotion with a glorious Mass last night. It was a celebration of Christ incarnate in the Holy Eucharist and as such, it included profound reverence, gorgeous music, and zealous preaching—the perfect antidote to the secularized Catholic culture which has largely abandoned the belief in the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist.

One aspect that was missing from this Mass as compared to the recent past, however, was the Knights of Columbus. In past years, we would have a dozen or so 4th degree Knights in full regalia present. This year, we had four men in tuxes only, holding the canopy over the Blessed Sacrament during the procession after Mass. Where have all our knights gone?

Well, as it happens, the KoC board of directors decided that as of July 1, 2019, the "old" regalia of the Knights of Columbus is to be discarded. Only the new regalia — which looks like something designed by Hugo Chavez, the deceased socialist dictator of Venezuela — may be worn. As a result, the representation of the Knights in full 4th degree regalia at our 40 Hours went from about 8-12 each year... zero.

Back in 2017, when this controversy first erupted, Supreme Knight Carl Anderson explained the rationale for this change in an email. He said, in part:
"The new uniform is part of a comprehensive and necessary effort to keep our Order relevant and attractive to men, particularly younger men."
If causing the Knights to basically disappear from our parish ceremonies was part of this comprehensive strategy to make the Order "relevant and attractive to men, particularly younger men"...well, great job guys.

I would argue that this type of truly foolish misstep is what commonly happens when you have a group of older guys deciding what they think the younger guys might like. To my brother knight, Mr. Anderson, I would humbly suggest that as long as you are living, no decision is forever and clinging to a bad one in the face of overwhelming evidence only compounds the error. The time has come to rescind this unpopular diktat and reinstate the old regalia. Or at least give our brothers permanent permission to wear it.

Or, you can keep enforcing this bad decision until the membership goes the
way of the Sisters of Mercy or Sisters of Saint Joseph.
As for myself, a 4th Degree Knight who never joined the color guard but looked forward to doing so when the responsibilities of middle age subsided, I have no desire to dress like a South American socialist dictator. Perhaps at some point I'll inherit someone's "old" regalia which I can keep in a closet until it may be worn again without disobeying the mandates of the guys at the top.

1 comment:

Catholic Legal Beagle said...

I'm a Knight of Columbus too and completely agree with you. The new uniform is AWFUL!