This is a list of some of the offices in the Knights of Columbus along with a description, of sorts, of their duties.
Isn’t that grand? We have a Grand Knight. Why not Great Knight, or First Knight? I guess Good Knight would not work. Whatever we call him the Grand Knight is the highest ranking officer in the council. He presides over the councils meetings and is responsible for the successful conduct of the council.
Deputy Grand Knight
Almost makes the Grand Knight sound like a sheriff doesn’t it. Well its better than deputy good knight. The Deputy Grand Knight is the second in command within the council and assists the Grand Knight in the operation of council affairs. In our council he directs the efforts of the service program committee chairmen.
Chancellor is a mysterious title, and it is a mystery what exactly it is that the chancellor really does. His responsibilities include assisting the Grand Knight, but specifically he is charged with strengthening the members interest in council activities. That is, to get each individual member involved with one or more of the activities of the council. A recruiter of members within the council if you will.
With a group like this you need a warden, maybe even someplace to lock them up to keep the members safe from their commitments. The duties of the warden include supervising and maintaining the council’s property. He sets up the council chambers for meetings (at least he is supposed to.) He supervises the guards at meetings and ceremonials.
I told you we had a lockup here! The Guards are responsible for admitting only those qualified for meetings and ceremonials. They also assist the warden in his duties setting up the chambers.
The offices above are traditionally called the “Chairs”. These positions are a stepping stone to the Grand Knights position. The tradition is that the officers in these chairs move up the chain from Guards to Grand Knight. The rationale is that this 5 year training period will train the members to be able to handle the important duties of Grand Knight. Also during this period it will become apparent if any individual would not be able to perform the duties above, either because of time available, abilities or whatever. For this reason the tradition is not a hard and fast rule. Sometimes members drop out of the chairs, and occasionally someone might be inserted into the chairs. In any case the purpose of training and selecting qualified members to be Grand Knight should remain uppermost.
Other elected officers include:
No he is not an electronics expert. He does not have tapes or disk or any such stuff. What the recorder does is with simple pen and paper keeps a record of the actions of the council in a “Recorder’s Minute Book”.
Make sure he knows what the seventh commandment says. The Treasurer is in charge of all council funds. He receives, deposits, and disburses the funds of the council in cooperation with the Financial Secretary, the Trustees, and the Grand Knight.
No lawyers jokes now! They really aren’t that funny anyhow..........lawyers, that is! The Advocate sees that all the actions of the council are legal and that they follow the bylaws of the Knights of Columbus.
Deputies, Wardens, Trustees, what kind of institution do we have here. The Trustees are three members of the council. Traditionally we elect the three immediate Past Grand Knights. This helps foster continuity in the actions of the council.
Because the offices above often require some special talents, they are not part of the chairs and are elected year by year. This way extra qualified people can fill a position for several terms.
Other non-elected officers include:
The Chaplain is the spiritual advisor to the Council and works with the Grand Knight and other officers to insure that the actions of the council are truly parts of our Lord’s work.
In our council the Financial Secretary sees to it that all the funds that come into the treasury stays there. And he helps keep track of it, sort of. The duties of the Financial Secretary is twofold. First to collect the dues from the members and to help the Treasurer keep it. Second is to maintain the list of members within the council and work to keep brothers who are drifting away. The Financial Secretary is not elected but is appointed by the Supreme Knight for a 3 year term.
No. He does not present lectures, at least I have never heard one. He does have the responsibility to arrange suitable educational and entertaining programs for the council. He is in charge of presenting the “Good of the Order” section of council meetings. The Lecturer is appointed yearly by the Grand Knight.
Other offices beyond the council level.
No jokes here! I know when to be careful! The Supreme Knight is the CEO of our Order. He works with the Supreme Council to direct the Knights of Columbus in all their activities.
Another deputy. The State Deputy is the Supreme Knight’s representative in each state and is responsible for the operation of the councils in each state.
Here we go with the deputies again, we must have a posse by now. Each State is divided into districts. In our area each district is composed of somewhere between 4 and 6 councils. The District Deputy is the State Deputy’s representative in each district and works closely with each Grand Knight to further the works of our Order.
Well if we have a posse of deputies we need a lot of Wardens don’t we? The duties of the District Warden are not quite as arcane as those of the Council Chancellor but almost. What is known is that he carries the D.D’s robes, (sometime his golf clubs) makes sure he gets the right beverage after meetings and sees to the creature comforts of his DD. These are just some of the many offices within the organization of the Knights of Columbus. This writer hopes you will have a better understanding when some Mucky-muck is up at the podium introducing a bunch of more mucky-mucks. They really do deserve our respect, admiration and cooperation.