US leadership of the Knights of Columbus has sold out

Here’s another instance of that familiar pattern where pride, prestige and riches have caused Catholics to fall away. We’re talking about the executives that run the head office of the Knights of Columbus, not the rank and file, most of whom are solid Catholic heroes.

Did you know that the Supreme Knight in the US earns $1.2 million in compensation? Did you know that his predecessor was given a retirement “golden parachute” of $2 million? Other current executives earn hundreds of thousands of dollars each year.

But I digress. Anybody is allowed to run a legitimate business. The real problem is that as they rake in these big bucks, these professional Catholics at the top of the Knights are busy publicly defending dissenters and reprimanding faithful Knights. Check out the video below.

I think it’s time for the rank and file to start a revolution.

I also think we need to do some digging into the Canadian branch to see what’s going on up here.

8 thoughts on “US leadership of the Knights of Columbus has sold out

  1. I don’t see the executives’ salary as problem given that they run a massive insurance company that is on the Fortune 1000 list.

  2. That begs the question: why are the Knights running an insurance plan? How does that relate to their core apostolate? How many men have become Knights just to benefit from lower insurance rates and not because they want to work for the Church? This dilutes the membership and creates problems.

  3. The Knights’ insurance plan *IS* part of their historical mandate! The Knights were started back when few employers had any sort of benefits for their employees. Joining the Knights allowed a blue collar working man to get low-cost insurance make sure his grieving widow and children would be able to be looked after when he died.

  4. Let’s not rush to judgment here.

    It would be highly desirable that the two treacherous Senators be publicly dismissed from the order.

  5. There’s certainly nothing wrong with running an insurance company, especially if the profits are used to fund donations to good causes. But I wonder whether this is still necessary and a wise option for them. When the Knights were founded more than 120 years ago, there was rampant discrimination against Catholics such that it was difficult for them to get insurance. They were also often barred from labour unions. So it made sense at the time to launch an insurance company to protect workers.

    None of that applies today. The big insurance companies or unions won’t turn us away just because we’re Catholic. They don’t even ask. The website for the Knights insurance doesn’t claim to offer the lowest premiums so it’s hard to argue that they’re offering a better deal for the poor.

    In sum, while this was a very noble cause back in 1888, and its still a legitimate business today, I would no longer consider it an “apostolate”, unless they guarantee to insure every single member that approaches them (I didn’t find such claims on their website but I’m not an expert). So it has become just a business and no longer an apostolate. As I said, i worry that they might be attracting the wrong type of people who are just looking to save on their insurance (or are looking to run a large corporation) but they dissent from Church teaching. This could be undermining them from within. Is it worth it? Its certainly nice to be generating lots of cash that can be used for good causes, but at the risk of the soul of the organization? I don’t know if it’s worth the gamble.

  6. When you say the head of the Knights, are you referring to Karl Anderson, who has been so wonderfully vocal for the pro-life cause. A terrible disappointment if this is true. I don’t see how anyone can justify salaries of that level when working for a Christian organization. It’s the God and mammon thing that bugs me.

  7. It’s not just the money, althought that is very, very disburbing.

    The real problem is the idea that being pro-life is fine AS LONG AS it does not cost anything. The Knights have a soft sell approach to abortion, but when it comes to cracking the whip within the organization when the need arises and taking the hit, they ignore the problem.

    That’s not leadership. That’s complicity.

    That’s part and parcel of why they are OK with funding Rosica’s “Channel of Hope”. This is hardly a surprising development.

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