While we are currently supporting existing circles, councils/assemblies in the U.S. and Canada are asked to not start any new circles. Consistent with our new Building the Domestic Church Initiative councils are asked to meet with their chaplains to discuss furthering their support of parish based youth ministry. Please read the Supreme Knight's column in the January issue of Columbia for more information about the Building the Domestic Church initiative and its impact on our support and service to Catholic youth.
The Columbian Squires, the official youth organization of the Knights of Columbus, is a leadership development program for young Catholic men, 10-18 years old. Local units, called circles, are found throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico, the Philippines, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, the Bahamas and Guam.
- The Squires is designed to develop young men as leaders who understand their Catholic religion, who have a strong commitment to the Church and who are ready, willing and capable of patterning their lives after the Youth Christ.
- A Squires circle must be sponsored by a council or assembly, but is run by and for young men, under the guidance of several Knights, who serve as counselors. Squires are to be leaders, thus, to the degree they are able, they are given the opportunity to lead, by running their own meetings, investing their own members, setting their circle's agenda and implementing their program of activities.
- Squires have fun. They meet new friends; they travel, play sports and socialize. Squires are serious-minded, too. Squires are involved in promoting vocations, marching in defense of unborn life, feeding the hungry, clothing the poor, supporting Special Olympics and promoting Catholic education, among countless other activities. Thus, the Squires circle is an athletic team, a youth group, a social club, a cultural and civic improvement association, a management training course, a civil rights organization and a spiritual development program all rolled into one.
Each April, in celebration of “Squires Month,” circles throughout the Order conduct open houses, membership drives, community service projects and social events that highlight the Squires as a leadership development program.
But celebrating the success of the Squires is not the only purpose of “Squires Month.” Circles are reminded to sponsor newsworthy activities and events to increase public awareness. Charitable efforts and other worthwhile circle programs will help draw attention to your circle during “Squires Month” and through the entire year. Use whatever means are at your disposal to provide the people in your community with an opportunity to learn about the Squires so they’ll have a better understanding of who the Squires are and what they do.
Possible activities for “Squires Month” include:
- Support a local cause in your community by volunteering or raising awareness and/or funds.
- Honor your father prior or parish priest by holding an investiture ceremony and dinner in his name. Be sure to recognize all they do for your Church community.
- Hold a living rosary for the innocent victims of abortion;
- Run a vocations awareness campaign for youth and young adults in your parish;
- Roll up your sleeves and organize a clean-up project for your church;
- Recognize altar servers with a special event;
- Visit a senior citizen center;
- Hold a concert, puppet show or similar event for children with disabilities;
- Sponsor a drug and alcohol abuse seminar and invite guest speakers;
- Run an open house for your members’ friends, schoolmates, CCD class members and other qualified prospects;
- Organize and serve a communion breakfast for prospects, family members, counselors, Knights, clergy members and civic leaders;
- Honor the Knights who act as counselors to your circle with a special appreciation dinner or activity.
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To order any of the materials on this page, please use a Requisition Form (#1) and submit the order to the Supreme Council Supply Department.
A Generation Without Role Models (#4558) – This flyer should be used for recruiting Knights to become circle counselors. It introduces the program, encourages the volunteer spirit and urges adults to have fun and share their faith with Catholic young men by being a Squires counselor.
You’re More Qualified (#4559) – This poster, which is used for recruiting Knights as counselors, includes a space to name a contact person that interested men can call. Post it in your council meeting hall and encourage Knights to get involved with the circle.
Use these materials to help your Squire circle grow.
Believe in Fun (#4556) – This flyer should be used for Squires recruitment. Give it to prospective members at school, church and religious education classes. The flyer highlights the different circle, service, spiritual and membership activities circles conduct.
Recruiting Guide (#4038) – This booklet is your guide to organizing and implementing a successful membership recruitment program in your circle. The suggestions presented here are proven winners, and you can choose from these ideas to find the best opportunities for success in your circle. With an easy-to-implement approach and well-outlined steps, this guide puts recruitment success within reach.
Monthly Highlight: Squire selected as a Page for State Senate
Curtis Maile, a Squire of St. Cecilia Circle 3545 in Stanwood, WA, was selected as a page for the Washington State Senate. He served in the position in January 2011. The political life seems to run in the family. His mother, Marcella Maile, served as a senate page and his grandfather, Jack Geraghty, was mayor of Spokane, WA.
Curtis is a Past Chief Squire of his circle and a past Marshal and Bursar of the Washington State Circle. In addition to that Curtis is on the track team at Stanwood High School, enjoys sailing and skiing and is working toward Eagle Scout status. The Squires Editor interview with this busy young man follows:
SE: What does a senate page do?
CM: A senate page runs documents and other errands for the senators. A page also acts as a messenger during session.
SE: How long will you serve in the position?
CM: A week.
SE: Were you named to the position or did you apply for it?
CM: I applied.
SE: What interests you about being a senate page and what do you hope to gain from the experience?
CM: I wanted to do this because it looked like fun and I wanted to meet some important people and see how the government works. I also like the Washington capitol campus. I hope to gain more people skills and of course some more friends from other parts of the state.
SE: What was the experience like?
CM: It was great and very different. It was very interesting and fun to be on my own for a week. Pages stay with a family but are pretty independent during the week so I enjoyed being able to make some more of my own decisions.
SE: Do you think your experience as a Squire will be helpful and, if so, how?
CM: I think it was helpful because being a Past State Marshal, Bursar and Chief Squire. I already knew something of how a meeting is run. It was interesting to see the same process we use in use at the government level.
SE: Obviously you are very active in the Columbian Squires. What is your opinion of the organization and why do you think it has value for young men such as yourself?
CM: I believe the Columbian Squires is a great organization and we all go a great job with helping the people around our community and in our churches. I believe it has values because you gain a lot of leadership skill along with a greater understanding of area in your community that need help.
SE: What would you tell a young man who is considering becoming a Squire?
CM: I would tell him, that the Columbian Squires is a great organization that will help you make friends, build life skills plus it looks great on your resume.
SE: How do you think your experience will help you later in life?
CM: Being a senate page gives me a better understanding of how our government works and how regular people can make a difference with our representatives.
SE: Finally, are you thinking about a career in politics, or do you have other aspirations?
CM: No I’m not, even though we have somewhat of a political legacy in my family with a few relatives involved in local and national politics. I am personally more of an engineering person. I plan on going to the University of Washington and taking physics classes and aerospace/mechanical engineering classes.