Squire Advancement Program

In Medieval times, a squire was a young man in training to become a knight. Squires learned through service, and, through their training, advanced toward the honorable goal of becoming a knight.

Like the squires of old, Columbian Squires, through the Squire Advancement Program, will advance through various levels of training. The program has the goal of recognizing and rewarding each Squire for acquiring the skills and attitudes of Catholic leadership as he moves towards becoming a Knight.

The program is structured with five levels of achievement, designed to guide a Squire through a process of learning and growth, while he masters certain activities and develops leadership skills. Each level requires a specific number of achievements in four categories: Home and Family; Squires and Knights; Community and Country; and Church.

Each level is described below.

Page

The first level in the Squire Advancement Program is Page. Historically, a page was in training to become a squire. He would be taught courtesy and chivalry by attending to his knight, the knight's lady and their guests, as well as taking care of household duties.

To reach this level a Squire must have been a member for at least two months and must achieve a basic knowledge of the Columbian Squires, the Knights of Columbus, his family, nation and faith.

Shield Bearer

Shield Bearer is the second level in the Advancement Program.

A Squire must have been a member for at least six months. He must expand on his knowledge of the Squires and of the Knights, be involved in his family, begin to get involved in his community, and become more advanced in the knowledge of his faith.

Swordsman

The third level of achievement sought by Squires is that of Swordsman.

A Squire must have been a member for at least nine months. He should be creative and helpful at home and should be gaining increasing confidence as a committee member, as a public speaker, as a member of the community, and as a member of his parish.

Lancer

The fourth level of achievement sought by Squires is that of Lancer. A Squire must have attended circle and committee meetings and activities for at least one year. He should be creative and helpful at home and should be gaining increasing confidence as a committee member, as a public speaker, as a member of the community, and as a member of his parish.

Squire of the Body of Christ

A knight’s senior squire was called the "squire of the body." This squire was responsible for the actions and supervision of the other squires. When his knight went into battle, this squire would accompany and aid him with his personal needs, including armor and armaments. A squire of the body would also tend to the wounds of an injured knight or assure that the knight's body would be buried if the knight was killed in action.

To become a Squire of the Body of Christ, the highest, most honorable level in the Squire Advancement Program, a Squire must complete at least 96 achievements and be an active Squire for at least two years.

A Squire must exhibit exceptional interest in his family and in the world around him. He should demonstrate exceptional leadership skills in his circle, in the community and in the Church. He must plan, organize, implement, and complete a major activity on behalf of his parish or another Church institution in the arch/diocese.

For a presentation on the Squire Advancement Program please click here.

Advancement Level: Page

Qualifications

Be a Squire in good standing for at least two months. Complete 24 "Page" achievements, minimum of four in each category. Achievements typed in italics are required for that category.

Certifications

After completing an achievement, ask your counselor to put his initials and the date on the line next to each achievement, to indicate when the achievement was certified as completed. Achievements marked with an asterisk (*) may be certified by a parent’s/guardian’s initials and the date. Your counselor will also enter the certification dates into his copy of your Squire Advancement Record. If an elective is completed, write the name or a description of the elective activity on the line provided.

Home and Family

*1 - Lead your family in a blessing before your evening meal for at least one week

*2 - Hold a family talent night

*3 - Have a game night with your family to play board, card, video or other games

*4 - Create a photo album or scrapbook of your family’s activities or achievements

*5 - Use a new recipe to cook a meal for your family

*6 - Celebrate a holiday with your family with decorations and a holiday meal

*7 - Go on an outdoor outing (picnic, camping trip, sledding, fishing, etc.) with your family

*8 - Go on a cultural outing (to a theater, museum, historical site, etc.) with your family

*9 - Elective - _________________________________________________

Squires and Knights

1 - Know the Squires motto and be able to describe the meaning of each symbol in the Squires emblem

2 - Name the founder of the Knights of Columbus and when, where and how it was started

3 - Name the founder of the Columbian Squires and when, where and how it was started

4 - Know the names of the officers and counselors of the circle and the officers of the state circle

5 - Serve on a circle committee and attend circle and committee meetings for at least two months

6 - Know how to make, amend or dispose of a motion, ask a point of information or adjourn a meeting using Parliamentary Procedure

7 - Attend an activity sponsored by your sponsoring council or assembly

8 - Recruit a friend as a new Squire

9 - Elective - ___________________________________________________

Community and Country

1 - U.S. Squires, recite the Pledge of Allegiance and know about its origin, including the words "under God"

2 - Learn the history and words of your National Anthem, how it was chosen as the national anthem, and sing it with your circle

3 - Learn and demonstrate the proper way to display, hoist, lower and hold the flag

4 - Name the major geographic features in your town, such as lakes, rivers, hills, parks, etc.

5 - Name the symbols of your nation and state/province, such as the official bird and flower

6 - Name and know the purpose of the patriotic holidays specific to your country, such as Memorial Day,Flag Day, Independence Day and Veterans Day in the U.S.

7 - Describe the type of local government in your town (mayor/council, selectman/council, Board of Education,town meeting, county commissioners, city manager, etc.)

8 - Know the names of the local head of government, the governor/premier of your state/province and the president/prime minister of your country

9 - Elective -___________________________________________________

Church

*1 - Recite the "Ten Commandments"

*2 - Recite the "Seven Sacraments" and explain the purpose of each

*3 - Recite the "Precepts of the Church"

*4 - Recite from memory the "Our Father" "Hail Mary" "Glory Be" "Apostle’s Creed" and the "Act of Contrition"

*5 - Receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation

*6 - Attend Mass at least weekly

*7 - Set aside five minutes each day for personal prayer

*8 - Recite the names of the Pope, your bishop and your pastor

*9 - Elective - _________________________________________________


Advancement Level: Lancer

Qualifications

Attendance at circle and committee meetings and activities for at least one year, accomplish 16 Lancer achievements, four in each category. Achievements typed in italics are required for that category.

Certifications

After completing an achievement, ask your counselor to put his initials and the date on the line next to each achievement, to indicate when the achievement was certified as completed. Achievements marked with an asterisk (*) may be certified by a parent’s/guardian’s initials and the date. Your counselor will also enter the certification dates into his copy of your Squire Advancement Record. If an elective is completed, write the name or a description of the elective activity on the line provided.

Home and Family

*1 - Video or write a family history by interviewing your siblings, parents and grandparents

*2 - With your parents’ permission, redecorate your bedroom or another room in your home

*3 - With your parents, review or create a budget for your family, and a budget for yourself based on your allowance or wages and expenses

*4 - Use a computer program, or graph paper, to design what your future home, an addition on your current home, or some other building or architectural design, might look like

*5 - Write a short story, play, or poem, or the lyrics for song

*6 - Pray the Rosary with your parents daily for one week, for seven Sundays, or on seven other occasions

*7 - With a friend or two, perhaps at dinner, bring your parents up to date on the current youth scene, describing the newest in clothing fashions, fads, slang, music/CDs, dances, movies/videos/DVDs, computer games, television shows, sports and dating trends

*8 - Use a computer or paper to record the weather conditions at your house for one month

*9 - Elective - __________________________________________________

Squires and Knights

1 - Give a persuasive one minute speech at a circle meeting about an activity you would like the circle to consider holding

2 - Recruit at least one new member

3 - Send a Mass card, sympathy note, flowers or other item to a fellow Squire or counselor upon the occasion of the death of a member of his family

4 - Join the Father McGivney Guild and pray for his canonization

5 - Depending on your eligibility, participate in one of the following K of C programs - Free Throw, Soccer Challenge, the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Poster Contest or the Catholic Citizenship Essay Contest

6 - Assist your sponsoring council in fund raising for people who are intellectually challenged

7 - Attend or participate in a sporting event sponsored by your circle or sponsoring council/assembly

8 - Attend a religious or civic event in which a Fourth Degree Honor Guard participates

9 - Elective - ___________________________________________________

Community and Country

*1 - Attend a public meeting of a local government agency

*2 - Tour your town or city hall and meet the mayor, town manager, county commissioner or other public official

*3 - Visit an historical site, battlefield or museum concerning the history of your country

*4 - Visit and tour an agency that helps people with health issues such as AIDS or cancer or social problems such as alcoholism and drug abuse

*5 - Demonstrate expertise in a sport by being a member of a team, league, club or course in which you earn a certificate, grade, letter, medal, trophy or other recognition

*6 - Visit the Knights of Columbus Museum and St. Mary’s Church in New Haven, CT

7 - Participate in a circle service program in which you are responsible for leading or organizing a portion of that program

8 - Participate in a circle service program at a soup kitchen or homeless shelter

9 - Elective - ___________________________________________________

Church

*1 - Receive the Sacrament of Confirmation

*2 - Spend a holy hour of prayer before the Blessed Sacrament

*3 - Be commissioned as a Eucharistic Minister, if allowed by the diocese and pastor

*4 - Serve on a committee in your parish

*5 - Memorize and recite the 20 mysteries of the four categories of the Rosary

6 - Give a 3-5 minute speech to your circle on the Catholic Church’s position on one of the following issues: war, the death penalty, abortion, euthanasia, bioethics, poverty, hunger, homelessness, health care, worker rights

7 - Show support for a seminarian by a visit or sending him a personal letter, card or care package, or by participating in a circle sponsored fund raiser to raise funds for an RSVP scholarship

8 - Participate in a recitation or reenactment of the Stations of the Cross with your circle or in your parish or school

9 - Elective - ___________________________________________________


Advancement Level: Shield Bearer

Qualifications

Regular attendance at circle and committee meetings and activities for at least 6 months. Complete 24 Shield Bearer achievements, with a minimum of four in each category. Achievements typed in italics are required for that category.

Certifications

After completing an achievement, ask your counselor to put his initials and the date on the line next to each achievement, to indicate when the achievement was certified as completed. Achievements marked with an asterisk (*) may be certified by a parent’s/guardian’s initials and the date. Your counselor will also enter the certification dates into his copy of your Squire Advancement Record. If an elective is completed, write the name or a description of the elective activity on the line provided.

Home and Family

*1 - Research and create a "family tree" of your family and relatives

*2 - Put together a jigsaw puzzle or create a craft or artistic item with your family

*3 - Hold a family exercise session

*4 - Attend a sporting event with your family

*5 - Plant a vegetable or flower garden or care for a selection of indoor plants

*6 - Attend a play, concert or movie or watch a video/DVD at home with your family

*7 - Make and decorate a cake, pie or other desert for a birthday or other special occasion

*8 - Go on an outing or other activity with your grandparents

*9 - Elective - __________________________________________________

Squires and Knights

1 - Know and be able to use the basic motions of Parliamentary Procedure listed in the Squires Advancement Program "Fact Book" or in the "Circle Operations and Executive Leadership Guide" (#498)

2 - At a circle meeting give a one minute speech about yourself and your family

3 - Achieve "Very Important Proposer" (VIP) status by recruiting at least one new member

4 - As a Squire, attend a Squires circle investiture ceremony

5 - Be able to recite a brief biography of Father McGivney, founder of the Knights of Columbus

6 - Be able to recite a brief biography of Brother Barnabas, founder of the Columbian Squires

7 - Know the qualifications for the Corps d’Elite Award and the Brother Barnabas Award

8 - Know the names of the grand knight/faithful navigator of your sponsoring unit, the district deputy, your state or territorial deputy and the supreme knight

9 - Elective - ___________________________________________________

Community and Country

*1 - Talk to a veteran about his/her experience in the military

*2 - Write a letter about a local issue to a government official or newspaper editor

*3 - Attend a parade with your family or circle

4 - Participate in the posting of the colors ceremony

5 - If in a U.S. circle, lead the "Pledge of Allegiance" at a circle meeting

6 - Listen to a talk to your circle about public safety by a local fire or police official such as the fire chief or chief of police, or other emergency preparedness officer, or take a tour with them of their office and facility

7 - Attend a local, county, state/province or national government meeting

8 - Learn about and tell your circle about a historical event that occurred in or near your town

9 - Elective - ___________________________________________________

Church

*1 - Rosary devotion: (a) - recite the four categories of Mysteries of the Rosary; (b) - pray the Rosary alone

*2 - Know the Holy Days of Obligation, the requirements to receive communion and the rules for fasting and abstinence during Lent

*3 - Learn about and describe the life of the patron saint after whom you were named

*4 - Say a prayer of intercession to Father McGivney and pray for his canonization

5 - Take a guided tour of the rectory/parish office to learn what is done there

6 - Take a guided tour of the church, including the altar, tabernacle, sacristy and pulpit

7 - Attend a meeting in which a guest speaker talks about some aspect of Church history

8 - Attend Mass with your Squires circle

9 - Elective - ____________________________________________


Advancement Level: Swordsman

Qualifications

Attendance at circle and committee meetings and activities for at least nine months, complete 16 Swordsman achievements, four in each category. Achievements typed in  italics are required for that category.

Certifications

After completing an achievement, ask your counselor to put his initials and the date on the line next to each achievement, to indicate when the achievement was certified as completed. Achievements marked with an asterisk (*) may be certified by a parent’s/guardian’s initials and the date. Your counselor will also enter the certification dates into his copy of your Squire Advancement Record. If an elective is completed, write the name or a description of the elective activity on the line provided.

Home and Family

*1 - Plan and hold an international night with your family, featuring food, music, entertainment and dress from a foreign country

*2 - Keep a scrapbook of your achievements and important papers and awards

*3 - Set up a bird feeder in your yard, identify, list, and report to your circle the number and types of birds that visit over a two week period

*4 - With a parent or guardian, plan your family’s meals for a week, create a grocery list and do the grocery shopping while staying within a preset food budget

*5 - Organize a family charity project, such as donating food to a local soup kitchen

*6 - Plan and carry out a home emergency plan, including escape routes, procedures, and obtaining emergency supplies and equipment for different types of possible emergencies

*7 - Help a parent/guardian/grandparent/other relative or neighbor with a home fix-it project, such as painting, repairing or constructing something around the house

*8 - Create a painting/drawing, sculpture, photo exhibit or other type of art or craft project for a 1-3 minute presentation at a circle meeting

*9 - Elective - __________________________________________________

Squires and Knights

1 - Give a 1-3 minute speech to your circle about your favorite hobby or sport

2 - Serve on a circle activity committee and help organize and hold at least two activities sponsored by the committee

3 - Recruit at least one new member

4 - Hear a member of the Fourth Degree discuss its history, purpose and membership requirements

5 - Participate in a joint circle/sponsoring council or circle/sponsoring assembly activity

6 - Listen to a K of C officer discuss why he is a Knight and what he does in the Order

7 - Serve as a member of the circle’s ceremonial team and participate in at least one investiture

8 - Recite the names of the officers of your sponsoring K of C unit, of the state circle, the state council and of the Supreme Council officers

9 - Elective - ___________________________________________________

Community and Country

*1 - Visit and tour a facility for the poor or homeless, such as a soup kitchen

*2 - Visit and tour a pregnancy help center

*3 - Assist a person who is elderly, ill, injured or who has a disability with some chores around his or her house

*4 - Participate in a program, such as Special Olympics, that supports people who are intellectually, emotionally or physically challenged

5 - Attend a circle meeting at which your state senator, state representative or other elected or appointed public official, or some other state/provincial or community leader, is invited to speak

6 - Plan and carry out a project to clean up, recycle items, or otherwise improve the environment around your house, neighborhood or town

7 - Join in a walkathon, car wash or other fund raising project to raise money for a worthy cause

8 - March in a local parade with your circle

9 - Elective - ___________________________________________________

Church

*1 - Describe the three types of vocations – married, single, clerical

*2 - Describe and distinguish between the role of priests, deacons, brothers, nuns, and lay ministers

*3 - Lead a personal prayer at a Squires meeting

4 - Lead a decade of the rosary in a group

5 - Be trained and serve as an altar server

6 - Attend a circle meal with the pastor and/or father prior at the rectory

7 - Participate in a circle sponsored Mass in which you participate in the choir, as an usher, altar server, lector, Eucharistic Minister or in some other active role

8 - Attend Mass at the arch/diocesan cathedral and tour the chancery office to learn the duties of the various arch/diocesan offices and ministries - meet the cardinal/arch/bishop, if available, to discuss the hierarchy of the Catholic Church

9 - Elective - ___________________________________________________


Advancement Level: Squire of the Body of Christ

Qualifications

Be a Squire for at least two years, accomplish 16 Squire of the Body of Christ achievements, four in each category. Achievements typed in italics are required for that category.

Certifications

After completing an achievement, ask your counselor to put his initials and the date on the line next to each achievement, to indicate when the achievement was certified as completed. Achievements marked with an asterisk (*) may be certified by a parent’s/guardian’s initials and the date. Your counselor will also enter the certification dates into his copy of your Squire Advancement Record. If an elective is completed, write the name or a description of the elective activity on the line provided.

Home and Family

*1 - Read and review the section of the Catechism of the Catholic Church on the requirements and rules for the Sacrament of Marriage and discuss them with your parents, pastor, father prior or counselor

*2 - Support, participate in or organize a pro-life program concerning the unborn, the disabled or the elderly

*3 - Give support to a child or family through an aid agency

*4 - Read a chapter in each of six books of the Bible and discuss each in a half hour Bible Study with a parent, or a circle or parish sponsored Bible study

*5 - Use a home telescope or a telescope at a nearby college or observatory to view the moon, planets and stars

*6 - Take a day or overnight trip with your family to a Catholic shrine

*7 - Help your family organize and hold a family reunion

*8 - Design and create a homepage for a website

*9 - Elective - _________________________________________________

*10 - Elective - ________________________________________________

Squires and Knights

1 - Recruit at least one new Squire

2 - Attend a meeting of another Squires circle

3 - Serve on a ceremonial team investing new members into another Squires circle

4 - Assist in the institution or reinstitution of a new Squires circle

5 - Serve as a mentor to a Squire to help him achieve the rank of "Page" or "Shield Bearer"

6 - Attend your jurisdiction’s state circle convention, if one is held in your jurisdiction

7 - Be elected or appointed to a state or local circle officer position, committee chairmanship, or ceremonial team member

8 - If you are 18 years old, become a Knight of Columbus

9 - Elective - __________________________________________________

10 - Elective - _________________________________________________

Community and Country

*1 - Travel to your state or provincial capital and visit key government offices, such as the executive and judicial branches, and, if in session, listen to the debate and parliamentary procedure and observe the voting of the legislature

*2 - Attend a public hearing to speak for or against an issue being considered by a council, board, commission or other government agency

*3 - Volunteer in a political campaign to work on behalf of a candidate you support

*4 - Visit and tour a hospital for veterans, a military service academy or a military base that is open to visitors

*5 - Work on a project with Habitat for Humanity, a Catholic work camp, Catholic Charities, Catholic Relief Services or a similar construction, relief or development organization

*6 - If you are 18 years old, register as a voter

7 - Invite your Congressman or Member of Parliament to speak to your circle or visit his/her office

8 - Ask your town councilman/county commissioner or other local official, or your state senator or state representative, or your Congressman or Member of Parliament, to introduce legislation recommended by your circle

9 - Elective - __________________________________________________

Church

1 - With your counselor’s approval, organize a service project to benefit your parish or another Catholic institution in your arch/diocese

*2 - Attend a diocesan or national Catholic youth conference, or World Youth Day with the Pope

*3 - Say a novena for a special intention

*4 - Attend a day-long or overnight spiritual retreat with your circle, parish or school

*5 - Serve as a religious education instructor or as an assistant to one

*6 - Read a book or watch a movie/video/DVD about the Church’s Ecumenical Councils or other events in the history of the Catholic Church and discuss it with a counselor/parent

7 - Read a papal encyclical and give a 3-5 minute talk to the circle about it

8 - Christian Faith Study – study the basics of another Christian denomination or other religion and use a 3-5 minute talk to describe to the circle any similarities and differences in beliefs and practices as compared to the Catholic Church

9 - Elective - _________________________________________________

10 - Elective - ________________________________________________