Family Week – Action Steps

Sponsor Religious Programs

Make sure that your celebration of the family includes a variety of activities that highlight the Order’s mission.

  • Sponsor a weekend family retreat.

  • Conduct an outdoor rosary or Mass before a family picnic.

  • Distribute Father McGivney prayer cards (#2617) and The Life and Legacy of Father McGivney booklet (#2045 — available in limited quantities of 50), available in English, French and Spanish, at your events.

  • Sponsor a family Mass with children participating as altar servers and family members serving as ushers and lectors.

  • Hold a renewal of marriage vows ceremony and give participating couples an “A Covenant Renewed” certificate (#2745 — available for 25 cents each).

  • Hold a memorial Mass for deceased members of the council family. This would be an especially fitting memorial since August 14 is the anniversary of the Father McGivney’s death.

  • Invite local seminarians or novices, especially those who are receiving support from your council under the Refund Support Vocations Program, to your Family Week activities.

Promote Volunteerism and Togetherness

Point out the many benefits of volunteering as a family. Volunteering brings members together for quality time while they make a difference and create positive memories. Helping those who are less fortunate can also add perspective to their lives. When volunteering with young children remember to keep the activity as fun as possible so they’ll want to do it again. Also, take into consideration children’s physical abilities and attention span. Let the children be involved in deciding what will be done, and discuss afterwards what they have learned.

  • Encourage family, council or parish visits to convalescent homes.

  • Clean up litter in a park, or help your parish with outdoor maintenance.

  • Assist pregnancy resource centers by collecting baby items and donations.

  • Repair, paint or clean the home of a needy person or family, or an elderly person or couple.

  • Serve a meal at a hospice or community soup kitchen.

  • Collect gifts or necessities to deliver to a senior citizen center or a veterans’ facility.

  • Hold a drive to collect used children's books for local schools or soup kitchens for distribution to needy children.

Include Fun Activities

  • Sponsor a family picnic featuring a cookout, sack race, egg toss, water-balloon toss, three-legged race, obstacle course, face painting and similar activities.

  • Hold a banquet to honor “Family of the Month and/or Year” recipients. Present the recipients with Family of the Month certificates (#1843) or Family of the Year certificates (#1843A), both available in English, French and Spanish at a cost of 25 cents each.

  • Hold a family night at your council’s meeting place to allow families to play games and socialize.

  • Host family sports competitions (tug of war, volleyball, horseshoes, bocce, darts, softball, etc.).

  • Hold a family social with music, dancing and a sing-a-long for younger children.

Hold Membership and Fraternal Activities

  • Start off your Family Week celebrations by bringing new members into the Order through a First Degree exemplification held on the anniversary of Father McGivney’s birth on August 12. Hold a recruitment campaign before that date to obtain candidates for the degree and keep your council’s membership recruitment efforts going strong during the summer.

  • Sponsor an open house at your council’s meeting place. Distribute recruitment materials including the youth recruitment flyer (#4496), the “Knights of Columbus Overview” flyer (#4547), the “Faith-based” flyer (#4497), and the “Member/Spouse Fraternal Benefit”  flyer (#2773).

  • Distribute the “Community Service” recruitment flyer (#4553) and the “Families Come First” flyer (#4552) at all Family Week events.

  • Attract prospects to the council by getting their children involved in council activities. If your council has a picnic, sports tournament, camping trip, etc., invite prospects and their children. While the youngsters are having fun, talk to their dads about joining.

  • Tell prospects about what the Knights of Columbus means to you and your family. Explain to them what makes you feel good about the Order and what it is about being a Knight that gives you and your family satisfaction.

  • Conduct a membership drive aimed specifically at recruiting the family members (fathers, brothers, uncles, cousins, sons, grandfathers) of current members.

  • Show the productions The Life and Legacy of Father McGivney, Vocation to Marriage (included on the Everyone Has a Vocation. What's Yours? DVD) and other promotional titles available from the Supreme Council’s Department of Fraternal Services.

  • Recognize members and their families for individual achievement and support for council activities.

Spread the Word About Your Events

Let the community know that your council is celebrating Knights of Columbus Family Week by issuing press releases to local media on the activities you have planned. Consult the Getting Your Message Across — Public Relations and Publicity Guide (#2235) for detailed information on preparing and distributing press releases.

Be sure to type the press release, preferably double spaced. The release should include all information pertinent to the event (who, what, when, where and why) as well as the name, e-mail, and phone number for a person to contact for additional information. Send releases (hand-delivered and/or e-mailed) to local and diocesan newspapers; your parish bulletin; radio, and television and cable access stations; and other sources that may be interested in your story. Make sure the media receives the releases well in advance of the event so they will have adequate time to promote it. Also, contact local cable-access stations about the possibility of airing the 24-minute production The Life and Legacy of Father McGivney and the 11-minute Experience of a Lifetime video or other promotional videos during Family Week.

Sample Family Week Proclamation

Use this sample Knights of Columbus Family Week Proclamation as a guide to draft your own proclamation and submit it to your public officials for their signatures, and ask them to issue this proclamation announcing Knights of Columbus Family Week.