Knights of Columbus - 4th Degree - West Chester, Pennsylvania, USA
Chester County Assembly # 1873
Activities And Events
Activities And Events
Annual Dinner Dance
In 1981, the Assembly established the Annual Dinner Dance. This affair has grown throughout the years and has become an enjoyable social occasion for all Sir Knights and their Lady's. The first Dinner Dance was to commemorate the charter of the new Chester County Assembly. Msgr. Schuyler Council 1333, hosted the affair at their home. Today, the Dinner Dance honors the Past Faithful Navigator from the previous year. In addition, the presentation of the "Sir Knight of the Year Award" is given to a worthy Sir Knight who has dedicated his work towards the good of the Order.
Other Annual Events
In accordance with our by-laws, the assembly holds an Annual Anniversary Mass and Communion Breakfast for all Sir Knights and families of the assembly. This is an opportunity to share our faith together and experience fraternity as well as socialize with our brother knights and their families.
Once a year in November, the Assembly remembers those Sir Knights who have died and gone to their eternal reward. The Annual Memorial Mass is our way of remembering those who have contributed to the success of this assembly. In July, the assembly holds another of our annual events and that is the Family Picnic. This is another social event that our Sir Knights and their families look forward to each year.
Ceremony of the Sword
Each year the new Sir Knights of the Assembly are invited to witness the Ceremony of the Sword. On October 3, 1983 (the late) Sir Knight Rev. James E. Warne, O.S.A., conducted the first presentation of the sword ceremony to the Chester County Assembly. The following year (1984), SK John J. Cruice, PFN of Cardinal Dougherty Assembly was invited to conduct the sword ceremony. Sir Knight William M. Dunleavy, PFN from the Chester County Assembly was appointed to prepare and formulate a ceremony of the sword presentation for our assembly. Sir Knight Dunleavy has conducted this prestigious function since 1985. For new Sir Knights as well as current Sir Knights who have not witnessed this ceremony, you will enjoy its beauty and dignity.
The Assembly supports new candidates for the Priesthood and the Religious Life, by participating in the orders Reftind Support Vocation Program (RSVP). The Assembly has sponsored a summer picnic for the seminarians from the Archdiocese of Philadelphia since 1997. This activity expresses our support and solidarity to our future priests. The assembly received a letter from Vice-Supreme Master, Francis M. Feeley dated 6/30/99 expressing hisinterest in our seminarian picnic. He is the Vocations Chairman for the Maryland State Council and was looking for new ideas to support their state program.
The Assembly periodically distributes Vocation Prayer Cards, How to Say theRosary and How to Receive the Sacrament of Penance Cards to area Catholicgrade and high schools. In addition, the assembly's interest in strong and faithful members has helped to provide a framework of Catholic layman to serve our churches in various lay ministries.
During the past eighteen years, the assembly has continued our support and commitment against the threat to Unborn Human Life. Since that most tragic decision by the U.S. Supreme Court some 26years ago (Roe vs. Wade), the assembly has participated in the annual Respect Life observances at the Basilica in Philadelphia. The Assembly also continues to support the Chester County community Respect Life Programs each year, by participating in various March for Life and Life Chains held through out the County. Our members also make annual trips to Washington, D.C to protest the Supreme Court decision.
The Assembly authorized the establishment of the Cristoforo Fund to provide a student from the assembly area, the opportunity to attend the Freedoms Foundations, Patriotic Leadership Program in Valley Forge, PA.. Ms. Angela Cristoforo requested that this fund that was established by her late father, Sir Knight Joseph Cristoforo, be maintained in his memory. We are grateful to the family of Sir Knight Joseph Cristoforo for their continued financial support of this program.
Each year the Chester County Assembly projects the image of Columbianism by participation and involvement with local church and community activities. Our members participate and sponsor numerous religious, charitable, fraternal, civic, and patriotic projects. Following is a partial list of such activities:
Flag Day Celebration
Fourth of July Parades
Honor Guard for the Cardinal
Honor Guard for State K of C Conventions
New Church and Parish Hall Dedications
Distributing patriotic materials to Catholic Schools
Conformations - Bishop escort
Forty Hour closing devotions
Vietnam Memorial Dedication
Honor Guard for Fourth Degree Exemplification
Religious ceremonies, jubilees and anniversaries
Memorial services for departed brothers
Recognizing news citizens to our country
Keep Christ in Christmas poster contest
Since the very beginning of the assembly, we have kept a focus on Patriotism, the principle of the Fourth Degree. The Assembly has participated in Flag Day, Veterans Day, and Memorial Day ceremonies, as well as, dedications and support of various war memorials. Never losing sight that the freedoms we enjoy, were gained by the sacrifice of courageous men and women who have and will continue to serve this great nation.
As the assembly has grown, so have our patriotic activities. The late Sir Knight Joseph Cristoforo, established a fund that still is in existence today, that sends a student to the Freedom Foundation Patriotic Leadership Program every year. During the fraternal year of 1994/1995, the assembly established the Annual Veterans Outing. The Assembly provides lunch and entertainment to veterans from the Coatesville Veterans Hospital at the Msgr. Schuyler Council Home. This outing is an annual event.
Sunday October 12,1997, Columbus Day Mass at St. Peter Church in Honey Brook, Faithful Navigator, Sir Knight Jata S. Ghosh read before a standing room only church, the Proclamation for Columbus Day Celebration in West Chester, signed by the Mayor of West Chester. This proclamation recognized the work of the Knights of Columbus and the Chester County Assembly for 16 years of service to the Chester County area. This proclamation became a deeded gift to the Knights of Columbus in New Haven and is on display in their Columbus Museum.
In 1997/1998, Faithful Navigator, Sir Knight Jata S. Ghosh developed a patriotic program called "Operation Old Glory". The Assembly provided 13 area Catholic Grade Schools with patriotic material from Supreme Headquarters: U. S. Flag posters, History of the Flag, "Hello, Remember me?", How "Under God" was added to our pledge and Rules for displaying The Flag. This way the assembly preserves and promotes the rich heritage of our country and fosters the spirit of patriotism to the youth in our Catholic Schools.
In 1998/1999, the assembly embarked on a another patriotic program, "Operation Proud to be an American". Faithful Captain, Sir Knight Robert F. Smith developed the idea to recognize newly naturalized citizens of this country. Each new citizen receives a certificate from the assembly, recognizing them as citizens entitled to all the rights and privileges guaranteed under the Constitution of the United States of America. In addition, each citizen receives a copy of the History of the U. S. Flag and How Under God was added to the Pledge of Allegiance. The ceremony is conducted several times a year in the Chester County Court of Common Pleas. In the first year of this program, the assembly honored 169 new citizens to our country.
The Assembly received a letter from Supreme Master, Charles H. Foos dated 11/10/98. He noted that Operation Proud to be an American, 'is a very significant and impressive practice, as well as, a strong outward sign of patriotism and respect that generates a positive image for the Order.' He further stated that, 'He intended to make this program an agenda item to be discussed with all Vice Supreme Masters, so that more assemblies can get involved in this type of patriotic program'.
The Chester County Assembly has various committees that are active during the year. We invite all members, especially new members, to take an active role in one or more committees or develop new programs that promote the Order and the Assembly. Below is the listing of those committees.
Catholic School/Youth Activities
Communication/Public Relation Activities