WHO ARE THE 4TH DEGREE?
They are the Knights on Main Street, the men you probably envision when someone says Knights of Columbus to you. They’re present in their distinct regalia at civic and Church events, acting as honor guards and color corps, or standing in respect at the funerals of members or during adoration of the Eucharist. But there is more to being a Fourth Degree member of the Knights of Columbus than a uniform. They are the men who have chosen to embrace the Order’s fourth principle of patriotism, the men who lead the efforts to reach out to veterans and active military and to embody the fact that one can be a faithful Catholic and also be a faithful citizen.When the Knights of Columbus was founded in 1882, three principles united its members: charity, unity and fraternity. At that time people feared that members of the Catholic faith owed their entire allegiance to the Church and could not be trusted as citizens of their country. Patriotism was added to the Order’s principles in 1900, based on the idea that Knights are loyal to both God and country. Members who wish to live out patriotism together can join “the Fourth Degree.” Members of this degree have the special honor of holding the title “Sir Knight,” participating in color and honor guards and organizing programs that promote Catholic citizenship.
From Supreme Website-Andrew Butler
Knights of Columbus 8960, 2320 Hatfield Rd, Pearland, Texas 77581, United States
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Americans come together on July 4th to celebrate the nation’s birthday and Independence Day. The story of America’s independence is fascinating.
In the 1700s, America wasn’t a nation of ‘united states.’ Instead, there were 13
colonies with distinct personalities and an ornery predisposition to territorialism. From 1763 to 1773, Britain’s King George III increasingly placed pressure on the colonies as he and the British Parliament enacted a succession of taxes and laws on them. Excessive taxes on British luxury goods like tea and sugar were designed to benefit the British crown without any regard for the hardships of the colonists. By 1764, the phrase “Taxation without representation was tyranny” spread throughout the colonies as the rallying cry of outrage.
The more the colonists rebelled, the more King George doubled down with force. The Quartering Act of 1765 allowed British soldiers the right to enter your home. But the Stamp Act of 1765 became the straw that broke the colonists’ backs. Passed by Parliament in March, this act taxed any piece of printed paper, including newspapers, legal documents, ships’ papers. As the colonial grumbling got louder and bolder, in the fall of 1768, British ships arrived in Boston Harbor as a show of force. Tensions boiled over on March 5, 1770, in Boston Harbor during a street fight between a group of colonists and British soldiers. The soldiers fired shots that killed 47-year-old Crispus Attucks, the first American and black man to die along with three other colonists in the Boston Massacre.
In 1773, the Boston Tea Party erupted when colonists disguised as Mohican Indians raided a British ship, dumping all the tea overboard to avoid paying the taxes. Continued pressure led to resistance and the start of the Revolutionary War in the towns of Lexington and Concord when a militia of patriots battled British soldiers on April 19,
1775. Conditions were ripe for American independence.
In 1776 a few people in Philadelphia drafted a document proclaiming their liberation from Britain, reaffirming their rights as free men. Finally, the Declaration was fully ratified on July 4, 1776. Thomas Jefferson, was tasked with pulling the document together, envisioned a nation where “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of happiness” crystallized the very meaning of being an American.
On this day of our nations Independence as patriots, let us stand for our country and pray for its welfare and leadership. God Bless America.
Fr. Sibi Kunninu, MS Faithful Friar.
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