Fourth Degree

Be All That You Can Be.....                                NEXT EXEMPLIFICATION

.....By Joining the Fourth Degree                      Star Assembly Form        Supreme 4th degree Forms

                                                                             Form 4 Instructions        Civic Award



April 2020 

Brother Knights,

As you know, we have a severe shortage of active duty Catholic Priests serving our brave military men, women and their families worldwide. Through the continued generosity of our members, we are able to assist the Archdiocese of Military Services, USA, recruit young men desiring to become Military Chaplains. 

It gives me great pleasure to announce that Supreme Master, Dennis J. Stoddard advises we have reached our $2MIL goal for the Military Chaplains Scholarship Program. Thanks to the hard work of our Fourth Degree members we have officially received donations totaling $2,000,618.51. Even though we have reached our goal early, we will continue to support our military seminarians with our donations. If your assembly wants to donate to the Military Chaplains Scholarship Program, checks should be made payable to:

Knights of Columbus Charities

On Memo line write "Military Chaplains"    

Mail the check to:

Attn: Maryann Ludington, Charities

One Columbus Plaza

New Haven, Ct 06510

Please continue to support this important and necessary program. 

It’s not too soon to start thinking of submissions for the Civic Award and the To Be A Patriot Award. Please note the application form for the To Be A Patriot award, TBP-2, must be completed, printed out and MAILED to me by April 30, 2020. No submission postmarked after April 30, 2020 will be accepted, nor will faxed or emailed submissions be accepted. Information about both awards are available at

Due to the COVID-19 virus the May 9th exemplification in Muncie has been postponed until November 7, 2020

Stay safe, and pray for all our policemen and women, firefighters, EMTs, doctors, nurses, and all those on the front lines of COVID-19. May God protect them and their families.  

Stand for the flag and kneel for the Cross.


Rick Santangelo                                                                                                             

Master, Indiana District

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     "Our principles are just words if we do not live them out." Carl A. Anderson, Supreme Knight


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The Fourth Degree, also known as the Patriotic Degree, is the highest degree of the Knights of Columbus, and it exists to foster the spirit of patriotism, enlightened by our Catholic Faith. It is a rewarding way to combine our Catholic heritage with our love of our country. 

The Fourth Degree is patriotism in action, i.e. Honor guards at Mass for confirmations, funerals, and memorial services, in addition to Color Corps representation at federal, state and local ceremonies, such as parades and wreath-laying ceremonies. The Fourth Degree is a visible reminder of our service to the community.

History of the Fourth Degree

In 1886, four years after our Order was established, Supreme Knight James T. Mullen proposed the patriotic degree and the Supreme Board of Directors approved the formation of the Fourth Degree in 1899. Along with the addition of “patriotism” to the Knights’ principles in 1900 came the first exemplification of the Fourth Degree which was held on February 22, 1900 in New York City with a class of 1,100 Knights. 

The Fourth Degree is currently organized into 21 geographical units known as provinces. Our province consists of the states of Indiana, Kentucky, and West Virginia, and is referred to as the Father Edward F. Sorin, C.S.C. Province. The executive officer of the Fourth Degree is the Supreme Master.

The executive officer of the province is the Vice Supreme Master.  A province is further divided into districts, which normally (with few exceptions) coincide with state boundaries.  Each district is presided over by an executive officer, the Master. Currently, there are 122 districts.

The Fourth Degree is the Patriotic Degree of the Knights of Columbus, and it comprises over 17% of the membership of the Order.  The distinctive regalia of Sir Knights make them the most visible arm of the Order to the public.

Purpose of the Fourth Degree

  • To promote and strengthen the patriotic spirit of the civic community
  • To educate its members, and others, both in the teachings of Holy Mother Church, and the history of our nation
  • To promote by example the highest type of citizenship so necessary for the preservation and perpetuation of Republican form of government and its democratic institutions
  • To oppose dissemination and spread of doctrine dangerous to our form of government, and to the Divine law of faith and morality
  • To support by word and deed, the duly constituted authorities of local, state, and national government, and to recognize excellence in public life

The Fourth Degree, both collectively and individually, supports those religious, civic, and charitable causes which are designed to implement one or more of these five objectives.


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