Definition of a Practical Catholic came up in a discussion at our officers’ meeting and a term mentioned in our Exemplifications. The definition from the Supreme Website is as follows: “A Practical Catholic accepts the teaching authority of the Catholic Church on matters of faith and morals, aspires to live in accord with the precepts of the Catholic Church, and is in good standing in the Catholic Church”. A Summary of the “Definition of a Practical Catholic” was written by a Supreme Chaplain and Bishop of Alexandria C.P. Greco and I thought these were nicely defined.
Definition of a Practical Catholic as written by Bishop C. P. Greco of Alexandria.
The sole condition for membership in the Order of Knights of Columbus is that an applicant or member be a practical or practicing Catholic. In other words, he must be a Catholic in good standing in the Catholic Church. The main component elements of this requirement may be briefly described as follows:
- To reflect Christ in the modem world, in all circumstances and places of living. That is, to order one’s life according to the teachings of Christ and to follow the pattern of His example.
- To show love and loyalty for the Church, and to defend the Church, her teachings and her representatives in all attacks against them. (Helping one’s bishop and parish priest is the primary way to do this).
- To accept and respect the Church’s authority (vested in the Supreme Pontiff and the Hierarchy united with him), to teach and govern the faithful. This implies the acceptance of all the Church’s teachings as proposed for our belief by the Teaching Authority of the Church.
- To assist faithfully and intelligently at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation. (Assistance at Daily Mass is highly commendable).
- To receive Holy Communion during the Easter Time, according to precept, but frequently, at least monthly, as a good and wholesome spiritual practice.
- To confess one’s sins at least once a year, and even frequently, as a good spiritual practice, but not by command, unless the confession is needed in order to free one’s conscience of grave sin.
- To fast and abstain on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday by the obligation imposed by the Church; to abstain on the other Fridays of Lent also by the obligation imposed by the Church.
(It is strongly recommended to abstain from meat on all the other Fridays of the year, fast during Lent and perform other penitential works because of our love for Christ Who died for us on a Friday and Who fasted 40 days and nights, and because of the necessity of doing penance for our sins).
- To give financial and moral support to the Church for her needs and programs: promoting her spiritual and sociological missions, aiding the poor and underprivileged, espousing and advancing the just cause of minority groups, etc.
- To pray frequently. (It is very helpful to know and to recite the Lord’s Prayer, the Hail Mary, the Acts of Faith, Hope, Charity, Contrition, etc.
- To be a faithful and devoted husband and father, if the member is a married man; married or unmarried, to be an exemplary Catholic gentleman and a dutiful patriotic citizen.
Dan Blomberg, FN Assembly #3591