Faith In Action Program Model

On April 6, 2018, Supreme Knight Carl Anderson announced the introduction of the Faith in Action program model. Although Surge…with Service has served us well through the years, this replacement model is being implemented in order to simplify our program structure and better align programs under main priority areas.

Overall Faith in Action Model:

Q: What is Faith in Action?
A: Faith in Action will be the new umbrella for all Supreme Council-recommended programs, replacing Surge…with Service.

Q: Why the need for the change?
A: Surge…with Service has provided a strong foundation for Knights of Columbus programming over the nearly five decades of its life cycle. During that time we have added and removed various programs. While our mission remains unchanged, it has evolved to meet a changing world. With the announcement of the Building the Domestic Church While Strengthening Our Parishes initiative we committed to evaluating our service to parishes and families so that our work might become even more relevant and effective.

Faith in Action reflects this shift with a strong call to action and a focus on quality faith-filled family programs. It simplifies the requirements and gives a home to all of our Supreme Council-recommended programs.

Q: What happened to Building the Domestic Church While Strengthening Our Parish?
A: Building the Domestic Church While Strengthening Our Parish remains and is foundational to the vision and ongoing strategy for creating strong and dynamic parish-based councils. This will include resources for spiritual renewal and the integration of family,council and parish life in a complementary relationship. The Faith in Action program model is an evolution of the Building the Domestic Church initiative and focuses on the most direct way a council can impact its parish community – activities. All of the programs included in Building the Domestic Church have now been integrated into the Faith in Action model or retired. There is now only one model that encompasses all Supreme-recommended programs and it is Faith in Action.


Q: What are the program categories?
A: The new program categories are Faith, Family, Community, and Life. We havereduced the number of
categories from six to four and eliminated the Youth and Councilcategories.

Q: What happened to the youth category?
A: The Youth category is consolidated into the Community category to better align all community outreach programs including those involving youth and their families.

Q: Do I need to assign a council youth director?
A: No, there is no need to assign a council youth director. The program responsibilities have moved under the Community program category.

Q: With no youth Category, where do we record our activity for Columbian squires?
A: If your council is involved with a Columbian Squires program, which should now be sponsored by your parish, you can record that activity in the Community category. However, Columbian Squires is no longer a featured program within the Faith in Action model.

Q: What happened to the Council category?
A: The Council category is consolidated into the Faith and Family categories. Council programs that involve fraternity should include both faith-based activities and family activities. These programs offer opportunities for Knights to come together in shared purpose to foster unity and spirituality.

Q: Why were these four categories chosen: Faith, Family, Community, and Life?
A: These fourcategories represent our main priorities as an Order. This model by no means seeks to eliminate the need for Knights to serve youth or foster fraternity; rather, it seeks to expand on these in a more holistic way.

  • Faith: Our goal is to strengthen our men and their families in the faith. When we entered the Order, we were reminded to constantly inform ourselves in the Catholic faith. This formation goes beyond mere facts or religious practice to an authentic connection with a loving God and his son Jesus Christ.
  • Family: Father Michael J. McGivney sought to strengthen the familial bond of father to mother and children to parents. Our family programs are an evolution and response to a society that seeks to weaken the bonds of family. We must make it clear that society should value a family that is faithful to God and each other.
  • Community: As Knights of Columbus, we are called to serve our family and our God. Our first
    principle is Charity, at home with our families or in our communities. This is a critical part of our
    Knights of Columbus mission.
  • Life: The urgency of the threat to a culture of life cannot be misunderstood. Respect for the dignity of life demands a commitment to human rights across a broad spectrum. Both as Knights of Columbus and as followers of Christ, “Catholics must be committed to the defense of life in all its stages and in every condition” (Saint John Paul II, 1995).


Q: How many programs are required to fulfill Columbian Award requirements for each category?
A: Four (4) in each category are required to earn the Columbian Award. This has not changed. In fact, to earn the Columbian Award, the council is required to complete a maximum of sixteen (16) programs instead of the twenty-four (24) that were required in the Surge…with Service model.

Q: Are there still featured programs?
A: Yes, the featured programs have remained and are listed below. Note, however, that Columbian Squires is no longer a featured program.

Q: What are the Supreme-recommended programs?
A: The Supreme-recommended programs are below.  More information is available about each by clicking on the program name.


  • Spiritual Reflection New (Required)
  • Refund Vocation Support Program (Featured)
  • Building the Domestic Church Kiosk & Series
  • Marian Icon Prayer
  • Rosary Program
  • Holy Hour New
  • Sacramental Gifts New
  • Into the Breach

  • Consecration to the Holy Family (Required)
  • Food for Families (Featured)
  • Keep Christ in Christmas
  • Family Fully Alive
  • Family of the Month/Year
  • Family Week
  • Family Prayer Night New
  • Good Friday Family Promotion New

  • Helping Hands New (Required)
  • Coats for Kids (Featured)
  • Global Wheelchair Mission (Featured)
  • Habitat for Humanity (Featured)
  • Catholic Citizen Essay Contest
  • Disaster Preparedness
  • Free Throw Championship
  • Soccer Challenge

  • Novena for Life New (Required)
  • Marches for Life (Featured)
  • Special Olympics (Featured)
  • Ultrasound Initiative (Featured)
  • Christian Refugee Relief
  • Silver Rose
  • Mass for People with Special Needs New
  • Pregnancy Center Support New

Q: Will the council still receive four credits, or full credit, per category for a featured program?
A: No. The council will only receive two credits, or half credit, per category for a featured program. While we realize that this may seem like a penalty, we are encouraging councils to enhance their fraternal and parish life with a variety of enriched programs available in the new Faith in Action model or programs uniquely their own.

Q: Are there required programs?
A: Yes. In each category, in order to earn the Columbian Award, we ask that each council conduct one essential program. The vast majority of councils are already doing one or more of these types of programs. These programs were designed to enrich the spiritual life of the council, family and community and are incredibly simple to implement, often complementing other activities the council is already doing.

Q: Are there any new supreme-recommended programs?
A: Yes. In an effort to provide symmetry to the program model, we introduced the“four programs in four
categories” model. Each category then has eight programs. This facilitated the need to add programs to some categories – programs that we found many councils are doing already.

Q: What happened to the Columbian squires?
A: The Columbian Squires program is still a program of the Knights of Columbus, and a council may choose to continue to support the program within their parish. However, all Columbian Squires programs (in the United States and Canada) should have transferred their sponsorship to the local parish. Councils may continue to support and gain a credit in the Community category for this program.

Q: What happened to the Affirmation of Wedding Vows program?
A: There were several issues with this program that lend themselves to fall outside the norms of the Roman Catholic Church. This may create confusion in the liturgy and place our bishops and priests in a very challenging situation. In light of this, Affirmation of Wedding Vows will no longer be part of the updated program model.

Q: What happened to the substance Abuse Awareness Poster Contest?
A: While popular in some areas, this program had very low participation rates. As with all things, our programs must evolveto make room for other programs that have more involvement and engagement. With that in mind, the choice was made to remove this program as a Supreme-recommended program. However, this does not prevent councils from continuing to promote the program or its intent to our youth.

Catholic information service:

Q: What role does the Catholic information service (CIS) play in the new Faith in Action program model?
A: CIS will continue to provide the same resources it has in the past. As always,councils are strongly encouraged to order booklets that will supplement the Faith in Action Programs.

Safe Environment Program:

Under Faith in Action, certain state and council officers/chairmen are required to take safe environment training and may also be required to provide authorization for a background check. Some positions also have access to Praesidium’s ARMATUS Administration dashboard to view member compliance within their council or jurisdiction.

State Officers and Roles:

  • State Deputy – Training, Administration
  • State Advocate – Training, Administration
  • State Program Director – Training, Administration
  • State Youth Director – Training, Background Check, Administration
  • State Family Director – Training, Background Check, Administration
  • State Community Director – Training, Background Check, Administration
  • State Squire Chairman – Training, Background Check, Administration

Council Officers and Roles:

  • Grand Knight – Training, Administration
  • Faithful Navigator – Training
  • Program Director – Training, Administration
  • Family Director – Training, Background Check
  • Community Director – Training, Background Check
  • Chief Counsellor – Training, Background Check
  • Adult Counsellor – Training, Background Check

If members in certain positions are not compliant within thirty (30) days of notification, they are subject to removal from those positions.

As the Service Program Personnel Report (#365) is being completed, ensure that all member email addresses are accurate. Praesidium, the Knights of Columbus’ safe environment partner, will use these email addresses to send email notifications to the program directors and chairs required to complete safe environment training and to provide authorization for a background check. Directors and chairs should look for email notifications from Praesidium in their inbox or spam folder for their assigned username and password to complete the required training and the link necessary to provide their background check authorization. Knights of Columbus covers all costs associated with these requirements.

Email notifications are unique to each recipient and cannot be forwarded or used by another director or chair, and are also time sensitive. The recipient must complete the training and background check authorization within thirty (30) days of notification.


Q: Will the Columbian Award Application (sP-7) Form be updated to support the new model?
A: Yes, the Columbian Award Application (SP-7) will be updated to support the model, although it might not be available at the beginning of the 2018-2019 fraternal year.