Our local Knights of Columbus is nearly 70 years old, nearly as old as the organization was when our local council was formed.

There were 34 founding members including Joel Whitehurst, Tony D. Toscano, John Amabiel,CQ Dr. Robert Loeffler, and more founded the Knights of Columbus No. 3726 council. 71 years earlier Father Micheal J. McGivney founded the Knights in New Haven, Connecticut on Nov 8, 1953. The Knights were founded on four principles; Fraternity, Charity, Unity, and Patriotism.

For Lent, the Knights host a fish fry fundraiser. Another fundraiser they do is the Tootsie Roll drive in October to help adults with intellectual disabilities and seven percent goes to the Special Olympics. According to District Deputy Tom Mello, 95 percent of the funds raised stay in Los Banos.

The local Catholic organization has served Los Banos with those funds in numerous ways, one of which is helping veterans display their flags. Not only do they help veterans, but they’ve also organized food drives and funded scholarships through raffles. “We’re there to help people,” Mello said in an interview.

One of the oldest functions of the Knights is insurance. Back in the day of McGivney, many fathers died in factory work and left their families without support. The Knights maintain insurance policies for families even if they aren’t members of the council.

The Knights are not confined to the United States. The Knights of Columbus is an international organization, spreading from Mexico to even Ukraine. One of the international works of charity they’re organizing is aid to refugees fleeing the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

The Knights are always looking for more members, practicing Catholics are always welcome in their ranks.

Founded to help others, they’re another force for good within the Los Banos Community. Mello’s favorite part, “is being around fellow Knights. Whether it’s a fundraiser or even a meeting, we have a good bunch of people that really work together well.

They always have one goal in common, and that’s to get the best results of anything they do.”

Javier Powell