The Knights of Columbus is a global fraternity of Catholic men who dedicate themselves to serving their parish and community. The brotherhood is united by the principles of charity, unity, and fraternity and was initially created by Fr. Michael McGivney to take care of widows and the poor. Today the mission continues through a network of local councils.
Maui’s council is number 8578 and has over 50 members; many of whom are active and regularly partake in service projects and fundraisers. Tom Borges is the Grand Knight who oversees the council and makes sure that the group is accomplishing its mission of community outreach.
“The Knights of Columbus is a Catholic men’s group that looks for opportunities to help the Church and community,” says Tom. “We put on many fundraisers to financially support local ministries like the Malama Pregnancy Center. Currently, we have been focused on raising funds for those who have suffered from the Lahaina disaster. Since we are an international organization, we have received monies from the mainland and around the world to help those who are in need in Lahaina. All the donations that we have received have gone directly to the people of Lahaina.”
Additionally, the Knights seek to serve others by assisting the local community members in various ways. Recently, much of their service has been directed toward housing those who have been displaced by the fire. “Pretty soon people are going to be kicked out of the government-provided shelter and will need to find housing,” says Tom. “We are volunteering with many relief organizations to provide man hours to assist with the search for housing and other physical needs.”
The Knights meet every second Thursday of the month at 7:00 p.m. in the Deacon Borges Room at St. Anthony’s (named after Tom’s father). At the business meeting, the Knights pray together, discuss recent service projects and fundraisers, and plan future events.
Tom has a great vision of growing the reach of Council 8578 and is working to increase membership and create a scholarship for students who attend St. Anthony’s School.
Beyond the service and generous fundraising, the Knights are a band of brothers who grow in virtue and faith together.
“Becoming a Knight, for many, is the first step toward returning to the faith in a serious way,” says Tom. “It was night and day for me. When I returned as an active member, my spiritual life increased and I have become a much stronger Catholic.”
“It is a pretty neat brotherhood,” says Tom. “We are bonded by a mutual goal and belief. We pray together and share our journeys with one another. There is a great feeling of belonging as a Knight and many of us have gained confidence in our faith and ourselves.”
All men, 18 years and older, are encouraged to join the Knights of Columbus. If you are interested in joining or learning more, please call Tom at 808-298-3432.