Establishing a Hispanic Round Table
HISPANIC ROUND TABLES
ESTABLISHMENT and FUNCTIONAL GUIDELINES
The Hispanic Community presents our greatest opportunity for growth in the
Knights of Columbus, however, because of cultural and language differences
we have not been adequately successful in bringing Catholic Hispanic men
into the Order. Not only has this been detrimental to the Knights of
Columbus, it has also deprived the Hispanic Community of taking advantage
of the benefits associated with being a Knight. We must provide the
opportunity and environment that will encourage Hispanic men to join the
Knights of Columbus; one way to do that is by establishing an Hispanic
WHAT IS AN HISPANIC ROUND TABLE?
An Hispanic Round Table is established by the Council at those parishes
having a significant Hispanic population for the purpose of giving these men
the opportunity to have their own meeting, conducted in their language and
the latitude to choose programs and activities that fit into their culture. This
includes Spiritual Development which is a key requirement in the Hispanic
Community and typically not provided to the desired extent in English
All members of the Hispanic Round Table must be Knights of
Columbus, either Exemplified members of the Council or Online
Not all Hispanic members of the Council will be part of the Round
Table. Included with these Guidelines are two slides from a Supreme
Webinar that broadly describes which Hispanic men might do best in
a Round Table environment. Remember though, it should always be
the member’s choice as to participation in the Round Table or regular
Council – or both.
An Hispanic Round Table is NOT a separate Council – it is an
integrated part of the existing Council.
HOW IS IT FORMED?
In order to establish the Round Table on solid footing and with the necessary
support, the following steps should be taken:
The District Deputy and/or State Round Table Chairman should
attend the Council Officer’s Meeting (regularly scheduled or specially
called) to explain the structure and benefits. While not every Officer
or every Council member will agree with the establishment of an
Hispanic Round Table, there needs to be general, unified support
within the Officer ranks.
Meet with the Council Chaplain and Hispanic Priest, if one is assigned
to the parish. It is important to obtain the agreement of the clergy and
their willingness to support the Round Table. An Hispanic Priest
supporting the Round Table can be a great help in recruiting Hispanic
men into the Order and Round Table. He can also be helpful in
identifying potential Round Table Coordinators.
Identify Hispanic men in the parish with leadership skills that would
be good candidates to run the Round Table. These men can be
existing members of the Knights of Columbus or potential recruits.
Talk to them, explain the Round Table, ask them to consider
becoming the Coordinator.
The Grand Knight appoints only one Hispanic Round Table
Coordinator. The Coordinator can be any Degree Level.
The Grand Knight completes the Report of Round Table Coordinator
(Form 2629 – copy attached for reference) and submits to Fraternal
Mission Department at Supreme, State Deputy, District Deputy and
State Round Table Chairman.
If your Council already has Hispanic members (regular attendees or
not), inform them of the pending establishment of the Round Table
and give them the opportunity to participate. Those that choose to
participate in the Round Table are already Knights and can be of great
Order recruitment materials in Spanish; brochures, Form 100’s,
folders, etc. The State Round Table Chairman can provide a list of
items the Financial Secretary should order.
If your parish has a Spanish Mass(es), ask the Priest to allow a
speaker at the end of each Mass on a given weekend to promote
membership in the Knights and the Round Table. This should be
advertised in the Parish Bulletin in advance. The State Round Table
Chairman can arrange for a Spanish speaking speaker if necessary.
Following each Mass, an Hispanic recruitment team should be in the
Narthex to talk with potential members, provide the “membership
packet” and encourage them to join.
OPERATING A PARISH ROUND TABLE:
The Round Table can begin to function with as few as three or four
There are no elective offices in the Knights of Columbus Round
Table. The appointed Coordinator is the designated leader of the
Round Table and its members. He also acts as liaison between the
Round Table and Council.
The Coordinator should attend Council Business Meetings and have a
seat at the table with the Program Directors. He should provide
updates to the Council regarding Round Table programs, projects,
fund raisers, recruitment, etc. Form 100’s should be presented for
vote by the Council and any support needed from the Council should
be requested. Likewise, the Council should request any support
needed from the Hispanic Round Table through the Coordinator.
The Round Table has no dues; members pay their annual dues to the
The Round Table Coordinator should appoint two qualified members
to take the lead in:
Programs and Spiritual Development
₸ Programs – The Round Table must have a sense of purpose and
accomplishment; the members have to feel they are getting something
out of it. This comes as a result of supporting their Priests and their
parish and by implementing family/youth-oriented programs that are
of interest to them and supports their culture.
₸ Spiritual Development – The Knights of Columbus “Faith in
Action” Program should be used as the basis for Round Table
programs and spiritual development. In addition, the Knights of
Columbus CIS library can provide literature, videos, CD’s, etc. that
can be used at Round Table meetings to support members’ desire for
spiritual development tools.
₸ Recruitment – Drawing new Hispanic members into the Knights of
Columbus and the parish Round Table is an on-going effort that
requires focus and someone to lead.
The members of the Round Table choose the programs, activities,
fund raisers, spiritual development tools, etc. they want to do by
majority vote or consensus, whichever process they have agreed upon.
It is important that the Council not restrict the ability of the Round
Table to make these choices by requiring Council votes or sanction.
The Annual Report Knights of Columbus Round Table (Form 2630)
should be completed by the Coordinator to include all volunteer
activity by the Round Table for the previous year. This form is
submitted to the Fraternal Mission Department and given to the Grand
Knight for inclusion in the Form 1728 submission by the Council.
ROUND TABLE FINANCES:
The handling of Hispanic Round Table finances is a sensitive issue for both
the Council and Round Table, thus it is of utmost importance an equitable
process be agreed upon between the Council and Round Table at the outset
of its formation. The following considerations should be kept in mind:
All Hispanic members of the Round Table are members of the
Council; dues are assessed by the Council for all members and are
payable to the Council. Dues go into the Council’s general fund and
are used to pay Per Capita assessments, the cost of supplies and other
materials obtained from Supreme, etc.
The Council has a 501(c)(8) tax exempt status – the Round Table does
not. All monies obtained by the Round Table through fund raisers or
other means must be turned over to the Council Financial Secretary
for proper accounting and deposit by the Council Treasurer.
The Council Treasurer shall write checks to pay Round Table
expenditures for fund raisers, donations and other associated costs.
The Financial Secretary should set up an Account (Hispanic Round
Table) and sub-accounts in Officers Online to keep track of all monies
handled on account of the Round Table (except dues). This Account
and sub-accounts would be used in the Report of Receipts and
Voucher functions. This will keep an accurate accounting of the
receipts and expenditures associated with the Round Table.
The Financial Secretary should provide the Round Table Coordinator
an “Income and Expense Report” (obtained from Officers Online) for
their financial activity monthly.
The Council and Round Table need to establish upfront an equitable
process for providing the Round Table access to the money they have
raised. The fund raisers, donations, volunteer work (and associated
costs) accomplished by the Round Table will typically be directed
toward the Hispanic Community. Since the Round Table is an
integrated part of the Council, whatever they accomplish is part of the
overall accomplishments of the Council.
Within the constraints of the money raised by the Round Table, the
Council should provide direct access through request by the
Coordinator to the Financial Secretary without the Council voting on
the expenditure. On the other hand, if the Round Table wants to
conduct an event or activity that exceeds their “account balance”, the
Coordinator must bring the request to the Council for consideration
Hispanic Round Table revenue and expenditures can also be
accommodated through the budget process.
These Guidelines are geared specifically toward the Hispanic
Community because they represent the largest ethnic group and the
greatest opportunity for growth in the Knights of Columbus.
However, these same Guidelines can be used for any ethnic group that
has a significant presence in your area.
You should also consider establishing Round Tables for Young
Adults (age group 18 – 24) for the same reasons as establishing them
for ethnic groups. Just as culture and the language barrier drives the
need for ethnic Round Tables, Young Adults’ interests do not
necessarily align with the Council. Activities that appeal to their age
group and spiritual development tools (very important to this age
group) that address this need in their lives can best be determined by
them. Young Adult Round Tables can provide the environment that
would encourage young people to become part of the Knights of
As State Round Table Chairman, I welcome the opportunity to help
establish your Round Table and get it functioning. My contact
information is shown below:
Philip L. Br odow ski, FDD, PGK
Geor gia State Council
New Council Development Dir ector
Round Table Chair man