Coverage Areas:  National |  South Carolina |  Aiken |  Beaufort |  Charleston |  Columbia |  Greenville |  Myrtle Beach |  Rock Hill

Knights Council 1668 celebrates 100 years

GREENVILLE—When members of Knights of Columbus Council 1668 get together, they’re carrying on a century-old tradition.

The council, the third to be chartered in South Carolina, is preparing to celebrate its centennial with a Jan. 12, 2013, Mass and gala in Greenville. Members, however, have already started to pay tribute to their long tradition.

Council 1668 was officially chartered on Jan. 12, 1913, at St. Mary Church in Greenville with 55 members, and was the first in the Upstate. It is now affiliated with Our Lady of the Rosary and St. Anthony of Padua churches.

Newspaper accounts of the 1913 ceremony described a Mass at St. Mary and a banquet at the now-defunct Ottaray Hotel.

During World War I, the Knights participated in war bond drives and offered entertainment for soldiers who were stationed at Greenville’s Camp Sevier.

After the war, a building that was used as a coffee and donut shop for the soldiers was moved to the grounds of St. Mary Church and became the council’s first meeting place. The current hall on Mauldin Road was built by fellow Knights and opened in 1983.

In 1953, the council was officially named after Msgr. Andrew K. Gwynn, one of the initial members and its first official chaplain.

Msgr. Gwynn served as a priest in the Diocese of Charleston from his ordination in 1895 until his death in 1953. He became pastor of St. Mary in Greenville in 1900 and served there for 52 years. During his tenure, he was credited with renovating the church and helping start the school and establish missions around the Upstate.

Grand Knight Bill Hooks has been affiliated with Council 1668 for 28 years. He joined in 1984, but was transferred to Tennessee and Georgia, and reunited with the group after retiring in 2003.

“We’ve got a lot of great things happening — we have 188 members and we’re growing,” Hooks said. “I’m so proud of our past and the fact we’ve been involved in this community for so long, proud of the Knights that built the council. My focus now is what we can do going forward in the future, especially with everything happening in our church right now.”

Hooks said one of their main themes is promoting family and community. Recent events such as a dinner and ice cream social at Our Lady of the Rosary drew more than 100 people.

The Knights also work to support seminarians and have committed to help educate members of their parishes about issues related to faith and religious freedom, and the importance of voting in the upcoming general election.

  • Diocesan Events Calendar
    View All Events
    Nov 17 Diocese of Charleston Native American Catholic Heritage Celebration
    From the Calendar of Native American Ministry
    Nov 18 Vietnamese Martyrs Celebration
    From the Calendar of Vietnamese Ministry
    Dec 1 Black Catholics Heritage Celebration
    From the Calendar of African American Ministry
    Dec 15 Simbang Gabi for Filipino Catholics
    From the Calendar of Filipino Ministry
    Dec 25 Diocesan Television Christmas Special Fox 21
    From the Calendar of Ethnic Ministries
    Jan 412:00 am Class 2019 Ordination Retreat
    From the Calendar of Diaconate
    Jan 812:00 am Retiro Espiritual de Emmaus
    From the Calendar of Pastoral Juvenil
    Jan 1210:00 am Junta de Equipo Diocesano de Emmaus
    From the Calendar of Pastoral Juvenil
    Feb 911:00 am Ordination of Permanent Deacons
    From the Calendar of Diaconate