Okemos St Martha Knights of Columbus

Council 10006

What We Value

We Live by a Simple but Profound Set of Principles


We consider Charity to be the first and most important value; we strive to practice this virtue not just in the donation of money or material items, but in giving of self, in giving of time, in giving of care. The Order is known for creating and partnering with some of the most major charitable efforts today; this effort is echoed locally by our work with agencies serving youth, the elderly and those with intellectual disability.


Beyond the social bonds that are formed in a fraternal organization, we value the feeling of friendship and mutual support within the Order. Acting in concert with our Faith, the support of like-minded men allows us to grow and help others grow as we work together for Parish and Community


The dictionary defines unity as "an entity that is a complex or systematic whole." While that definition certainly applies to the Knights, it falls far short of the reality of unity as we experience it. Unity allows us to accomplish things that are just not possible when we act alone or in a less focused group. The donation of millions of hours of volunteer time coupled with nearly 200 million dollars a year of donations speaks to the fact that together we can move mountains.


For many, Patriotism is best expressed as a set of slogans, which can be uttered when needed. For a Knight, Patriotism is woven into all that we do. It finds its highest expression in the service that we give to those who serve our country, either active duty or veteran. We also are active in caring for the flag as a symbol of our nation and its values. Our community activities support others as an act of patriotism in action, and reflect the deep love of country that goes beyond the politics of any given era.

Who We Are

We are the "Strong Right Arm" of the Parish

Ask any Parish Priest about the Knights of Columbus and you will invariably hear of the absolute support and assistance that the local Council has consistently provided. From physical labor to financial donations, the Knights are known to be there when it counts. Our Council has a long history of supporting St Martha and is also known for the support given to other Diocesan initiatives.

Our Works

Both in our Parish and Across the World, We Make a Difference

Our Story

It started in a humble immigrant parish...

Late-19th century Connecticut was marked by the growing prevalence of fraternal benefit societies, hostility toward Catholic immigrants and dangerous working conditions in factories that left many families fatherless. Recognizing a vital, practical need in his community, Father Michael J. McGivney, the 29-year-old assistant pastor of St. Mary’s Church in New Haven, Conn., gathered a group of men at his parish on Oct. 2, 1881.

He proposed establishing a lay organization, the goal of which would be to prevent Catholic men from entering secret societies whose membership was antithetical to Church teaching, to unite men of Catholic faith and to provide for the families of deceased members.

As a symbol that allegiance to their country did not conflict with allegiance to their faith, the organization’s members took as their patron Christopher Columbus — recognized as a Catholic and celebrated as the discoverer of America. Thanks to Father McGivney’s persistence, the Knights of Columbus elected officers in February 1882 and officially assumed corporate status on March 29.


In addition to the Order’s stated benefits, Catholic men were drawn to the Knights because of its emphasis on serving one’s Church, community and family with virtue. Writing in The Columbiad in 1898, a year before he was elected supreme knight, Edward L. Hearn wrote that a Knight should live according to the virtues of loyalty, charity, courtesy, and modesty, as well as “self-denial and careful respect for the feelings of others.” Fraternity and patriotism were added to the Knights’ founding principles of charity and unity in 1885 and 1900, respectively.

The Order grew steadily and added the first Canadian Council in 1897. By the 1950's the Knights of Columbus Council was a fixture in the majority of American Parishes; further foreign expansion took place in the 1960's and 70's, Council 10006 was founded at St Martha in 1989 and has grown from a modest beginning to a membership of over 300 men. The efforts of these men have been recognized by the national organization by the awarding of the "Star Council Award", the fraternity's highest honor over 20 times. The Council has contributed to the life of the Parish in countless ways, and has made financial donations to both Parish and Community as a part of the mission of the Council; a mission that was established in a humble immigrant Parish by a young, idealistic priest.

Join Us and Become the Difference

If you have been searching for a way to make your Faith an active part of your daily life or need to respond to a call to serve others, we may well be the perfect way to make that happen! We are also a great group of men who enjoy each other's company while we are serving a higher calling. Click below to contact us, and we will be happy to share the story of the Order with you, and put you on track to begin your journey to Knighthood.