Knights of the Eucharist

Created: May 09, 2024
Category: General News

As the feast of Corpus Christi approaches, K of C councils and assemblies prepare to support Eucharistic processions

By Elisha Valladares-Cormier



Father Benjamin Roberts wasn’t sure what to expect when his parish, Our Lady of Lourdes in Monroe, North Carolina, planned its first Eucharistic procession last year. Organized with help from Our Lady of Lourdes Council 10615 and Msgr. Lawrence C. Newmann Assembly 2208, it was to be the culminating event of a “Eucharistic Triduum” featuring Mass, adoration and talks in English and Spanish. But how many people would come out to walk and pray with Christ in the Eucharist on the Sunday evening?

Quite a few, it turned out. Hundreds of parishioners and visitors filled the street behind Father Roberts as he carried the monstrance through Monroe on June 8, 2023, escorted by a Fourth Degree Knights of Columbus honor guard.

But what really stood out to Craig Mazzucca, Council 10615’s grand knight, was the number of people along the route who stopped what they were doing, came out of their homes and stood or knelt in reverent silence as the Eucharist passed.

“It was moving for a lot of parishioners, and it brought me to tears,” he said of the procession and the reactions it received. “It gave me hope that God is important to people, not just to us Catholics, but to everyone.”

More parishes have begun holding Eucharistic processions since the National Eucharistic Revival began in 2022, and Knights have been instrumental in many of them: mapping the route, providing an honor guard, serving as marshals and leading prayers along the way. As the feast of Corpus Christi approaches June 2, councils and assemblies are again preparing bring the Eucharist — the source and summit of the Catholic faith — out to fellow believers and non-Catholics alike.

“Eucharistic processions give us the opportunity to share Jesus Christ with the community and not just in church,” said Andrew Young, faithful navigator of St. Paul on the Lake Assembly 2696 and a member of St. Paul on the Lake Council 12121 in Grosse Pointe Farms, Michigan. “We go out and share Jesus Christ with everyone, showing the reverence that we have for our Lord.”

Council 12121 and Assembly 2696 helped to organize the first Corpus Christi procession at St. Paul on the Lake Catholic Parish in 2019 after advocating for the devotion for several years. The procession has grown in attendance and scope ever since. This year, it will travel 2.5 miles along Lake St. Clair, ending at Our Lady, Star of the Sea Catholic Church in Grosse Pointe Woods.

“What better way to talk to the community than have Jesus Christ leading the way, showing other people he is the true way?” reflected Grand Knight Richard Sandifer of Council 12121. Processions also provide a striking witness to the real presence of Jesus in the Eucharist: “Who’s going to spend their Sunday afternoon on one of these walks if all we’re doing is carrying a piece of bread around?”

Bishop Andrew Cozzens of Crookston, Minnesota, who is leading the National Eucharistic Revival, made a similar point in an interview with Columbia in 2022.

“I think [a Eucharistic procession] is a profound way to affect culture,” said Bishop Cozzens, a longtime Knight. “When it happens, people think, ‘Wait a minute, what are those Catholics doing over there? They’re singing hymns of praise to God in the presence of what looks like a piece of bread?’ It might seem crazy, but because we know Jesus’ word — ‘This is my body’ — we know it’s true. And so we’re proclaiming the truth in a beautiful and joyful way.”

Reverence for the Eucharist helped bring Daniel Koning, now financial secretary of Risen Savior Council 8741 in Albuquerque, New Mexico, into the Church in 2011. Koning attended Mass with his wife and her family for years and was struck by how they approached the sanctuary to receive holy Communion.

“I had a high regard for how reverently they received the body and blood of Jesus Christ and how important it was to them,” Koning said. “There are other things that went into my conversion, but that was part of the equation.”

Despite converting more than a decade ago, Koning had never belonged to a parish with a Corpus Christi procession, so helping to organize and lead Risen Savior Catholic Community’s first procession in 2023 was eye-opening. “It was very meaningful for us who participated in it,” he said.

Knights carried the canopy over the monstrance as Father Charles Ugochukwu, pastor and council chaplain, brought the Blessed Sacrament to four different altars on church grounds. Parishioners paused for adoration and prayer at each altar before returning to the church for Benediction.

Because it was the parish and council’s first Eucharistic procession, some initial groundwork needed to be done, such as purchasing the canopy. But, said Koning, “The benefits far outweigh the minor costs that go into it. These displays of Eucharistic devotion spiritually enrich us.”

The Knights in Monroe, North Carolina, and Grosse Pointe Farms, Michigan, likewise encouraged other councils to work with their pastors to organize a Eucharistic procession for Corpus Christi this year, especially if the parish hasn’t had one recently. It’s an important way for Knights to participate in the Revival and respond to Supreme Knight Patrick Kelly’s call to be “Knights of the Eucharist.”

“We are asked to go out and spread the Gospel in any way that we can,” said Mazzucca. “And for us, for me, actions like this speak louder than words.”

If a parish doesn’t have a procession planned for this year, Sandifer said, it’s not too late for councils to approach their pastor about organizing one. When establishing new traditions, pastors sometimes just need to know that Knights will have their back.

“Whether it was the processions or establishing weekly Eucharistic adoration at our parish, it was a Knight who approached the pastor about it and pushed the idea along,” Sandifer said. “If we as Knights take our faith seriously, we need to advocate for the activities that help build that faith not only for ourselves, but for all the men and their families around us, because the Knights of Columbus is about building up the Church.”

Find resources for planning a Eucharistic procession, including a guidebook and training video, at


ELISHA VALLADARES-CORMIER is associate editor of Columbia and a member of Sandusky (Ohio) Council 546.