About Us

Cardinal A. Stepinac Council 11774


Located in Windsor, Ontario at 1711 Walker Road.
For directions to the Council click here.

Contact St. Francis of Assisi Corporation Restaurant
 519.252.9357 Fax: 519.252.2819

Contact Grand Knight Jerry Penava
Home Phone:

Knights of Columbus Insurance
One of the great opportunities available to all Brother Knights is the wonderful insurance program.
Contact Andrew J. Despins, FIC, CSA, PGK, Field Agent, either by phone at 519.979.0899 ordespins@kofc.org

About Our Council


Cardinal A. Stepinac Council #11774 was chartered on April 26th, 1996 through the efforts of Fra. Jozo Cuic, our first Charter Grand Knight Ivo Lujic and a host of other parish men. The Council is named after Cardinal A. Stepinac. Our Council is one of the six in District 76 within 106 Districts in Ontario under the Ontario State Council.

Our Council works closely with St. Francis of Assisi in Windsor, providing assistance and funds for the Church and many other local charities and projects. The members of the Council are active participants in the parish and the community at large through their support of parish and local events.

We have over 132 members as of July 2013, all working for the betterment of our Church, Council, community, family and youth. Since its creation, Cardinal A. Stepinac Council #11774 has continued to grow and flourish and we look forward to your participation in the Council.


About the Knights of Columbus

The Knights of Columbus is an order of Catholic gentlemen committed to the exemplification of charity, unity, fraternity, patriotism, respect for life and defence of the priesthood and religious freedom.

On October 2nd, 1881, a small group of men met in the basement of St. Mary’s Church on Hill House Avenue in New Haven, Connecticut. Called together by their 29-year-old parish priest, Father Michael J. McGivney, these men formed a fraternal society that would one day become the world’s largest Catholic family fraternal service organization. They sought strength in solidarity, and security through unity of purpose and devotion to a holy cause; they vowed to be defenders of their country, their families and their faith. These men were bound together by the ideal of Christopher Columbus, the discovered of the Americas, the one whose hand brought Christianity to the New World. Their efforts came to fruition with the incorporation of the Knights of Columbus on March 29th, 1882. They were the Knights of Columbus.

The Order has been called “the strong right arm of the Church,” and has been praised by popes, presidents and other world leaders, for support of the church, programs of evangelization and Catholic education, civic involvement and aid to those in need.

Father McGivney’s founding vision for the Order also included a benefits program to provide for the widows and orphans of deceased members. The Order’s benefits program has expanded substantially to serve more effectively the Knight’s growing membership. Year after year, the Knights of Columbus has earned the highest possible quality ratings for financial soundness from A.M. Best and Standard & Poor’s. The Order provides the highest quality insurance, annuity and long-term care products to its members, along with many other fraternal benefits.

The history of the Order shows how the foresight of Father Michael J. McGivney, whose cause for sainthood is being investigated by the Vatican, brought about what has become the world’s foremost Catholic fraternal benefit society. The Order has helped families obtain economic security and stability through its life insurance, annuity and long-term care programs, and has contributed time and energy worldwide to service in communities.

The Knights of Columbus has grown from a few members in one Council to more than 14,600 Councils and 1,843,587 members throughout the United States, Canada, Philippines, Mexico, Poland, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Panama, Bahamas, Virgin Islands, Cuba, Guatemala, Guam and Saipan. We are now expanding into the Ukraine and Lithuania.

Last year alone, in addition to raising and donating more than $168 million to charitable needs and projects, Knights volunteered more than 70.1 million hours of their time to charitable causes, donated blood 426,575 times. The Knights of Columbus have donated over $1.5 billion over the last 10 years!

The Heritage of Cardinal A. Stepinac Council 11774


Cardinal A. Stepinac was chartered on April 26, 1996. We are actively involved with our Roman Catholic Parish of St. Francis of Assisi in Windsor. Our members are involved in many activities including community, youth, and of course, parish. Family is of the utmost importance to our fraternal organization. We encourage our members to be active and have input in our Council. This only makes us more relevant and stronger.

Our Council is one of numerous of District 76. The other Councils include Father Nicholas Point 4375, St. Jerome 8682, Father Paul Wattson 8919, Most Precious Blood 9645 and St. Gregory 9671.

Our meetings are held on the first and third Wednesday every month at 7:00pm.

The Blessed Cardinal Alojzije Stepinac

A Short Biography
History always balances its accounts. For years the communists endeavoured to separate Croat Catholics from the Pope. They used all means to sever church unity, vane pledges and threats, bribery and murder, trickery and torture.

The focal point in that artificial conglomeration, Yugoslavia, and other satellite countries to Moscow – was identical: the communist notion of the state must not allow the existence of any “alien powers” on its territory, much less that these “powers” be somehow tied to “foreign” or “supra-national institutions.” What disturbed the communist dream most were the tight ties of local churches with the Pope.

In Tito’s Yugoslavia, that Yugoslavia where communism had a “human face,” Stepinac was arrested in 1946, sentenced to a shameful trial, imprisoned and detained until his death (February 10, 1960) because his response to those communist efforts was calmly and firmly “No!” He said no to attractive proposals and then confirmed his no when faced with force.

“My conscience is clear and calm. If you will not give me the right, history will give me that right,” he said during that deplorable trial.

It was the victory of history that was witnessed on Saturday, October 3, 1998 when St. Peter’s Successor -  that Peter that Stepinac remained loyal to, to the point of martyrdom – as he pilgrimaged to the Marija Bistrica shrine, to the place where Stepinac himself most liked to pilgrimage to and pray. A pilgrimage that reached its peak in the beatification that recognised that Croatian Cardinal as a martyr.

May 8, 1898: Alojzije Stepinac was born in Brezaric, Krasic parish, about 50 kilometers from Zagreb. Croatia was then part of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy.

Summer 1916: After attending high school in Zagreb conscripted in World War I to the Italian front. He was captured. Later he enrolled as a volunteer and was deployed to Salonica.

Spring 1919: He returned to Krasic and dedicated himself to a rural life. This was the time of his great choice. He enrolled into University and became engaged (1923) but both experiences were brief.

July 1924: Decides to become a priest.

October 28, 2924: Enters the Pontifical Germanicum-Hungaricum College in Rome. Attends seven years at the Pontifical Gregoriana University.

October 26, 1930: On the feast of Christ the King, ordained in Rome as a priest. Ordained with him too was Franjo Seper (born 1905) who on March 5, 1960 became Stepinac’s successor to the Zagreb Archdiocese. On November 1, Stepinac gives his first Mass in the Santa Maria Maggiore basilica.

July 19, 1931: Celebrated his first Mass in Krasic.

October 1, 1931: Appointed the Archbishop’s Master of Ceremonies.

December 24, 1931: Founded the Zagreb Archdiocesan Caritas.

May 28, 1934: Pope Pius XI appoints him as the Archbishop Coadjutor with the right to succeed Antun Bauer. His Bishop’s motto was; In te, Domine, spe-ravi (I place my trust in you my Lord).

June 24, 1934: Ordained a bishop. Immediately began intensive activities: visiting numerous parishes and initiating traditional pilgrimages to the Marija Bistrica shrine.

July 1937: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land.

December 7, 1937: Archbishop Bauer dies and Stepinac is appointed Zagreb’s Archbishop. Tirelessly dedicates himself to human rights, primarily in the Kingdom of Yugoslavia and then, particularly during World War II, in the independent State of Croatia. During the Nazi occupation he is not afraid to publicly and courageously defend the rights of the persecuted: Serbs, Jews, Gypsies and Croats.

May 17, 1945: Archbishop Stepinac’s first arrest, nine days after the communists came to power. He was then released on June 3.

June 4, 1945: Stepinac met with Tito.

September 22, 1945: Joint Pastoral Letter by Croatian bishops pointing out the existence of communist violence.

November 4, 1945: Attempted assassination on Stepinac in Zapresic. Compelled to stop any pastoral visits outside Zagreb.

September 18, 1946: At 5:30am arrested in the Archbishop’s Palace while preparing to celebrate morning mass.

September 30, 1946: The start of the shameful fabricated trial.

October 3, 1946: The day of the calm and determined speech by Stepinac at the trial. That same day, 52 years later, the Pope beatified Stepinac.

October 11, 1946: Reading of the court’s sentence by which he was sentenced to sixteen years imprisonment and the loss of all civil and political rights for five years.

October 19, 1946: Imprisoned in Lepoglava.

September 25, 1952: The non licet document released according to which bishops forbade registration to the “Association of Priests” which the communists made up in an attempt to destroy the church’s unity.

January 12, 1953: Pope Pius XII announces Stepinac’s elevation to a Cardinal.

February 10, 1960: Dies in Krasic.

February 13, 1960: Funeral in Zagreb’s Cathedral where he is buried.

February 17, 1960: Pope John XXIII gives his shattering speech during the memorial mass in St. Peter’s Basilica.

December 4, 1980: The process for the cause of Saints commenced. The first step was taken by Msgr. Franjo Kuharic on November 14, 1969, the then Apostolic Administrator of Zagreb Archdiocese. A special plea for the cause of saints submitted to the Pope on February 17, 1969 by two of Stepinac’s successors: Cardinal Franjo Seper, the then Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and Msgr. Franjo Kuharic, Archbishop in Zagreb.

February 14, 1992: The Croatian Parliament annulled the sentence against Stepinac.

September 10, 1994: During his first pastoral visit to Zagreb, Pope John Paul II prayed at Stepinac’s grave. The Pope’s speech about the courageous Cardinal was greeted with long standing applause.

July 3, 1998: In the presence of the Pope at the Vatican, a decree by the Congregation for the Causes of Saints is read to confirm Stepinac’s martyrdom.

October 3, 1998: During his second pastoral visit to Croatia Pope John Paul  II beatified Stepinac at the Marija Bistrica shrine.


Membership in the Knights of Columbus


Charity – Unity – Fraternity – Patriotism

Make your family a part of ours. join us today!

Origin and Objectives

The Knights of Columbus was chartered in 1882 by Father McGivney and six parishioners of St. Mary’s Parish in New Haven, CT. They saw a need for an organization to serve the church and community. These basic principles set forth by the Knights of Columbus still prevail to this day.

Our Catholic faith teaches us to “Love thy neighbor as thyself.” Members of the Knights of Columbus show love for their neighbors by conducting food drives and donating the food to local soup kitchens and food pantries, by volunteering at Special Olympics and by supporting, both spiritually and materially, mothers who choose life for their babies. Knights recognize that our mission, and our faith in God, compels us to action. There is no better way to experience love and compassion then by helping those in need, a call we answer every day.

No one of us is as good as all of us. Members of the Knights of Columbus all know that together we can accomplish far more than any one of us could individually. So we stick together, we support one another. That doesn’t mean that we always agree or that there is never a difference of opinion. It does mean that as a Knight of Columbus you can count on the support and encouragement of your Brother Knights as you work to make life better in the parish and community.

The Venerable Michael J. McGivney founded the Knights of Columbus in large part to provide assistance to the widows and children left behind when the family breadwinner died often prematurely. The Order’s top-rated insurance program continues to do this today, as to individual Knights, who annually give more than 10 million hours of their time to assist sick and/or disabled, members and their families. In the Knights of Columbus, we watch out for an take care of one another.

Members of the Knights of Columbus, no matter where they are located, are patriotic citizens. We are proud of our devotion to God and country and believe in standing up for both. Whether its in public or private, the Knights remind the world that Catholics support their nations and are amongst the greatest citizens.

Council Meetings

All Council meetings are held at the Knights of Columbus Hall.  The Council membership meet the first Wednesday of the month at 7:00pm. Council officers meet the third Wednesday of the month at 7:00pm.

4th Degree Assembly

Any third degree member in good standing, one year after the anniversary of his First Degree is eligible for membership in the Fourth Degree.

The primary purpose of the Fourth Degree is to foster the spirit of patriotism by promoting responsible citizenship and a love of and loyalty to the Knights’ respective countries through active membership in local Fourth Degree groups. These groups have their own executive and are called “assemblies.”

Certain members of the Fourth Degree serve as honor guards at civic and religious functions, an activity that has brought worldwide recognition to the Knights of Columbus. The remainder of this page provides information on the Assembly affiliated with Council #11774.

Fr. Alphonse Kerckhaert
Formed: August 7th, 1992
Meetings: Executive on the first Monday of the month, General on the third Monday of the month.

Knights of Columbus Insurance

Hundreds of thousands of members of the Knights of Columbus have answered the invitation to participate in the Order’s fraternal insurance program.

The Knights of Columbus offers many insurance products ranging from Whole Life Insurance, Term Insurance, Annuities, Long Term Care and RRSPs.

The Insurance Agent for Council #11774 is Andrew Despins. For members of Council #11774 Andrew is the best person to answer any questions or explain the details of any of the Knights insurance products. He can be contacted at 519.979.0899 or at despins@kofc.org.

The insurance programs funds many of the worthy charity programs sponsored by the Knights of Columbus. Become an insurance member today. For more on Knights of Columbus Insurance product visit the Supreme website.