Knights of St. John, International
Commandery & Auxiliary: A Legacy of Over a Century!
Holy Family Commandery No. 115 of the Knights of St. John International was chartered in September 1905 at Holy Family Catholic Church in Woodmore, MD. The Knights have contributed numerous services to the parish over the years. Although replaced in 1990, our men built and cared for the first Parish hall which stood from 1889 to 1984. The building immediately behind the Parish church, the gray building of St. John’s Hall was constructed by our Knights and employed as a classroom. Later it was used for storage. Today it has been restored by dedicated parishioners to use as a hall and renamed the St. John Memorial Prayer Center. Our Knights assisted with the repair of walkways, helped to keep the grounds and cemetery presentable and donated toward the construction of the current Parish hall. Until just a few years ago, we generated income and nurtured fellowship through annual gospel music shows. Today, many of our number are advanced in years and we want to instigate a new beginning with the recruitment of young men who are willing to be of service to God and to the community.
Holy Family Woodmore Ladies Auxiliary, Subordinate No. 16, Knights of St. John International was chartered on May 24, 1906. The charter was signed by Supreme President Louise Zancy and approved by the Supreme President John Williams, who also held the title of Knights of St. John. Ms. Johanna White served as the Supreme Secretary. With Father M. J. Seanlow as the Spiritual Director, the charter served surrounding communities. The Ladies Auxiliary was incorporated internationally in 1996. Members of area Auxiliaries helped to plan living quarters in a room over the sacristy for the first Pastor of Holy Family, Father John Albert SSJ. The church had no rectory. Members also helped plan and work at picnics and Oktoberfests to raise money for the church’s needs. Members included: Mamie Williams, Nancy Fletcher and Sadie Wright. Members were also involved in providing shoes and clothing for the needy children living on farms whose parents were sharecroppers in the area. Bessie Queen, Auxiliary No. 16, Agnes Washington, Auxiliary No. 109 and Lena Jones, Auxiliary No. 16, helped select the first electric light fixtures in the church. They replaced oil wall lamps with reflectors. Auxiliary members visited members of the county government to request provisions for safe drinking water for Lincoln Elementary School. The late Sister Veronica A. Fletcher used her home for years as storage for supplies to be issued to the needy. Additional good deeds performed by members of the Ladies Auxiliary No. 16 included, but were not limited to: sponsoring Masses, holding retreats, preparing breakfast for the elderly, hosting bake sales, painting the hall, donating flowers for the altar, pledging for the brick drive and donating food baskets for the needy. Currently, we run a Haitian Coffee fundraiser. Like the Knights, we also want to encourage new blood so that our long legacy of faith and service will continue into the future.
We welcome Catholic women ages fifteen to sixty-two years of age who are active in their faith. Ladies over sixty-two are invited to be social members of the Ladies Auxiliary. While we do not currently have this component, traditionally young girls from eight years of age to sixteen were invited to participate in a Junior Auxiliary.
The Holy Family Commandery of the KSJI & the Ladies Auxiliary of the KSJI meet on the Second Sunday of the month at 1:30 PM in the Parish Hall.
John (Jodi ) Windsor
Cynthia A. Bowie