Council 3880 History 

Faith in Action 2021-2022 

Our Council's History

As related by Charter Member, PGK, Jerry Mayer and
PGK, FDD, FSD and FVSM, Joe Kaltwasser



Charity is at the heart of our work and our faith — and it always has been. For the Knights of Columbus, charity means supporting a virtually boundless variety of projects including helping each brother and the community.

Here are Knights and Families of Council 3880 distributing Food and Goods to our community from the Crystal Lake Food Pantry.


The unity of our Order is founded in the sacred unity of our Church, which arises from the unity of God, who is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Our unity expresses our belief in one Lord, one Faith, one Baptism, and one God and Father of us all.

In October we display Pro-Life Crosses in honor of lives taken through Abortion.


Our bond of Fraternity is not merely a lofty principle. It is the way of life of a steadfast Knight of Columbus strengthened by the Holy Spirit. It is the responsibility of every Knights of Columbus council to be an exemplary model of Catholic fraternity.

Our Knights standing as members of our Fraternity at our Appreciation Dinner.


Members of the Knights of Columbus, be they Americans, Canadians, Mexicans, Cubans, Filipinos, Poles, or Dominicans, are patriotic citizens. We are proud of our devotion to God and country, and believe in standing up for both. Whether it’s in public or private, the Knights remind the world that Catholics support their nations and are amongst the greatest citizens.

US Flags displayed by the Knights.

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 Our Council History

The Fr. McCormick Council was formed on July 1, 1954. The men who formed the council were mostly returning veterans from World War II and the Korean Conflict. They had served their country valiantly and were determined to carry their dedication of service to Church, Community, County and Country by forming the Knights of Columbus Crystal Lake Council. Fr. E. A. McCormick (1884—1955) was the first chaplain of the council and was the pastor of St. Thomas the Apostle parish. Shortly after Fr. McCormick’s death in 1955, the council renamed itself the Fr. McCormick Council.

Over the past 60+ years, the council has had thirty plus Grand Knights. No charter members are still alive. The last two—PGK, Jerry Mayer and PGK, Norb Jacobs who has since moved and now was a Knight with the Huntley Council 11166. In the last 30 years, there have been 8 District Deputies including current members PGK, Tony DePippo, PGK, Bob Thomas, PGK, Ken Olsen and PGK, Joe Kaltwasser, PGK, John Orso. In addition Joe was a State Deputy and Vice Supreme Master. Jerry Mayer was also awarded Knight of the Round Table and he, Tim Flanagan and Andy Gardner started the Ladies Auxiliary.

In the early days of the council, meetings were held on the second floor of the American Legion hall, which is now Park Place at the corner of Oak St. and Woodstock St. In the late 1960’s the council was able to move their meetings to the current Oak St. Church.

In its 60 years, Fr. McCormick Council 3880 has helped organize numerous councils—St. Elizabeth Ann Seton 10678, Huntley Council 11166 (St. Mary’s), Cary Council 12824 (Sts. Peter and Paul), Hampshire Council 13034 (St Charles Borromeo),  and Marengo.

We have been an extremely busy council and have been active in numerous activities including the John Churchan memorial Corn Boil which has been in existence since the early 1960’s. Continuing the tradition was the annual St. Pat’s Dinner Dance originally run by PGK, Vince Motolla which is still a favorite to this day. One of Jerry Mayer’s favorite events was the Barn Sale held at Crystal Plaza and hosted by Andy Gardner and Tim Flannagan.

In recent years, many men have had the honor of becoming officers and Grand Knights of the Council. The council has earned numerous honors including over 20 Star Council awards and winning the Best Newsletter in the state for all councils. This tradition continues to this day and the council looks forward to another rewarding half century of service to Church, Community, and Country.

Our Council Namesake

Our Council is named in honor of Father E. A. McCormick. On May 2, 1922, Father McCormick was appointed the first permanent pastor of Crystal Lake. About that time, Mrs. Libby Reynolds, a parishioner, donated four lots to be used as the site of a new church, rectory and school. Later she donated a playground for the school children. On June 1, 1922, ground was broken for the rectory, the first home for the resident priests. It was completed in March, 1923. As the parish grew the old church was no longer large enough to accommodate the people who came to assist at Mass on Sundays so a new church was begun in June, 1924, and was dedicated July 12, 1925. The parish then consisted of eighty-four families. A school was begun on April 12, 1925, with the cornerstone being laid in June, 1927. School started on September 12th, with 105 pupils under the supervision of the Dominican Sisters of Springfield, IL.

Because Fr. McCormick was the foundation of St. Thomas the Apostle, we are proud to carry forward his tradition of activity in the community and surrounding areas. And, on July 1, 1954, the Fr. McCormick Council was given its charter from the Knights of Columbus Supreme Council. After 60 plus years, the council is still active and growing. Long live Fr. McCormick Council 3880 and it it continue to serve the needs of the community, church and our brotherhood.


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