Knights for Neighbors (K4N) provides Council members, their spouses, children, widows, and friends a community marketplace and networking hub. We showcase local businesses and services available from our midst.
The mission of K4N is grounded in the Catholic understanding of subsidiarity, the principle that governmental and economic powers exist to allow persons created in the image of God to flourish.
With subsidiarity as a guiding framework, families and businesses are free to develop and share their talents and skills. Subsidiarity is not a new idea: it has roots in Acts 2 when communities of believers supported themselves through prayer and the voluntary exchange and sharing of goods and services. Popes, philosophers, and Church leaders have elucidated and encouraged subsidiarity as a way of life among people of goodwill. To learn more about subsidiarity, please click here to see a list of quotes, references and resources.
“A community of a higher order should not interfere with the life of a community of a lower order, taking over its functions.” Centesimus Annus (“The Hundredth Year,” Donders translation), Pope John Paul II, 1991, #48.
"Still, that most weighty principle, which cannot be set aside or changed, remains fixed and unshaken in social philosophy: Just as it is gravely wrong to take from individuals what they can accomplish by their own initiative and industry and give it to the community, so also it is an injustice and at the same time a grave evil and disturbance of right order to assign to a greater and higher association what lesser and subordinate organizations can do. For every social activity ought of its very nature to furnish help to the members of the body social, and never destroy and absorb them. Quadragesimo Anno (“After Forty Years”), Pope Pius XI, 1931, #79.
"He that hath a talent, let him see that he hide it not; he that hath abundance, let him quicken himself to mercy and generosity; he that hath art and skill, let him do his best to share the use and the utility hereof with his neighbor." Pope Leo XIII quoting Pope Gregory I in Rerum Novarum.22
Subsidiarity and Community Flourishing
We are sacred persons, not solitary individuals. We are children of God the Father. We are called to imitate a traditional family, namely, Jesus, Joseph, and Mary. As a people-in-community, we flourish in families, parishes, free associations, and local economies.
K4N holds that economic localism—supporting the businesses and people in our own faith communities—promotes unity, accountability, friendship, chivalry, self-reliance, and craftsmanship.
This model respects a consistent ethics of life from conception to natural death, private property, free-enterprise, volunteerism, consent of the governed, and the U.S. Bill of Rights—itself an expression of natural law and Magna Carta.
Knights for Neighbors
- Calls for a return to a decentralized, human-scale model of local vitality amidst an increasingly impersonal and secular world.
- Presents an economic model that prizes the good of the family, consumer, customer, and the natural environment.
- Channels financial gain to actual families-- in contrast to big-box retailers and transnational corporations.
- Defines the good life as attaining to spiritual and holistic aims (the whole person) not mere profit for the sake of greed.
- Respects private property and volunteerism, thus avoiding collectivist harms of socialism.
- Holds that profits are subject to ethics and the common good, thus avoiding the shortcomings of untrammeled capitalism.
- Succeeds in various forms of Distributism* (not re-Distributionist) and among thousands of Cooperative organizations and equity ownership companies.
* "The main tenets of Distributism are widespread property, just wages, the subordination of economic activity to human life as a whole (reunion of ethics, spirituality and economics), subsidiarity, and restoration of a cooperative and fraternal spirit. Successful as these Distributist tenets are in challenging entrenched idiosyncrasies, they still struggle to establish a firm foundation for a truly “third way” beyond capitalism and socialism, individualism and collectivism.
Distributism should capitalize better on its own potentialities by calling into question the root cause of today’s problems. My contention is that the Distributist embrace of economic localism cannot be divorced from a sound theology of the particular; “the local” needs to be rooted in an ontological soil in order to be a unique reality. I also argue that Distributist concern for the dignity of the human person and for the welfare of the community should be expressed within the context of a Christian anthropology. If Distributists want to avoid the pitfalls of materialism, they need adequate theological support. More precisely, they need to speak a Trinitarian language," Ovidiu Hurduzeu, "Insights into a Trinitarian Distributist Worldview," The Distributist Review