Knights of Columbus hits $100 billion mark in life insurance

Printed from:

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – Despite continuing adverse conditions affecting the insurance industry, the Knights of Columbus announced earlier this week that it recently passed the $100 billion mark in life insurance in force.

“The $100 billion milestone is not simply a number,” Knights’ CEO Carl Anderson said in a statement. “It highlights the fact that each year we are protecting the future of more Catholic families.”

The Catholic fraternal organization, based in New Haven, Connecticut, offers insurance to its nearly 1.9 million members and their families worldwide through a network of more than 1,500 professional agents in the U.S. and Canada.

Founded in 1882 by a 29-year-old priest, Father Michael J. McGivney, the Knights began as a organization of lay Catholics committed to providing mutual aid and assistance to sick, disabled, and needy members of their community. The original insurance program was formed to help the families of deceased members through an assessment of living members.

Today, the Knights are one of the largest life insurers in North America, with $21 billion in assets, according to A.M. Best statistics.

“Our whole mission is to protect these families of our members. All of our agents are members,” said Knights of Columbus spokesman Andrew Walther in an interview with the NewBostonPost.

Consistent with the organization’s Catholic values, the Knights do not invest insurance proceeds in businesses or industries involved in human cloning, embryonic stem cell research, abortion, or pornography.

In 2012, the Knights awarded $167 million and provided 70 million volunteer service hours to Catholic and non-Catholic charities.

The Knights have partnered with other international nonprofits, including Habitat for Humanity and the Special Olympics, and provides assistance to Christians and other religious minorities in the Middle East.

“It’s really an enormous tapestry of charity” all over the world, Walther said. “Unlike most fraternal organizations who have seen membership declines, we’ve actually grown year after year for 40 plus years. That’s solid, steady growth on that side, and the fact that we’ve grown substantially on the insurance side allows us to do a great amount of good.”

Contact Kara Bettis at [email protected] or on Twitter at @karabettis