The Order of Knights of St Columbanus has over the past few years, under the direction of our Past Spiritual Director and Chaplain, Monsignor Gerard Dolan, been compiling a library of books dedicated to the sacraments.

The books examine the history behind each sacrament and how they impact on our faith as Catholics. These books are aids for Catholic teachers who wish to study the sacraments in more depth.

These publications can be ordered directly through Ely House.


As a remote preparation for the Eucharistic Congress which took take place in Dublin in 2012, the Order had decided to make a study of the Church’s Sacraments, beginning with the Sacrament of Baptism.

The seven sacraments are like a door opening onto the very life of God. Baptism is the entry point to the other Sacraments and is the basis of the whole christian life, incorporating us into the Church community and making us share in her mission.

We are grateful to Brothers Hugo Tumelty CK12, Paul Murphy CK126 and Barry C. MacMahon, Past Supreme Knight, for their individual presentations and insights into various aspects of Baptism, in the compiling of this booklet. It is our hope that members of the Order through diligent study of these guidelines in their Councils will obtain a renewed sense of the power and beauty of our Catholic tradition and will be better equipped to assume their indispensable role in the mission of the Irish Church today.

Hard copies can be ordered from Ely House


We have been reflecting on the Sacrament of Baptism, Eucharist and Penance and Reconciliation and now we turn our attention to the Sacrament of Confirmation. Basically, Confirmation is a confirming of our Baptism. Confirmation complements Baptism by conferring the Holy Spirit and it is closely linked with the Eucharist. Confirmation confers the gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit on Christians to enable them fulfil their mission as members of the Church. It is a sacrament that requires more attention today as many parents of candidates are at a loss to explain to their children what Confirmation is exactly.

I wish to convey my sincere gratitude to Brothers Brendan McCann, past Supreme Chancellor (now Supreme Knight) and Hugo Tumulty CK12 for their dedicated work in compiling this booklet. We trust this presentation on the Sacrament of the Holy Spirit will be studied in conjunction with the previous booklets on the sacraments throughout the Order.

Hard copies available from Ely House


Following our reflection on the sacraments of Baptism and the Eucharist, we now turn our attention to the sacrament of Penance and Reconciliation. This sacrament which is in crisis at the present time for various reasons is the sacrament of God’s mercy – the sacrament which liberates, consoles, forgives, reconciles us with the Lord and with one another.

There is an urgent need to rediscover the ministry of God’s mercy in the Church today. The sacrament of Reconciliation is a source of support, guidance, healing and sanctification for us. It is the ordinary means of obtaining pardon and the remission of grave sin committed after Baptism. We must rediscover the ‘community’ aspect of this sacrament. Based on the demands of the Gospel there is great need for instruction regarding moral conscience and sin.

Hard copies available from Ely House


This booklet is the result of the Knights of St.Columbanus’ wish to support the institution and Sacrament of Marriage — to make a statement that we believe that the promise couples make on their wedding day is not empty, but a solemn undertaking before God, and that they will strive to make it work in the face of life’s trials and tribulations. It seeks to assist and encourage those who have the opportunity to praise and promote lifelong marriage as the better option, even in today’s world of personal gratification and short-term contracts. Sacramental Marriage within the Catholic Church is, and should be acknowledged as, the one path that upholds the principles and solemn oaths of the marriage ceremony. It is perhaps an anomaly that a male organisation such as ours should have a beautiful and vibrant marital component to our spiritual and social life, and that we should enjoy so many events and occasions that reflect the beauty of the Sacrament.

Hard copies available from Ely House


As we continue our study of the Church’s Sacraments, we are now invited to reflect on the Holy Eucharist, which is always at the centre of the Church’s life. We are called to refresh and renew our belief in the Eucharist, to deepen our understanding of Catholic teaching on this Sacrament and to increase our reverence for this great Mystery of Faith.

The Church’s doctrine regarding the Eucharist has been expounded with deep care and with great authority over the centuries. In preparing this booklet, I thank very much Brothers Hugo Tumelty CK. 12, Paul Murphy CK 126 and Barry C. MacMahon, Past Supreme Knight for their thorough research and personal faith-sharing on the Eucharist. It is our hope that the booklet will be studied throughout the Order in conjunction with the section on the Sacrament of the Eucharist in the “Catechism of the Catholic Church”.

It has been truly a rewarding and fruitful exercise to make this booklet available to our Order for individual and group study and reflection.
Gerald Dolan
Past Supreme Chaplain

Family Prayer Book

It was with great pleasure that the Knights of St. Columbanus published this booklet as our contribution to the celebration of the World Meeting of Families in Ireland.
We hope this guide will help families to share, pray and reflect, grow in faith and love in their family life though this year and future years – to celebrate: “The Gospel of the Family: Joy for the World”.
This booklet is designed as a practical aid to prayer and faith for all the family and it is divided into:

  • The 12 months of the year.
  • The liturgical theme for each month is indicated e.g. May – Month of Our Lady.
  • Liturgical feast days and a selection of Irish Saints feast days are listed.
  • For each monthly theme there are activity suggestions for families to share in faith e.g. making a May Altar – saying family prayers.
  • There are also brief summaries of the central beliefs of our Catholic faith and appendices of important devotional prayers.

We hope this will help families pray together and live a more active faith life as a family. It is our wish that parents will continue as the first teachers of their children and guide them in their own faith journey.

Hard copies can be ordered from Ely House


Some years ago Unum Omnes, of which the Order is a member, instituted a Men’s Day.  It was decided that this would take place on the Feast of St. Joseph each year.  His Feast is March 19th.

A prayer was written especially for Men’s Day and is recited each year by all members of Unum Omnes throughout the world on that day.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God
The Father has sent You to the men of all times
Give us the vocation to be holy men in Your Church
who bravely assume their faith,
Give us strength in our assumed vocation
Help and inspire us for action and encourage those
who consecrated themselves to Your Kingdom
Merciful Lord, touch our hearts everyday
to take up our crosses, and to follow You.
Jesus, You are the Saviour, let us pray to You,
For all of men who said Yes to You in the Family, in the Church,
Who said Yes in the World.
Let our lives become a living Gospel
preaching the Joy and Hope in every area of our lives.
Our loving Lord, give all the Fathers loving and sensible Souls,
to understand Your will,
Give us the force to fulfill our marital and parental obligations
Give us loving and faithful spouses, with a soul as Mary’s
Let us love our children in the way that Joseph loved Jesus
Take care of our Families, because we are the living cells of Your Church.
We ask for all these trusting in your promise to be with us today
and all days till the end of the world. Amen.