More than 60 Knights of Columbus honor guards from throughout California gathered at St. Mary’s Cathedral on June 29 for a Mass marking the passage of its official “fourth degree” regalia of tuxedo, cape, and feather-plumed chapeau into history after nearly 80 years.

“We wanted to celebrate for the last time the rich history of the traditional regalia,” John Dooley of San Pedro Calungsod Assembly told Catholic San Francisco. Our Lady of Guadalupe Assembly and San Pedro Calungsgod Assembly sponsored the “Blessing of the Swords” Mass celebrated by Father Arturo Albano, a Fourth Degree Knight.

The Knights’ board of directors adopted last summer a new uniform for the fourth degree consisting of a suit, tie and beret. July 1 was the official change-over date. The organization said their research showed the traditional regalia presented a barrier to membership, especially among younger men.

Full story at Catholic San Francisco.