Knights of Venus of the United States
Ritual of Initiation


When the hour has arrived for opening the Council, the Knight Commander will take his station, and promptly call the Council to order by giving one rap with his gavel, and say:
KNIGHT COMMANDER: Officers and members will clothe themselves with proper regalia. Officers will assume their respective stations. Second Sentinel, you will admit no one until instructed by the Knight Commander.
If there be any officers absent, the Knight Commander will appoint some brother temporarily to fill same.
KNIGHT COMMANDER: Senior Warden, you will see that the doors are securely guarded, examine all present, and satisfy yourself that they are qualified to remain; you will obtain from all the universal pass word, and the word of a K. of V., first communicating them to me, that I may know you have them yourself.
Senior Warden communicates the pass words to the Knight Commander, examines doors, and then requires all brothers present to give pass words , should any one be without them, he will report same to the Knight Commander, who will communicate them to such member, if entitled to same. A traveling card is prima facie evidence of a member in good standing, or being square of the books, which must be vouched for by the Secretary
After the Senior Warden has performed this duty, he will report to the Knight Commander, as follows, (using sign of respect).
SENIOR WARDEN: Knight Commander, I have examined all present, and find them in possession of the pass words and qualified to remain. The doors are guarded from within and without by trusty sentinels.
KNIGHT COMMANDER, calls up Council by four distinct raps: Since our doors are securely guarded, and all present qualified to remain, I declare this Council regularly open for the transaction of such business as may properly come before it, and hereby forbid
all confusion and discord that may mar our deliberations.
Three raps with the gavel by Captain General; two raps by Lieutenant Commander; one rap by Knight Commander.


KNIGHT COMMANDER: The secretary will retire to the ante-room, collect the remainder of the fee, and report immediately back to the Council.
Secretary retires, collects the fee, returns to council and reports as follows:
SECRETARY: Knight Commander the fee has been paid.
KNIGHT COMMANDER: Brothers, we are about to receive into our mystic tie, a person whose character has been investigated and who has passed the secret ballot. During the conference of this degree, I command that strict order be maintained, that the lesson we are about to teach this candidate will be impressive and lasting.
Senior Warden advances to altar, gives sign and retires.
KNIGHT COMMANDER: Master of Ceremonies, you will select such assistants as you may require, and prepare the room for the reception of the candidate.
SECOND SENTINEL: Knight Commander, there is an alarm at the door.
KNIGHT COMMANDER: Attend the alarm and report the cause thereof.
Second Sentinel opens wicket and says in loud voice.
SECOND SENTINEL: Who is it that disturbs the deliberations of this Council?
SENIOR WARDEN: It is the Senior Warden, accompanied by a stranger, who has been duly proposed, whose character has been investigated, and whose petition for membership has been accepted by this Council, and being duly prepared, now desires to be wrought into our mystic tie, that he may be taught to better perform the duties of God-fearing men, and to practice the principles of this Mystic Order, Knights of our beloved Venus, who was always revered as Pure, Virtuous and Noble.
SECOND SENTINEL: You will wait until I communicate your wishes to the Knight Commander.
Second Sentinel then closes the wicket, and addresses Knight Commander as follows:
SECOND SENTINEL: Knight Commander, the alarm was caused by our Senior Warden,
In company with a stranger, who has been proposed in due form, whose character has been investigated, and whose petition has been accepted by this Council, and, being duly prepared, is now desirous of being received into our mystic tie, that he may be taught to better perform the duties of God-fearing men, and to practice the principles of this Mystic Order, Virtue, Justice, Truth and Mercy.
KNIGHT COMMANDER: Master of Ceremony, you will assist the Senior Warden in conducting the candidate.
Second Sentinel, you will admit the Senior Warden and the stranger.
Second Sentinel opens door, allows Senior Warden to enter, and Master of Ceremonies will take hold of candidate on opposite side of Senior Warden.
KNIGHT COMMANDER: Brother Senior Warden, whom is it have here?
SENIOR WARDEN: Mr. …, who has conceived a favorable opinion of our Order, has been duly proposed and accepted, and now desires to become one of our number.
KNIGHT COMMANDER: Mr. …, do you make this request of your own free will and accord, unbiased by friends and uninfluenced by mercenary motives?
KNIGHT COMMANDER: Do you believe in the existence of a Supreme Being whose eye is ever upon us, and whose ear is always open to those who call on him with reverence?
KNIGHT COMMANDER: Is it your wish to be of service to your fellow creatures in their hour of need and distress?
KNIGHT COMMANDER: Are you willing to assume a solemn and binding obligation to faithfully carry out the tenets of this Order, Virtue, Justice, Truth and Mercy, so far as may be in your power to do?
KNIGHT COMMANDER: Senior Warden, you will conduct the candidate to the Prelate for further examination.
Candidate is then conducted to Prelate.
SENIOR WARDEN: Worthy Prelate, by direction of our Knight Commander, I present Mr. … to you for further examination.
PRELATE: Mr. … have you a desire to promote justice and suppress wrong?
PRELATE: Have you a strict regard for female virtue? Think before you speak.
PRELATE: Are you willing to risk your life, if need be, to protect and preserve unsullied the character of the innocent, weak and helpless?
PRELATE: Have you still a desire to unite with us in the inseparable bonds of the Order, for the purposes to which you have assented?
PRELATE: If you have answered truthfully, I can assure you that no conflicting sentiment, nor requirement here will mar your principles, nor your duties in the outer world, be they what they may.
In ancient time (as at present) our Order was devoted to the cause of Virtue, Justice, Truth and Mercy, and the tenets to which it. is dedicated once assumed can never be eschewed, or cast aloof.
Charity beyond reason we do not expect, virtue must be regarded for its peerless worth, and morality observed for the general good of all.
We require absolute secrecy, and desire all our disciples to p0ld an interest in our noble cause and a just observance of the tenets of our faith. Let these preliminary teachings be deeply engraven upon your heart. They are priceless when well observed and attributes that cannot be bought with paltry gold. By the noble principles that ever characterized the Carites, of ancient times, I welcome you, and in commemoration of their faith In purity and innocence, we accept your answers as sincere.
You will now be required to give some evidence of you fortitude to defend those who are helpless and oppressed, and then be conducted to the altar for obligation. Pass on.
KNIGHT COMMANDER: Mr. …, since you have answered in the affirmative, the several questions propounded to you, and believing in the sincerity of your answers, and before receiving our obligation, I am free to tell you that it is binding, that once assumed can never be repudiated, and one which will not conflict with the duties you owe yourself, your family, your country or your God Again I ask you, are you willing to assume this obligation?
CANDIDATE (must answer): I am
KNIGHT COMMANDER: You will kneel upon both knees at the altar before you, right hand over your heart and left hand extended, palm outward.
Candidate is placed in position by Senior Warden.
KNIGHT COMMANDER: Let no one enter upon so important a duty without first invoking the blessing of Almighty God.
PRELATE: Oh, thou everlasting God, the giver of all good things, we have assembled as the sons of men, and thy children, to renew our obligations of brotherhood, and to learn lessons of Virtue, justice, Truth and Mercy toward all mankind; thus to lighten the burdens of each other. Oh, thou Almighty God, prosper us in this labor of love.
Bless this candidate now kneeling at thine altar, and encourage him in all his efforts, and grant that he may never go astray, and follow the path of the evil-minded. Grant that he may devote his life to thy services, and become a true and faithful brother
among us, so that he may be better enabled to display the beauties of Virtue, justice, Truth and Mercy.
Grant that the obligation may have full effect upon him now on bended knee, and teach us the true reverence of thy great, mighty and terrible name. May holiness to the Lord be engraved on all our thoughts, words and actions, and in all our endeavors for good, lead us into the pastures of knowledge. Amen.
ALL: Amen
KNIGHT COMMANDER: Now that the blessing of the Almighty has been invoked, you will repeat the following obligation.
ALL: Remember your obligation.
KNIGHT COMMANDER: You are now a brother of ours under moral bonds, stronger than any material ones we could place upon you. Before removing the blindfold I wish to call your attention to the penalty of your obligation. Always remember it.
All members will point to Samael with right hand, saying slowly: “Remember your obligation and the penalty.”
Candidate is led outside.
SECOND SENTINEL: Knight Commander, there is an alarm at our inner portal.
KNIGHT COMMANDER: Attend same, ascertain cause and report.
SECOND SENTINEL, opening wicket: Who dare thus alarm the deliberations of this Council?
SENIOR WARDEN: The attendant of the Knight Commander with the newly obligated brother, who desires to receive further instructions.
Second Sentinel so reports to Knight Commander, who directs that they be admitted. They are admitted, and candidate is seated in front of the Knight Commander, who gives him the following unwritten work.
KNIGHT COMMANDER: My brother, I will now instruct you in the secret work of this degree. When you approach the outer door, you will alarm the Sentinel by any rap, and
when he opens the wicket you will communicate to him the universal pass word which is … when he will permit you to enter. You will then clothe yourself in a black apron and advance to the inner door and give this alarm and in this manner …, which will be answered from within by ..., when you will give one rap, at which he will open the wicket, when you will announce to him that you are a member of the initiatory degree of this council, upon verification of which by the Secretary you will be admitted. You will be very careful in the use of this pass word and raps. The universal pass word is changed every year, and is given to members only by the Knight Commander of this council, and never by one member to another. As an initiatory member you can visit only the council to which you are connected. Having entered the Council Chamber, you will approach the altar and salute the Knight Commander in this manner: …
You will then take your seat. Should you wish to retire before the council is closed, you will advance to the front of the altar and make the same sign, which will be recognized as on entering.
We have but one grip, which will be given you in the second degree, as will also the grand hailing sign, or sign of distress, and all other unwritten work.
My brother, the secrets of this degree are now in your keeping, be careful that you never communicate them to any one or let escape from you any of our mysteries to those not entitled to them . Be always mindful of the obligations you have contracted in the presence of the Almighty God, and remember, my brother, if you approach cool and indifferent to our sacred mysteries, you will be more blamable after receiving the Degree of Perfection, than you would have been before, and will have more to answer for at the great and awful clay of judgment when the secrets of all hearts shall be disclosed.
My brother, demonstrate to us the goodness of your heart by a steady pursuit of virtue, and a sincere love for all good brethren, but particularly for those who receive you into their fellowship and have given you their support and protection. This order was founded upon the most worthy principles, Virtue, Justice, Truth and Mercy. It is a secret organization in the fullest meaning of the term. It is secret for the purpose of preventing the admission of those who have, or should have no interest in its proceedings. It is secret in the sense that a family is secret and sacred in all its private relations, and is secret in order to better and more worthily carry out the ends set forth.
You will be entitled to receive the Second, or Degree of Perfection, at our next meeting, when you will be entitled to all the benefits and privileges of the order.
The Senior Warden will now conduct you to the ante-room, when you will be permitted to retire.
Senior Warden with new member, advances to altar, salutes Knight Commander, and escorts the brother to ante-room, when he will return to and resume his station in the Council.


KNIGHT COMMANDER: Brothers, having passed through our regular order of business, I shall now proceed to close this Council. *  *  *  *.
KNIGHT COMMANDER: Officers and brothers, have we heeded the call of the needy and have we relieved their wants?
ALL ANSWER: We have.
KNIGHT COMMANDER: Let no brother go forth with any bitterness in his heart, and may we ever prove faithful to our obliga­tions, and always be on the alert to hasten to the cry of distress, and thereby merit the approval of Him whose eye is ever upon us.
Brothers, you will now give the sign.
Having relieved the wants of the afflicted, and aided those in distress, without further ceremony I now declare … Council No. … closed until our next regular session.
Captain General gives three raps with gavel, Lieutenant Commander gives two raps, and Knight Commander one.