Knights of Columbus
“Truly, I am honored to be your compassionate mother…there [at the church] truly will I listen to your cry and sadness in order to remedy and cure all their various troubles, miseries and pains.”
– Our Lady of Guadalupe to St. Juan Diego
In that same spirit of compassion, the Knights of Columbus is a Catholic fraternal organization dedicated to helping those in need.
Founded in 1882 to help the widows and orphans of the largely-immigrant Catholic community in New Haven, Conn., the Knights of Columbus today continues the mission throughout the world, serving families and communities through a vast array of charitable and spiritual activities.
Through its 14,000 councils, each uniquely shaped by the strengths of its members and the needs of its community, the Knights invites Catholic men to form a “band of brothers” strong enough to face the needs of those around us – and committed enough to respond.
Today, the Knights of Columbus is the world’s largest Catholic fraternal organization. Last year alone, thanks to the hard work and dedication of its 1.8 million members, the Knights volunteered more than 70 million hours to charitable causes, and donated more than $154 million to charitable needs and projects.
Inspired by the growing host of Knights of Columbus saints, including six Mexican martyrs of the 1920s, today”s Knights are challenged to bring our communities to a better future by being the leaders of charity today.
The Knights and Our Lady of Guadalupe
Ever since 1905, when the “Guadalupe Council” was established in Mexico City (the first in that country), Our Lady of Guadalupe has had a special place in the Knights’ hearts and work.
Recent Knights of Columbus events include the first-ever International Marian Congress on Our Lady of Guadalupe in 2009, which concluded with the 22,000-person Guadalupe Festival in Phoenix. The Knights also cosponsored the 2003 “Tilma of Tepeyac Tour” bringing the relic of the Tilma from the Cathedral in Los Angeles to more than 20 cities in the United States, drawing in excess of 100,000 people.
Today, the Knights of Columbus are lead by Supreme Knight Carl Anderson, who personally dedicated his administration to Our Lady of Guadalupe at her Basilica in Mexico City in 2000. In 2009, together with Msgr. Eduardo Chavez, Postulator of the Cause of St. Juan Diego, he brought the richness of Our Lady of Guadalupe and her message to thousands in the New York Times bestseller Our Lady of Guadalupe: Mother of a Civilization of Love.
Until 2013, the Knights’ Marian Prayer Program is spreading devotion to the Mother of the Americas to parishes throughout the world.
Archdiocese of Los Angeles
The Archdiocese of Los Angeles is the largest Roman Catholic Archdiocese in the United States with approximately 5 million Catholics in the Los Angeles, Ventura and Santa Barbara counties of Southern California. The diocese was established in 1840 and was created an archbishopric in 1936. Archbishop José Horacio Gomez is the fifth Archbishop of Los Angeles. Archbishop Gomez was appointed Coadjutor Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles by Pope Benedict XVIon April 6, 2010, and was installed Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles on February 27, 2011, upon the retirement of Cardinal Roger Mahony.
The Archdiocese also has six Auxiliary Bishops: Most Revered Edward Clark serving the Our Lady of the Angels Pastoral Region; Most Reverend Thomas Curry serving the Santa Barbara Pastoral Region; Most Reverend Alexander Salazar, Vicar for the Office of Ethnic Ministry; Most Reverend Oscar Solis serving the San Pedro Pastoral Region; Most Reverend Gerald Wilkerson serving the San Fernando Pastoral Region; and Msgr. James Loughnane, episcopal vicar for the San Gabriel Pastoral Region. Bishop Joseph Sartoris is a retired Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese.
There are 287 parishes located in 120 cities throughout the Archdiocese. In all, there are a total of 218 Catholic elementary schools and 50 Catholic high schools with more than 80,000 students.Together they comprise one of the four largest school systems in California in either the public or private sector.The Archdiocese is rich in cultural diversity with Mass celebrated in 42 different languages.The Patrons of the Archdiocese are Our Lady of the Angels, St. Vibiana, St. Patrick and St. Emydius.