Manila, Philippines – The Knights of Columbus (K of C’s) Manila Council 1000 is celebrating its 108th Founding Anniversary on April 23, 2013, with the theme “Be a Light to Others.” His Eminence, Luis Antonio G. Cardinal Tagle, also a member of the Knights of Columbus, was the keynote speaker in the celebration held on April 19, 2013.
President Benigno S. Aquino III said K of C’s Manila Council 1000 enkindles the spirit of compassion and kindness through the hope that its members bring to families and communities, helping them rise above poverty and leading a more dignified life. He asked them to help sustain the momentum of positive change and be champions of humanity.
The Americans who came to the Philippines at the turn of the century founded on April 23, 1905, the Manila Council 1000 as the first K of C council in the county, located in Intramuros, Manila. Its Charter as a civic organization promoting Christian values was granted by the Supreme Council in New Haven, Connecticut, United States of America (USA). Its inauguration introduced the Order of the K of C to the Philippines. K of C’s Manila Council 1000’s initial membership was composed of 29 Americans. By 1917, many Filipinos had joined the council. Many Filipino Grand Knights have made a name in public service, business and legal profession.
As the membership grew, Fr. George J. Willmann, SJ, who was responsible for the growth of the Order in the Philippines, founded on September 9, 1958, the Knights of Columbus Fraternal Association of the Philippines. Today, the order in the Philippines has 296,916 members in 2,497 councils, with the Manila Council 1000 having 659 members. Guided by the principles of “Charity, Unity, Fraternity, and Patriotism,” they participate in such services as charity work for the poor, legal assistance, free medical clinic, relief project, sharing a home with orphanages, scholarship grants, Boy Scouts sponsorship, support to social undertakings of Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines, and the housing program of Gawad Kalinga.
We congratulate the Knights of Columbus Manila Council 1000 Grand Knight Antonio T. Hernandez, and other Officers, in their collective efforts to keep alive the spirit of service to humanity, by reaching out to people and communities in need in the Philippines. CONGRATULATIONS AND MABUHAY!