“Throughout its 131 years, the Knights of Columbus has always practiced charity as its first principle,” Supreme Knight Carl Anderson said in a June 24 statement.
During the 2012 calendar year, Knights of Columbus donated over $167.5 million and over 70 million hours to charitable causes.
“With so many people enduring great hardship,” Anderson said, “the Knights of Columbus is happy to help provide solutions to real people’s problems through this great outpouring of charity by our members over the past year.”
Over the past decade, the Knights of Columbus has donated $1.475 billion to charity and given more than 673 million hours of volunteer hours to support charitable works.
In 2012, the Knights financial contributions increased for the 13th year in a row, growing by $9.4 million to $167,549,817. Additionally, volunteer service hours grew by more than 64,000 to 70,113,207 in 2012.
Key beneficiaries included natural disaster victims, physically and intellectually disabled and economically disadvantaged persons as well as organizations such as Special Olympics and Habitat for Humanity.
The Knights also provided scholarships and educational support and helped sponsor many church and community projects, the survey revealed.
Continuing its legacy as one of the first groups to recruit blood donors back in 1937, the survey found that the Knights helped gather over 420,000 blood donations in 2012.
Since its founding in 1892 by Father Michael J. McGivney in New Haven, Conn., the Knights of Columbus has grown into the world’s largest lay Catholic organization with over 1.8 million members throughout the world. (CNA)