100 years ago, the first Kolping Families were founded by immigrants in Brooklin/São Paulo. While there were nine founding members at the time, there are now about 5,000 members in Brazil who are involved in a wide variety of social projects. This anniversary was celebrated on June 21-22 in Brooklin with 300 guests from different Brazilian states, from Germany, Chile and Uruguay.
In a welcome note to the festivities, General Secretary Dr. Markus Demele emphasized: “Brazil is one of the nuclei of Kolping’s international expansion. 100 years ago, courageous brothers, in fact only men at the time, started spreading the tradition of journeymen’s associations, especially with a focus on furthering vocational training in Brazil. Over the decades, an active social association has evolved in many Brazilian states, offering people help in the form of fellowship and very concrete support in different types of projects. … What I find particularly impressive is the diversity of your activities: There is the fight against aridity with water projects in the northeast of your vast country, there are the vocational training projects in the south, there is the commitment to children and adolescents, there are hotels and income-generating projects, and most of all there are hundreds of Kolping Families in which a spirit of community becomes alive that reflects the spirit of the Gospel.”
Network of lively partnerships
Dr. Demele went on to point out how impressive it is to experience the diverse network of lively partnerships that has been characteristic of Kolping Brazil for decades. “So many people in Europe and other places in the world have close bonds with Kolping Brazil and are eagerly waiting to be with you again or to have you as their guests.”
One of the highlights of the celebrations was the dance performance of the Kolping community Jd. São José from Suzano- São Paulo, which represented the regions of Brazil where Kolping is present. They also presented the projects offered for young people. The contributions of six employees, who talked about their personal experiences, were also very emotional and moving. Another highlight was the tribute paid to Paolo Link, who played a major role in shaping the association for decades as National Praeses of Kolping Brazil.
Read more about the celebrations here: https://kolping.org.br/noticias/noticias/kolping-celebra-seu-centenario-no-brasil/