In its 2022 annual report, the Knights of Columbus reinforced the importance of maintaining the “missionary zeal of our forefathers.” This can be done, in part, through their initiative to engage more Hispanic Catholics, a boots-on-the-ground effort that has been implemented throughout the Diocese of Brooklyn.
Every week since March, an army of volunteers and Father Evelio Menjivar, pastor of St. Mary’s Catholic Church in the Washington suburb of Landover Hills, Maryland, gather in the parish’s parking lot to give away boxes of food to local families in need.
In the Diocese of Brooklyn, there are 220 deacons, of which 172 are active, and 48 retired. Ninety-two of the total are of Hispanic origin, which is about 42 percent of the total.
Each presidential election year, the nonprofit Hope Border Institute in El Paso, Texas, has counted on parish halls and other church spaces to register new voters, particularly Latinos, so that their voices and interests can be properly represented.
Hispanic Catholics in the Diocese of Brooklyn and across the country would normally be preparing for the Encuentro, an opportunity to discuss and address how the Church responds to the Hispanic presence and the ways Hispanics respond to the Church in kind.