The Origin

The International Kolping Society (IKS) is a Catholic Organization. It was founded in Germany in the middle of the 19th century by a Catholic Priest, Adolf Kolping, under the name of “Catholic Journeymen’s Association”.

Adolf Kolping’s aim was to participate in finding solutions to the urgent social problems caused by the Industrial Revolution. One of them was the situation of young craftsmen and journeymen, who lacked both social recognition and moral guidance. Through their organization and the encouragement of practical self-help and structures of solidarity, the Kolping Society made an important contribution to the integration of craftsmen into society.

Adolf Kolping himself wanted the Catholic Journeymen’s Association to spread into other countries. Before he died in 1865, there were Kolping Families in countries life Austria, Switzerland, Hungary and even in North America. Fr. Adolf Kolping was beatified in Rome by Pople John Paul II on October 27, 1991.

Today, the former Catholic Journeymen’s Association has grown into an international organization with about 400,000 members in more than 60 countries worldwide. The membership comprises individuals of all professions and ages. The local groups are called the Kolping Families.