The journey of the silver rose begins each year in March and ends on Dec. 12, the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. During that time, Silver Roses travel from town to town along eight routes throughout North America. Several of those routes begin in Canada and end in Mexico. One route ends in Washington, D.C., and another ends at St. Mary’s Church in New Haven, CT, where the Knights of Columbus was founded.
The Silver Rose Program began in 1960, when the first rose – areal, live one – was blessed by a bishop in Ontario. The rose then traveled to New York and then to Texas where it was taken across the border into Mexico. The rose ended its pilgrimage at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Monterrey on Dec. 12, the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. To better ensure future annual trips, a silver rose was ultimately made. Today, due to the popularity of the program throughout the North American continent, eight silver roses travel unique routes.
In 2001, when Carl Anderson, Supreme Knight of the Knights of Columbus, expanded the Silver Rose Program, he commented: “Through [the Silver Rose Program] we honor not only Our Lady of Guadalupe and express the unity of the [Knights of Columbus], but we also reaffirm the Order’s dedication to the sanctity of human life. It is to the Blessed Mother that we turn in prayer as we work to end the Culture of Death that grips our society. As we think in terms of ‘One Life, One Rose,’ it is most appropriate that we turn to Our Lady of Guadalupe who made known her will through Juan Diego and the miracle of the roses.”