institute, a Catholic Women's organization
was founded in San Francisco, California,
on September 5, 1887, by three ladies -
Emily Coogan, Mary Richardson and Annie
Sweeney. They realized there was a need
for an organization to help young women
alone in the city who might be victims of
health and/or sisterly love, unity and
mainly in the greater San Francisco area.
It gradually spread to the entire West
Coast. There are presently 115 institutes
in three Pacific Coast states and Hawaii.
YLI has been part of the National Council
of Catholic Women since its founding in
program was established in 1925. There are
two scholarships at junior college level
in the Health Sciences; two scholarships
at the senior college level in Health
Sciences, Liberal Arts and a fellowship
for graduate study beyond B.A. or B.S.
involved in social justice issues in 1909.
We campaigned for an eight hour working
day for women and also for Child Labor
Laws. The original purpose of helping
women in need has continued. YLI members
were generous in relief efforts toward
sister members after the San Francisco
earthquakes of 1906 and 1989. The war
years found members working with War
Bonds, Red Cross donor drives and as
USO hostesses. Some enlisted in the
various branches of the Armed Services.
Works of charity have been worldwide. Each
year the Grand President designates a
particular charity for all members to work
for and with.
In 1937, our 50th
anniversary, YLI established the
Golden Jubilee Burse to assist in the
education of students for the priesthood.
Since then over one million dollars has
been raised and given to the Archbishops
were there are YLI Institutes. For our
diamond jubilee, YLI provided funds
for the altar railing in the Shrine of the
Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C.
In 1987, the centennial of YLI, a bronze
sculpture of the Assumption of the Blessed
Virgin Mary was placed in St. Mary's
Cathedral in San Francisco.
YLI has continued
to flourish because the founders, and
those who followed in service of Grand
Institutes, knew we have an important duty
to serve our church, country, community
and one another. Their foresightedness,
determination and love of the Order are an
example for all.