Catholic Charities of Orange County will host its 24th annual Bishops’ Classic Golf Tournament on Oct. 24 at Arroyo Trabuco Golf Club in Mission Viejo.

Designed by PGA Tour professional Tom Lehman, the 18-hole course sits on a 240-acre golf club and boasts views of the local nature preserve and Trabuco Creek.

Each year, Catholic and non-Catholic community members and businesses gather for a day of golf to support CCOC’s life-giving services.

The tournament is hosted by our diocesan bishops: Bishop Kevin Vann, Bishop Timothy Freyer, Bishop Thanh Thai Nguyen and Bishop Tod Brown.

To Bishop Vann, the Bishops’ Classic serves as a reminder of CCOC’s heritage and connection to the Diocese since its early days.

“This is not only a time of well-deserved recreation and fun for all but serves well to strengthen our commitment to the mission of Catholic Charities here in Orange County,” said Bishop Vann. “It is also a time to thank the Lord for Bishop Johnson, the first Bishop of our Diocese and a social worker himself, and his support of Catholic Charities at the beginning of our Diocese, which has a solid foundation for this vital ministry in our times.”

The Bishops’ Classic was first instituted by Bishop Norman McFarland, second Bishop of the Diocese of Orange, 24 years ago. Bishop McFarland arrived at the young Diocese of Orange in 1987. He was a strong supporter of Catholic Charities of Orange County and an avid golfer. The tournament was established to help raise funds in support of CCOC’s programs assisting the community. Another great supporter of the tournament and frequent player was Bishop Dominic Luong, the first native-born Vietnamese Roman Catholic Bishop in the United States. Bishop Luong was appointed Auxiliary Bishop of the Diocese of Orange in 2003. He was often seen at the green sharing laughs with golfers and supporters of Catholic Charities of Orange County.

Ellen Roy, Executive Director of Catholic Charities of Orange County, its Board of Trustees and staff are extremely grateful for such a supportive Diocese that is receptive to the needs of the community.

“As an organization connected to the Diocese of Orange, we are especially grateful for our bishops, who pour so much time and dedication into fulfilling the ministry of Christ through their spiritual guidance and selfless leadership,” said Roy. “Through our mission to provide help, create hope and serve all, we hope to reflect the servant’s heart of our bishops, doing everything we can by using what is given to us, one person and family at a time.”

Thanks to donor contributions, clergy members can play in the tournament for free.

It is a day for laity to interact with clergy outside of the church setting, and to expose businesses and individuals who may never otherwise come into contact with the clergy to fellowship together in a round of golf.

Those who are not skilled golfers, or perhaps never stepped onto the green, are welcome to participate as well. And those who wish to forgo golf are welcome to join CCOC for cocktail hour, dinner and the awards ceremony. Dinner-Table sponsors sponsorships are also available.

The day will begin with registration, putting contest and driving range. Tee-off is at 12 p.m. (lunch will be served by the St. Martin de Porres Knights of Columbus), followed by a cocktail hour, dinner, auction and awards ceremony. A cash drawing of $1,000 will also be awarded to one lucky winner.

Over the years, community partners have added their own friendly competitions and spins within the Bishops’ Classic. The Providence network hosts its annual tournament within the tournament in which the different local hospitals inside the Providence network engage in friendly competition.

This year, the first-ever high school golf tournament within the tournament will take place. Different from previous years, funds raised at the tournament will directly support the counseling program in diocesan Catholic schools to combat the mounting mental health crisis experienced by our youth.

CCOC is excited for the schools to take a more active presence in this year’s tournament, and the schools and alumni community cannot wait.

“This year’s tournament within the tournament featuring Catholic high schools for the first time ever is not only allowing us at CCOC to expand the tournament but is also giving high school students the opportunity learn about the services that CCOC offers,” said Mater Dei High School alum, Madie Fugate. “This is a wonderful chance to help students explore service opportunities while having fun on the course.”

Fugate has been involved in the Bishops’ Classic tournament for 10 years and is currently working as the Community Engagement & Events Coordinator at CCOC.

“It is my hope that those who participate in the tournament will learn about CCOC, strengthening the relationships between CCOC and the Catholic schools,” she added.

Alicia Sayles, Activities Director at Santa Margarita Catholic High School also expressed her excitement for the upcoming tournament

“It is a wonderful event!” she exclaimed.

In addition to participating in the high school golf tournament, SMHS will be sending student volunteers to help during the morning of the golf tournament to further support the work of CCOC.

Don’t miss out on this special event! To register or become a sponsor for the Bishops’ Classic Golf Tournament, text GOLFOC to 41444 or email [email protected]. Interested attendees/sponsors may also sign up online/access the event page at ccoc.org.