The Roman Catholic Parish of Lady, Star of the Sea, Weymouth, Dorset, UK
Catholic Women’s League
Margaret Fletcher set up the Catholic Women’s League in 1906 for the education of women. The League still offers members the opportunities to develop and learn new skills, and use them for the benefit of the church and especially their local parish. Belonging to CWL is a journey of prayer, faith and friendship.
Our Patron is St Margaret Clitherow, Martyred at York on 25th March 1586, canonised by Pope Paul VI in 1970.
Whether it is providing coffee and biscuits after Mass, helping with catering at other parish events, fundraising for national and local community charities, our parish CWL members show unity in prayer and action.
Interested in joining us? Speak with committee members Frances Woodward (Chairperson) or June Rust (Secretary). You will be welcome!
August was the month for the Section’s Summer Lunch. This year it was at the Wishing Well, Upwey. Everyone enjoyed both the excellent meal and the beautiful gardens.
September meeting welcomed Kelly from Home Start, who was our speaker. One of our members, Julie, is starting training as a volunteer with this organisation. Home Start West Dorset helps families that have at least one child under 5 years old. Help is provided through volunteers to families who need friendship, advice or support through the early years of parenting.
At our September meeting members also chose 5 charities to receive £200 each from our funds: Samaritans, Street Pastors, Medaille Trust, Good Counsel Network and Soul Food. A donation of £500 was sent to the SVP’s Kerala Fund to help those caught up in the floods in this area of India.
On October 4th, a group of Weymouth members attended the Half Day Recollection at the Church of St Mary and St Catherine, Bridport. Canon Richard talked about his lifelong fascination with St Therese of the Child Jesus, who served God in little ways and proclaimed the unchanging and passionate love of God. The Canon summed up by saying, "You cannot do anything that will make God love you less". Following tea and cakes, each CWL Section gave short reports on the year’s activities. The sections comprise the following: Branksome and Parkstone; Dorchester; Wareham, Wool and Lulworth; Weymouth; Bridport, Beaminster and Chideock.
We didn’t have a speaker this month at our October meeting but we had extra time to chat, while enjoying tea, coffee and Margaret Cobbold’s delicious cakes! The members were saddened by losing Joanna Moran to the USA; our loss and their gain. There was many a fond farewell.
The June Ecumenical Cream Tea was attended by over 80 people from local churches and was thoroughly enjoyed. Attendees appreciated the entertainment provided by CWL members and joined in a sing-song finale.
Some of our members will be attending the Holy Trinity Cream Team in Weymouth and the Dorchester CWL Cream Tea later this month; putting on the pounds!
During June Section members sold raffle tickets before and after Mass for the Parish Fete held at the end of the month. The raffle realised over £800 towards Fete funds.
The annual Healing Mass will take place on Saturday 28th July. As well as the healing power of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, Father Stephen will administer the Sacrament for the Sick. Catering after Mass will be in the form of a buffet rather than the usual meal provided by CWL.
At the July meeting Julie Powell, WUCWO representative, led a Pro-life discussion affirming the right to life of the unborn. This month £200 has been sent from the CWL Prolife Stall to help the mums and babies at the Bath LIFE House. The stall supports annually not only Bath LIFE House but also contributes to the parish collection on the annual Day for Life and sends a donation to Jean Varnier's L'Arche UK; creating a world where we all belong.
Members agreed to selling raffle tickets for the Parish Summer Fete to be held on Saturday 30th June. Also they agreed for a donation of £200 to be awarded to parishioner Marie Keane, who will be doing a sky-dive to raise funds for Julia's House Children's Hospice. Marie was treasurer for Weymouth Section CWL a few years ago.
After the General Meeting we participated in a WUCWO Service. This is an annual event, usually celebrated on the feast of Our Lady of Fatima, 13th May. The hymns, prayers and intercessions had been prepared by Asia Pacific Region with contributions from Australia, Lebanon and the Philippines. The themes were Justice, Freedom and Peace. The Gospel story of the Samaritan woman at the well was dramatised. One of the intercessions was, "For the WUCWO General Assembly at Dakar, that through our preparation and dialogue we may be living water to all who thirst for meaning and purpose in their lives".
Next month our members welcome ladies from other local churches to our annual Ecumenical Cream Tea with home-grown entertainment!
At the April meeting members heard that £462.11 had been made on Lenten Lunches and this would be given to the local food for the homeless project with which parishioners are involved. Also members voted to send a £50 donation for the bus for the homeless at present parked at Lodmoor.
Members learned that the Catholic charity The Medaille Trust , which benefited from Lenten Lunch proceeds in 2017, now has a new CEO from the Salvation Army. As a consequence the two organisations will work more closely together providing safe accommodation for people rescued from trafficking.
Section representatives will attend the Dorset Branch AGM at Dorchester on Saturday 21st April. On the following morning members will be manning the Section's annual Coffee Morning and Cake Sale after 8am and 10am Masses in St Joseph's Hall. The Buckfast Pilgrimage is another annual event and again certain members will represent our Section on Wednesday 30th May.
Our speaker this month was Sister Mary of the Convent of Mercy. She updated members on the Addo Project in South Africa where one Marist priest covers 4 parishes. 3 Mercy sisters went out to Addo in 2006 to be "a praying presence". They were pro-active too in teaching children English, Maths and IT in farm schools. They provided a crèche while the parents worked on the farms from May to October picking citrus fruit. During the non-picking months alternative employment has to be found to keep their families. A sewing scheme for the women has been set up. They make school uniform and tote bags to sell. This ensures that the women have money in hand to spend on necessities for their children.
The Marist Fathers run 6 private schools in the Durban area and these provide 20-30 young adult volunteers to attend "Summer School" in Addo. As "summer" is Christmas in South Africa, they bring Christmas boxes with them. The "haves" helping others who have so little.
The Chairperson, Fran Woodward, thanked Sister for an excellent presentation.
The CWL Weymouth Section Annual General Meeting this month resulted in the re-election into office of Fran Woodward (Chairperson), Monica Garlick (Treasurer) and June Rust (Secretary). The support committee members elected were as follows: Marguerite Mauger, Margaret Martin, Joyce Fannon, Esmee Nichols and Julie Powell (WUCWO representative).
Monica submitted the accounts which had been done at headquarters for the first time under the new Constitution. June reported on a very busy but successful twelve months for the Section. The 2018 calendar is equally full. At the beginning of Holy Week the Section is involved in the preparation for the Passover Meal.
The next meeting is on April 10th at 2pm. Sister Mary from the Convent of Mercy is the speaker.
June Rust has organised the parish Lenten Lunches and Janet Newington had organised the Stations of the Cross which proceeds the lunches. The members chose The Hungry and Homeless in Weymouth as the Lenten Lunches charity. In addition, a donation of £100 was given to the Chaplain of the Young Offenders Institution and Detention Centre.
The Annual Buckfast Pilgrimage is on Wednesday 30th May and the cost of the coach seat is £13, which is to be paid by 30th April. April 21st is the date of the CWL Branch Annual General Meeting. This will take place at Holy Trinity Parish Centre, Dorchester. The Weymouth Section AGM is on Tuesday 20th March at 2pm in St Joseph's parish hall.
The February meeting ended with a Power Point presentation on The Work of Caritas that functions in the realm of social justice. This was given by Monica Garlick. Fran Woodward thanked Monica for an informative presentation.
The members thanked June Rust for organising the very enjoyable meal at the Spa Hotel in early January. June reported on the Founder’s day Event at Branksome, which she attended as Weymouth Section representative. Frances Woodward had represented the Section at the beautiful Wool and Wareham Carol Service. Julie Powell as the new WUCWO representative reported on the content of the recent WUCWO magazine.
The 2018 Events Calendar was handed out to members and 2018 promises to be a very busy year. Paddy Thoyts gave a presentation on Trafficking in Albania and the work of RENATE. Joyce Fannon added details of the Catholic UK Agency The Medaille Trust, which is the largest provider of safe housing for people rescued from trafficking in this country. They have 9 safe houses and have helped over 1,000 people.
The next meeting is on Tuesday February 13th at 1pm when our speaker is Monica Garlick on the Work of Caritas.
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