The Roman Catholic Parish of Lady, Star of the Sea, Weymouth, Dorset, UK

Catholic Women’s League 2015

About the 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.

Generally ...

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 Monica Garlick (Chairperson) or June Rust (Secretary). You will be welcome!


News December 2015

Our December Social proved a success. We welcomed members of Dorchester Section as our guests. One parishioner joined us too; we had expected more. After a birthday presentation of flowers and chocolates to our long-serving Secretary, June Rust, the home-grown entertainment was provided by Weymouth members Diane Thorne, Suzanne Newson, Paddy Thoyts and Joyce Fannon. Their efforts were much appreciated by the audience, as was the excellent buffet that followed. It proved to be a relaxing pre-Christmas treat.

There were items available at the Social from the CWL Pro-life Stall which is fielded on the second Sunday in each month after the Sunday morning Masses. On the closure of the Weymouth and District LIFE Group in June of this year the CWL Weymouth Section provided an umbrella under which the former LIFE Stall could continue. So far this year the CWL Stall has given £120 to the Catholic Bishops of England and Wales' annual parish collection for the Anscombe Bioethics Centre and £200 was given to LIFE Housing in November to support the mums and babies at the Bournemouth LIFE Flats as Christmas approached. A further £30 is in hand to contribute to the costs of the Precious Memories Gathering at St Mary’s to be held in Spring 2016. This used to be a Weymouth and District LIFE Group initiative but the lead is now being taken by the C of E Mothers’ Union. Our contribution will make this a more ecumenical venture.

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News November 2015

We end November covering the Bric-a-brac stall and manning the kitchen at the parish Christmas Bazaar on Saturday November 28th; helpers will need to be there at 11am. Our bakers have volunteered some cakes for the cake stall.

Representatives are attending the Dorchester CWL Social on November 24th and the CWL Wool/Wareham Carol Service and Social on Tuesday 1st December. Others are going to CWL Founder's Day at Branksome on 3rd December.

Our own annual CWL Weymouth Social is on Tuesday 8th December at 2pm. We are hoping that ladies of the parish might join us for food and home-grown entertainment!

Some of our members will be covering the kitchen after the Parish Carol Service in December serving mulled wine and mince-pies. Then we have a well-earned break before our January General Meeting.

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News October 2015

October was a busy month with the Branch Half Day of Recollection and Branch Meeting, as well as our usual monthly Section Meeting. Father Richard was spiritually uplifting at the first event and Sister Jackie equally so at the second.

At the Branch meeting it was revealed that there are proposed changes to the Catholic Women’s League Constitution. As a result of this there will be a Section Extraordinary Meeting on Tuesday November 3rd at 1pm in St Joseph’s Hall.At this meeting we will see a DVD presentation on the initial proposals of changes to the Constitution, followed by reports as to further developments from our three delegates to the forthcoming National CWL AGM at Torquay. Based on all of this evidence, there will be small group discussion of any issues before we leave to consider the merits of the proposals as individual members. Each individual CWL member has a right and duty to cast their vote in January 2016.

A week later we hold our usual monthly Section Committee meeting at 12.30pm in the Hall prior to our Section General Meeting at 2pm. This is followed by a presentation at 3pm by our Spiritual Director, Father Stephen. This is on Tuesday 10th November.

The Parish Healing Mass, organised by the CWL, is on Saturday 14th November at 11am. Members setting up the Hall for the two course meal that follows the Mass must be there at 9am. At the Mass the Kyrie and the Agnus Dei will be sung as part of our Section policy of promoting a dementia-friendly Church.

So a very busy month for all of us yet again!

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News September 2015

At the Section September Meeting members noted that our CWL Rota Mass is on Wednesday 16th September at 10am at St Joseph’s. Members were urged to attend. Each CWL Section opts for an annual Mass, so that one is offered every day of the year somewhere on the planet!

We are hosting the CWL Branch Half Day of Recollection at St Joseph’s on Tuesday 6th October at 2pm. It will be led by Father Richard from Bridport, our Branch Spiritual Director. A Branch meeting follows our reflective time in church. Then we indulge finally in tea/coffee, homemade cakes and socialising.

Three of our members, Monica, Marguerite and Janet, will be representing our Section at CWL National AGM to be held in Torquay, October 16-18th.

We were pleased to welcome Anne Bowen as our speaker at our September Meeting. Anne gave us details of the history of the Nest of Hope, based in Sao Paulo, under the aegis of St Patrick's Missionary Society and in the capable hands of Father Eddie. It was a fascinating story of how street children have been rescued and given new homes before they can go “feral” and be lost to gang culture in the favellas. Janet Newington thanked Anne for a fascinating insight into this important missionary work, which our Section will actively support this year.

Our next Section Meeting is on Tuesday, October 13th at 2pm

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News July 2015

CWL National sent through information that a private member's Bill to legalise Assisted Suicide will be debated in the Commons on 11th September. 2015. We are asked to access information on the Bishops' Conference website and on the Anscombe Bioethics Centre website . The Anscombe Centre website gives 8 reasons against the Bill, quoting useful statistics. Armed with this information, please then write to our local MP, Richard Drax, at House of Commons, St Margaret's St, London SW1A OAA. Alternatively email him at the following eamil address:

Forthcoming Section events include a Tabletop Sale in the Stavordale Road Hall at 10.30am on Saturday 18th July. Everyone welcome to browse and buy from the bric a brac, toy, plant and cake stalls. Tea and coffee are provided.

On Friday 31st July there is a CWL Recruitment Wine and Cheese party in the Stavordale Road Hall at 7pm. Invitations will be handed out to parishioners who for various reasons cannot attend our afternoon meetings. Younger ladies in the parish might find evening CWL meetings more in line with a career and family.

The Section's Summer Meal Out is at Gould's Garden Centre on 11th August at midday.

The Section will be covering a morning and afternoon session at a Carnival Stall on the seafront on the 19th August, selling official programmes and raffle tickets.

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News June 2015

June and July are lining up as busy months for Weymouth Section CWL. On June 17th members will be heading for the Lulworth Castle Mass and Picnic at 6.30pm. On June 20th members will be selling raffle tickets, helping with catering and manning stalls at the Parish Summer Fete held at the Convent of Mercy.

Saturday July 18th at 10.30am is the date and time of our CWL Table Top Sale in the Church Hall at Stavordale Road. There will be Cake, Plant and Bric a Brac Stalls. On July 31st at 7pm our Section is holding a Cheese and Wine Recruitment Evening in the Church Hall. We are inviting potential new members to form an evening group. Currently our meetings are held during the day, when some parishioners are unable to attend.

This month we held a very successful Ecumenical Cream Tea which 50 ladies attending. It is good to get together in a social context. We were entertained by Daphne Pont who gave a lively account on “Salt”; fascinating stuff!

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News May 2015

At the May Meeting final arrangements were made for attending the annual Buckfast Pilgrimage. In addition plans were put in place for the annual Ecumenical Cream Tea in June. Also members put up their hands for selling Summer Fete Raffle tickets prior to the Parish Fete to be held on the 20th June.

A Spiritual Bouquet is to be given to Emeritus Bishop of Middlesbrough, John Crowley, who was former Spiritual Director of CWL. Members will be saying a Rosary for his intentions as part of this National CWL Spiritual Bouquet.

Members were very pleased to hear that CWL has given £10,000 to Water Aid for the Nepal Appeal.

Our guest speaker was Elizabeth Wood of the C of E Mothers’ Union. She was talking on the Mothers’ Union Bye Buy Childhood Campaign of 2010 that challenged our society's commercialisation and sexualisation of children. Subsequently the Government commissioned MU CEO, Reg Bailey, to carry out an independent review. Although some action was taken by Parliament, industry and regulators, much more needs to be done.

The recent Bye Buy Childhood 2015 Report presents research findings and new recommendations. To find out more consult byebuychildhood. The website gives details on how to procure a Resource Pack and an excellent booklet, Labelled for Life. Managing the commercial world as a family. This will prove of interest to parents, grandparents and even great grandparents!

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News April 2015

Members at the April meeting were pleased that the Passover Meal (organised by CWL) had been a success. The CWL Coffee Morning had also raised awareness of the Section through a raffle, cake sales and a presentation at the 8 o’clock Mass.

Several members will be attending the Dorset Branch AGM at Dorchester this month.

More information had been sent to the Section from National on suggestions for The Way Forward 2015. As numbers fall, members are asked to consider implementing some new ideas. Handouts outlining some of the suggestions were taken on for perusal.

A presentation on St Augustine's School, Hardy Avenue was given by member Joyce Fannon, using the words of “The History Detectives”. These were a group of six pupils at the school (year 3 and Year 4) who had researched the history behind the opening of their school fifty years ago.

As usual tea/coffee and homemade cakes were enjoyed by all!

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News March 2015

Weymouth Section Section CWL had its AGM in the parish hall on 10th March, 2015. Fifteen members attended and our guest was Sheila Watkins from Dorset Branch.

Reports were given by the Chairperson, Treasurer, Secretary and Liaison Officer. Chairperson Monica Garlick reported that it had been a particularly busy 12 months, especially with the Parish Mission taking place in 2014; she thanked the section members for all their support.

The 2015 officers were elected: Chairperson, Monica Garlick; Secretary, June Rust; Treasurer, Paddy Thoyts; Liaison, Joyce Fannon. Committee members elected: Marguerite Mauger, Janet Newington, Margaret Martin, Margaret Stephenson and Diane Thorne.

Flowers were presented to retiring Treasurer, Mary Williams and to June Rust. June is recovering successfully from surgery. Myra Rich is retiring from the Section, after playing such a key role in CWL over a great many years. She was presented with gifts from the Section and there was a rousing rendition of “For she’s a jolly good fellow” from her fellow members.

Sheila Watkins from Branch gave her address. She pointed out that there had been a steady decline in CWL numbers over the years, quoting figures from 1931 through to 2014. The Way Forward is a current CWL 3-Year Plan aiming to counter this decline.

Father Stephen, our Spiritual Director, thanked the Section members for all the support they gave to the Parish. He highlighted the cultural changes that have occurred over the years, resulting in our present largely secular society and the challenges it poses.

Then the meeting focussed on forthcoming events involving CWL members in our Parish: the Passover Meal, 30th March, National Coffee Morning 22nd March and a reminder of the the forthcoming Buckfast Pilgrimage. Mention was made too of the LIFE Group's Precious Memories Gathering held March 22nd at 2pm at St Mary's Church; two CWL members were featuring as readers at this event.

The meeting closed, as it had begun, with prayers.

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News January 2015

At our Section’s January meeting we were already looking ahead to March commitments! Friday 20th March will see the start of Lenten Lunches and the Passover Meal will feature on Monday 30th March. Between these two events is the CWL National Raising Awareness Sunday on 22nd March with its attendant coffee morning. National want a cup-count of coffees, teas and squash to be sent up to them by March 31st; it all becomes a competition between the various UK sections!

At our meeting we looked at the results of our Skills Audit which provides a snap-shot of current abilities within our Section. At our February meeeting we will be looking at posible recommendations, in the light of the audit findings. Each year membership changes and the skills of new members often do not reflect the skills of out-going members; our overall situation changes. We need to plan for the way forward. In March we hold our AGM when officers are elected. Mary Williams, our treasurer will be leaving us. We are very grateful for all her sterling work on our behalf. A job well done, Mary! A replacement is needed for the Section to continue.

Meanwhile, seventeen of us look forward to our “Christmas Meal Out” at the end of this month at the Beefeater Café. June Rust, our Secretary, has organised this; just one of the many things she does for us.

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