Chairperson: Sonya Russell 028 9269 2613 Secretary: Norma Shields 028 9209 2977 Treasurer: Linda McNeill
All ladies in the congregation are welcome.
Visitors' Night 24th May 2018 Guest Speaker: Drew McWilliams
Women's League Outing to Sentry Hill 15th April 2018
Norma, Jean & Sonya made a presentation Ruby.
At our meeting in November 2017 we welcomed Ruby Hamilton who gave a very interesting talk about the work of Blythswood Care.
Blythswood Care was started in 1966 by Rev Jackie Ross in Glasgow and since then has combined the Christian message with practical help for those in need. Whether through filled shoeboxes at Christmas, relief and development aid or social projects for young and old, Blythswood brings hope to thousands in Europe, Africa and Asia. Blythswood is committed to long-term care projects in Romania, enabling disadvantaged children and young people fulfil their potential. Over the years links have been established with local churches and it is through these links that the shoeboxes are distributed.
Ruby’s link with the organisation began when Gilford & Tullylish Presbyterian Churches got involved in collecting clothes and goods for Eastern European countries. This led to setting up a collection point in a container in Banbridge, then the opening of shops and how there are eight shops in NI.
Every year Jean McIlroy organises the collection of Christmas shoeboxes from church members and the local scout group also contributes. Approximately 100 boxes were handed over to Blytheswood this year. In her presentation, Ruby showed us children and adults receiving shoeboxes and she has been able to visit some of the countries and actually hand out the boxes.
Last year 121,000 boxes were distributed and since Blythswood started collecting shoeboxes, two million boxes have been distributed in Eastern European countries. For many of the children who receive the boxes it will be the only Christmas gift they receive and maybe the only gift they receive during the year. Every shoebox is checked by volunteers before they are transported abroad and Christian Literature in the language of the country is included in each box.
Charity for the year Each year the Ulster District choses a charity to support and for 2017-2018 it is Diabetes NI.
The Ulster District of the Women's League was formed in 1927 with the following aims:
To quicken the religious life of our churches and bring other Liberal Christian women into closer co-operation and fellowship.
To promote the formation of branches in connection with the churches
To suggest ways and means of providing for the needs and extending the influence of such churches and to collect and spead amongst the members information of liberal religious interest.
90th Dedication Ceremony
At the Ulster District Quarterly Meeting in January 2017 the members present made the following commitment. They pledged themselves:
To remain faithful to the ideal of hospitality which welcome all who wish to join us - as members, friends, visitor or guests.
To remain faithful to the ideal of charitable giving to many different causes which support those in need.
To support through prayer and or practical help any of our members who is in any kind of need.
As a gathering of Liberal Christian women to the ideal of freedom of women to express themselves and their needs with our judgement, censure or persecution.
To continue to support in whatever way we can the future of our Women's League and never to forget the witness of former generations who have gone before us and helped make our Women's League a beacon of light in our churches, community, our world.
Display about history of the Women's League.
Quarterly Meeting in Dromore June 2017
On Saturday 17th June 2017 the Quarterly Meeting of the Women’s League was held in our church. Sonya Russell, welcomed everyone and a special welcome was given to Rev Linda Ballard, who was the guest speaker, and Rev Colin Campbell, newly elected Moderator of Non-Subscribing Church. Norma Shields read the lesson and Julie Black was the organist. Rev Ballard gave a very interesting address on the role of female Non-Subscribers in 19th century. Jean McElroy had arranged beautiful flowers for the Communion Table and also floral gifts for Rev Ballard and Julie.
After the service all retired to the Ervine Hall for afternoon tea. The hall was beautifully set out with china tea sets, cake stands, embroidered tablecloths, lovely table decoration, again by Jean McElroy, and, of course, 90th Birthday balloons to mark the 90th Anniversary year of the Women’s League. A beautiful cake was provided by the President, Mrs Elizabeth Moore. Following a lovely tea, the business meeting took place and a cheque for £5000 was presented to a Claire O’Hanlon from Muscular Dystrophy(NI). Claire thanked the League for the donation and explained how the disease had affected one of her children.
Sonya and Norma with Women's League President, Elizabeth Moore.
Enjoying Afternoon Tea in Ervine Memorial Service
Rev Linda Ballard with Sonya
Enjoying Afternoon Tea in Ervine Memorial Service
Enjoying the sunshine before the service.
Cheque presentation to Claire O’Hanlon from Muscular Dystrophy(NI)