On 6th March 2012, fifteen of the sixteen current members of Catholic Women’s League Australia, Diocese of Wollongong, Campbelltrown Branch celebrated the fiftieth anniversary of the inaugrural meeting of the league held in Camlbelltown on 6th March, 1962. The League has had an unbroken presence in Campbelltown ever since this date through the devoted efforts of many past members.
Seventy – four guests gathered to mark this wonderful occassion. Numbered amoung them were special guests State President, Carolyn Metcalfe; Diocesan President, Sue Freestone; Campbelltown Mayor, Cr Analouk Chanthivong; our Parish Pastor, Fr Michael Healy and Past Chaplain of the League, Rev. Christopher Sarkis. We felt gratefully honoured to note amoung our guests original members, namely, Dorothy McAuliffe (original vice – president and past diocesan and branch president over many years.); Marjorie Ellich (past diocesan secretary and branch execxutive for a number of terms); Mary Davies (original branch treasurer) and Anne Sullivan. They certainly enjoyed each other’s company and reminiscences. Dorothy and Marjorie have an unbroken membership of our branch from 1962 till today. These two ladies together with member Roseleen Goldie have been granted Life Membership of the League.
Following our Vice – President’s welcome to the celebration which took place at the Campbelltown Catholic Club, the Mayor welcomed visitors from other areas, to the City of Campbelltown and thanked the League for their contribution to the community of Campbelltown over so many years. Rev Fr Micheal Healy led us in Grace and reflected on his association with the past and present members during his two terms serving the parish of St. John the Evangelist, Campbelltown.
During a delicious 2 course meal a power point presentation of photos and memorabilia helped to capture the people and activities of the past 50 years. The State President proposed a toast to Catholic Women’s League, Australia and our four original members cut the celebration cake which was enjoyed with tea and coffee.
Anne Sullivan, Marjorie Ellich, Dorothy McAuliffe Mary Davies.
A stirring tribute was paid to the branch members who had died. Their names were listed via a power point presentation accompanied by the song : “You Raise Me Up”
The branch members wish to thank most sincerely the Campbelltown Catholic Club and their staff members for their hospitality and generous donation to our raffle. League members from Albion Park, Bowral, Dapto, Fairy Meadow, Thirroul, West Wollongong and Wollongong branches enriched our celebration by their attendance as well as previous members from the now closed Ingleburn branch. Special thanks are due to many members for their ideas and tireless efforts to ensure the success of the celebration and to Graeme Goldie, husband of Roseleen, for sharing his power point skills with us to enhance the celebration.
All present were delighted when Bishop Peter Ingham honoured us witrh a visit after attending a function elsewhere in the club. The formalities conclude with the sharing of the League’s Prayer of Dedication and everyone took home a copy of our branch history prepared by branch members. A most successful day was enjoyed by all.
Report written by Norma McNally; Campbelltown branch member.