2016 Annual Report – New Brunswick
Marie C. Rackley
New Brunswick Provincial Council President
2016 Annual Report
I am honoured to be president of New Brunswick Provincial Council and part of an organization with such a dynamic group of ladies who believe in Christian values, social justice, dignity of life and service to others.
It was a rewarding experience for me as I read the 2016 annual re-ports for each chairperson and diocesan president. They confirmed that the League is strong in this province. Although membership numbers did not meet expectations, members reached out and achieved many goals within local communities. The gifts shared with others were countless. Members provided spiritual growth, leadership development, community service and worked for justice in the world. These actions were reflected daily in the theme, One Heart, One Voice, One Mission: Palliative and Hospice Care.
As a provincial president, I served at the national level by representing the provincial council. This gave me the opportunity to bring members’ questions and concerns forward for discussion with my provincial colleagues at round table sessions. The information I received was shared upon my return with the provincial executive and life members through communiqué.
The year 2016 was a year of change with the implementation of online annual reporting. I was excited and overwhelmed to see the results received from national office. Thank you to the parish councils that took the challenge and stepped out in faith. Working together as a team, members achieved many goals. I have shared some of the statistical results at the end of this report.
There were times when I suffered from information overload. I was so thankful to be able to pick up the telephone, send an e-mail or call upon my pillar, New Brunswick Provincial Past President Marg McCallum. Working with a leader who gives of her time and shares her knowledge strengthens one’s ability to do her duties. The road trips enriched my spiritual journey while meeting and sharing with League sisters, as one of my priorities was to have fun.
With the new online reporting system, 33 out of 46 parish councils reported. Presidents reported that information was shared with members through The Canadian League magazine (93%), national communiqués (72%), national website (54%) and through diocesan newsletters (49%). The current issues discussed and acted upon by councils were palliative care (94%), medical assistance in dying (78%), pornography (60%) and the refugee crisis (56%). Most presidents reported that time was set aside at council meetings to dis-cuss or take action on Canada’s food guide, care for seniors, parish concerns, proper burial of unborn human remains and study of missing and murdered aboriginal women.
Presidents indicated that spiritual advisors participated in general meetings rarely (42%), annually (18%), every other meeting (15%) and every meeting (12%), although they did also report that spiritual advisors were very supportive of the League.
Most parish councils held monthly meetings, except in the summer, while a few held meetings every other month or when needed. The majority of presidents were busy with League events including diocesan conventions, special masses, provincial convention, work-shops and fundraising events. Council subsidies for presidents to attend these events were provided: diocesan conventions (90%), special masses (82%), provincial conventions (67%), workshops (63%) and fundraising events (57%).
Fifty-seven percent of councils indicated they had their own copy of the National Manual of Policy and Procedure and 54% presented the manual to the membership for review on a yearly basis. All parish council presidents had read the Executive Handbook and found that it assisted them in overseeing the operation of their councils.
Presidents informed their executive and council members of activities via telephone (used most frequently), mail and e-mail. A summary of council activities was provided via oral report at annual meetings (73%) or a written report (33%). CWL letterhead was used by 52% of councils. Most councils found it beneficial to have a national theme or logo.
My prayer for each of you is that you open your heart to the voice of the Lord, letting the spirit live and move within you. We are united as one League standing together “For God and Canada.” May Our Lady of Good Counsel protect and guide you on your journey.