The National Presidents Blog

National Presidents Blog linked to CWL latest Newsletter


Blog 14 5 September 2018

The next few pictures were taken at the Ladyewell Shrine on Saturday where again I joined the ladies of Lancaster Branch for a days retreat. Mass was celebrated by three fantastic priests , lunch followed by rosary and benediction . I received a wonderful welcome

and was awarded a certificate for attending the shrine, the priest is a visiting priest to Ladyewell from Rome.

Spent a lovely day with the members of Westminster Branch on a retreat at the Rosary Shrine at St Dominic’s Priory London

Blog 13 22 May 2018

I visited Crewe Section Monday/ Tuesday a fairly new section, they are so active and eager . The photo attached was taken against the back ground of all flags of the different nationalities that worship in the parish a wonderful display of red roses were around the church for the feast of Pentecost .The Bidding Prayers again were said in their own languages. The
Parish Priest is very supportive of the League and while at the meeting new ladies had come along to hear what we do, and they are coming back.


Blog 12 23 April 2018

National President – Margaret Valentine writes – Have spent a lovely weekend with Dorset Branch a wonderful evening spent with Carol & John a great meal Thank you. And of course a superb lunch and excellent meeting. A long journey but certainly worth it to meet a wonderful set of ladies. Must return even just to sample their cream teas.

Blog 11 30 January 2018

The members of St Robert’s Morpeth Section celebrated Burns Night Yesterday evening. The Haggis was piped in, and the Chairman then addressed the Haggis and stabbed the Haggis several times, it was then served up with tatties and neeps and washed down with a wee dram. The tables were cleared and the dancing started .  A good night was had by all.

Blog 10 26 January 2018

I attended the Holocaust Memorial Day Service which was held in St Mary’s Catholic School in Newcastle on Tuesday Evening. It was one of the most moving services that I have been too. The speaker was Mr Simon Wallfisch he is
an opera singer and cellist. He told us the history of his Grandmother who was arrested and sent to Auschwitz-Birkenau , she was recruited as the cellist in the women’s orchestra and was therefore not sent to the gas chamber. She is still alive aged 92.It was a very emotional evening. Her grandson then played his cello and sang “The Kaddish” . We then all said a prayer for Universal Peace .” Do with it what thou wilt “.


Happy New Year 2018

Blog 9 11 December 2017

Here is a link to our CWL CIO Christmas message for all for 2017.


Advent message from CWL CIO National President Margaret Valentine
The birth of Christ fills us with hope and joy – the joy that his blessed Mother Mary shares with us and the hope that her child brings into our hearts; for God himself has chosen each one of us to be part of His family.
As we do our Christmas shopping we know that we cannot just buy Christmas off the shelf – the best things need patient preparation and not just the Christmas puddings!
It is the lovely season of Advent that makes Christmas worth waiting for.
As we light the Advent candles one by one our hearts are quietly stirred into greater awareness of all that God does for us – so that we can thoroughly enjoy Christmas day when it arrives.
I wish each of you a calm and reflective Advent – and of course a truly merry Christmas.
God bless you all for all that you do in the name of the Catholic Women’s League.
National President


Blog 8 4 December 2017

National President Margaret Valentine had a busy day for the First Sunday of Advent 2.00 p.m. Service at Morpeth attended by the Lady Mayoress and then on to St Dominic’s Newcastle for 4.00 p.m. Advent service and several mince pies.


Blog 7 20 November 2017

Westminster Abbey evensong to celebrate 100 Oscar Romero – Who is wearing the biggest medal!

On the 23rd September Jean Clarke (National Secretary) and I were invited to Evensong to Commemorate
the Centenary of the birth of Blessed Oscar Romero in Westminster Abbey. We were certainly treated as VIP’s , sitting in the Choir Stalls.  A very moving service the music was wonderful as was the address by the Reverend Ronan Williams, along with our own Cardinal Vincent Nichols.

AGM Weekend 13 – 15 October

We have received good feedback from the members regarding the AGM held at Swanwick.  Sister Imelda gave a very good report on the work that she carries out to help girls who are being trafficked around the world. The AGM went well,
and as I stressed to the members we must be looking at new younger members, when I saw the enthusiasm in the young women from Brentwood and Westminster it gave me hope. The visit to the National Arboretum was well received. On the
Sunday morning we had Phil McCarthy from Caritas to tell us more about my project in helping Syrian families to be resettled in this country. Mass on the Sunday morning was celebrated by Bishop Peter, the entertainment as usual was a
great success.  Just a few photos for now – See the AGM report and photos post for more detail!


Blog 6 11 September 2017

On Saturday 9 September National President Margaret Valentine joined Hexham and Newcastle Branch on their annual prayer walk in Morpeth. We walked along the river and stopped at different spots to pray for our priests, the elderly and lonely, the young, the sick and those who had been recently bereaved. Here are some pictures during our walk

Blog 5 August 2017

26 August 2017 – National President Margaret Valentine – visits Lancaster Branch pilgrimage to Ladyewell Shrine
Lancaster’s Annual Pilgrimage to Ladyewell Shrine
What a wonderful day. It started at 4.30am out by 5.45 and on my way to the Ladyewell Shrine in the Diocese of Lancaster.
Mass was held in the magnificent church of St Mary, and after mass a silent procession down a country lane so near the M6 , but it was so peaceful. We recited the rosary in silence.
We arrived at the shrine and made our way to the statue of St Margaret Clitherow to say the league prayers. We all had lunch and then prepared for benediction and a talk by one of the resident Nigerian priests,which was most illuminating.
A cup of tea & then my journey home. A wonderful day!

Blog 4 March 2017

9th March Extraordinary General Meeting of the League held at Westminster Cathedral Hall – to agree our new constitution. What a fantastic turn our of over 100 members who voted unanimously for the new constitution which will come into being in 2018. A momentous day for the League and well done to all who attended.  A special thanks to our guests Gordon Reid our charity lawyer and Matt our accountant for attending and guiding us through the meeting.

Members attending – what a great turnout!

Gordon Reid our charity lawyer explaining the process

Matt our accountant in attendance with National President and National Secretary

Blog 3 February 2017

On the 25th Feb I was privileged to be invited to Westminster Cathedral for Mass celebrated by Cardinal Vincent Nichols and afterwards the blessing of the new Across Jumbalance which takes the sick to Lourdes. The first person I met was Sheila Allan CWL member of A & B and past President of the branch. She has been involved with Across for many years and was privileged  to be part of the offertory procession. The Cardinal blessed the bus and then was taken up on the lift to look around . I was welcomed by Helen Young a Trustee of Across who looked after me for the afternoon, and what a surprise when she said she had ordered afternoon tea at Browns . What a wonderful day.

Cardinal blessing the new ambulance

The crowds gather for the blessing

Inside the bus eight beds and seating for helpers

Shelagh Allen, A & B on the newly commissioned ACROSS Jumbulance

17-19 February

We all attended the Officers meeting in Swanwick – the first of my presidency – when the time was given over to full discussion of the Model Rules required to be  drawn up to support the new constitution. A lot of hard work was achieved with full participation by the members attending. Here are a few scenes from the weekend

Jennifer Halal talking us through our preparations for National Coffee Morning on 30th April

Morning Prayer on Saturday

National Secretary and National President at the end of a very busy day

Margaret Valentine presents Catholic Women’s League Brentwood Branch officers with cards and badges for their new section opened at Gidea Park (32 members)

Esther talks us through the requirements of Data Protection

November 2016

Blog 2 – Saturday 26th November went to a concert at St Aidan’s  Ashington Northumberland to hear a concert  by Newcastle Male  Voice Choir, they were excellent all fifty of them with a lady conductor. The inside of the church is wonderful as you will see from the photos. I am off to a Advent Service in the German Lutheran church, what a super weekend.

Blog 1 The members of the National Executive met to discuss their plans going forward. More details will be issued as we go along.

I attended Ipswich Section, East Anglia Branch 80th anniversary celebrations. What a wonderful start to my presidency visits.

Margaret Valentine (right) National President with Ipswich Section member and Branch President of East Anglia

And cutting the cake with their eldest member – what a privilege!

At Salford Branch meeting there were so many smiling faces – what a treat to visit. I even ended up taking part in a Play!!

Such a lively meeting

Putting my acting skills to good use