faith | service | social justice

2018 Annual Report – New Brunswick

May 31, 2019 | Annual Reports, New Brunswick, Provincial

Hazel Robichaud
New Brunswick Provincial Council President

As provincial president, I was honoured and privileged to represent members of New Brunswick Provincial Council. As I attended national executive/board meetings, it was a great pleasure to be among a group of women from across Canada that shared common interests and concerns “For God and Canada.”

The year was a busy one. In August, I attended my first national convention as provincial president. It was amazing to stand in front of more than 600 people, give an oral report and send greetings from the provincial council. In October, the first provincial table officers meeting was held at the Villa Madonna Retreat House, just prior to the annual retreat. Provincial president-elect June Brown and I held meetings with some parish councils concerning amalgamation, as well as with Bishop Robert Harris (Saint John). I attended a prayer breakfast in Fredericton at St. Dunstan’s Catholic Church and the first regional meetings for east and west were held in October. In November, I returned to Winnipeg for the board meeting. Planning meetings for the 2019 provincial convention were held in Oromocto, which I attended.

At the regional meetings, I was amazed at the work accomplished by the councils. Listening to each council provide a report filled me with such pride in belonging to such a wonderful organization of women who showed love and kindness through all the works of charity. I was very pleased with the attendance at those meetings, which showed parish councils were accepting of change and willing to work together. It was a pleasure to meet many new presidents in both regions.

Twenty-eight of 39 provincial council presidents completed the annual report survey. Responses were reflected as follows:

Sources of information from which to inform members?
• national communiqués (93%)
The Canadian League magazine (89%)
• national website (57%)
• provincial websites or newsletters (46%)
• parish bulletins (43%)
• local newspapers (25%)
• Google searches (21%)

National priorities introduced to and discussed or acted upon
• removing the Canada Summer Jobs program attestation (89%)
• excluding medical assistance in dying from palliative care/hospice facilities (82%)
• protecting the conscience rights of healthcare professionals (43%)
• requiring age verification mechanisms for adult pornographic websites (29%)
• establishing standards of testing and labelling for products deemed “flushable” (25%)
• eliminating Goods and Services Tax from child safety products (21%)

Methods used to introduce these topics?
One-hundred per cent of councils reported that topics were discussed at meetings.

Spiritual Advisors
Eighty-nine per cent of councils felt the spiritual advisor was supportive of the League. Presidents reported meeting with the spiritual advisor monthly (54%), rarely (32%) and weekly (7%), with four per cent each of presidents reporting annually or never.

Annual Summary
Ninety-three per cent of presidents provided a summary of the council’s activities to members. Of those reporting, 69% provided oral or written reports, 19% provided summaries via e-mail and six per cent used the parish bulletin.

Resources Used to Preside at Meetings
Constitution & Bylaws (75%)
Executive Handbook (71%)
National Manual of Policy and Procedure (61%)
• council policy and procedure manual (57%)
Robert’s Rules of Order (46%)
Parliamentary Procedure (21%)

National Theme
Ninety-six per cent of councils found having a national theme and/or logo beneficial.

Executive Handbook
Ninety-six per cent of presidents read the Executive Handbook and understood the duties of the executive.

Presidents were asked to share what they were most proud of in the council. Responses were very positive indeed. Presidents felt the teamwork within the parish and community made for a sisterhood where members shared and felt a belonging.

As provincial president, I was so happy with all I witnessed. The friendliness, caring and spirituality of all members made me feel so good to be a part of this wonderful organization of The Catholic Women’s League of Canada.

May the peace of Our Lady of Good Counsel be with each of you.