President Communique #2

National President Margaret Ann Jacobs, February 7, 2017

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“Christ, risen and glorified, is the wellspring of our hope, and he will not deprive us of the help we need to carry out the mission which he has entrusted to us.”                                                                          (Evangelii Gudium, 275)

Commendations to the provincial councils for the dedicated efforts on behalf of their members! Every provincial council is unique with differing challenges and opportunities to learn and grow in God’s image. You are an important link in the hierarchical chain as issues arise at diocesan/parish level.

Thank you for the enthusiastic manner in pursuing the new theme. It isn’t intended to make more work but to offer opportunities to revisit basic beliefs, deepen faith and create new ways to recommit members’ energies “For God and Canada”. Enclosed you will find a workshop that I created to develop the theme. You are welcome to use, modify and/or edit it. Indeed I have already changed the original program.

I share with you some news from Alberta Mackenzie Provincial President Cathy Bouchard. Linda Dudar from the Calgary Diocesan Council has created a song to accompany the new theme. Go to the Youtube link: Cathy says lyrics and ‘sheet’ music will be coming in the next few weeks. Maybe she’ll share these with members of the national executive at the winter meeting.

Please do continue to keep alive the communications chain you have established with diocesan/parish council counterparts. The mentoring and affirmation will provide welcome encouragement. New members are just waiting to be invited to join the League.

I thank those who have forwarded to me workshops/prayer services and I invite you to revisit this opportunity to share the amazing work members have done. I know there are beautiful resources that could benefit others across the country. Why not pass these along? Sometimes members consider it an honour to have their resources publicly acknowledged.

Following discussion concerning long-term strategic planning at the national executive fall meeting, correspondence regarding the challenge was generated, requesting feedback from National Past President Barbara Dowding, National President-elect Anne-Marie Gorman and myself which included the following topics: training required, identifying the stakeholders, how to collect information, analyze and evaluate results, the goals to be achieved, possible programs required, timeline involved, committee selection (chairperson) and the priority required for planning. Executive Director Kim Scammell charted the feedback which was discussed on a teleconference call which took place in December with Barbara, Anne-Marie, Bishop McGrattan and me. It was felt that further training in the process of strategy planning was required to address many of the issues discussed. It was decided that one training session would be held for the administrative committee prior to the winter executive meeting and that Andrea Dolan (member of the Manifest  team  Social  Marketing Strategy and  Framework  2008) would  be invited to provide an update to the whole executive team at the winter meeting.

Subsequently there was further reading of timely literature on strategic planning (which was provided by Kim Scammell) with feedback followed by collation again (done by the executive director). Teleconference calls took place January 31st and February 8th in preparation for presentation of a report at the meeting.

Under the capable direction of National First Vice-President Fran Lucas and Life Member Becky Kallal, “12 Hours of Prayer for Palliative Care” has been launched. Please continue to promote this most worthwhile resource package and sign the petition. Try to make this a community event. Encourage councils to be flexible if this is a conflicted date.

Through diocesan/parish council presidents encourage the use of materials found in the parish mailings. They have been generated to help enliven the parish councils. There will be many new promotional resources available. Watch for these in the spring.

Convention time is always an exciting time. So much planning and preparation goes into making these events memorable. They are wonderful opportunities to deepen members’ spirituality and to have fun while educating and challenging members. Don’t forget to share these activities and programs with the rest of the country. “On the Spot” is waiting for good news stories … and pictures are worth a thousand words!

I have tried my best to accommodate as many convention invitations as possible but I will need to confirm activity schedules with several councils whose dates may not overlap but require time for travelling between locations. My guardian angel will be working overtime this spring!

I look forward to seeing you soon at the executive meeting. I hope you find it a time when faith, fun and fulfillment abound.

May the Spirit inspire, empower and bless you as you offer joyful service to God and Canada.


Yours in the Spirit,

Margaret Ann  Jacobs

National President