‘Transformation in Action’ – Mothers’ Union Marks Start of New Season
Mothers’ Union members from across Dublin and Glendalough congregated in St Andrew’s Church in Malahide on Thursday evening (September 14) for their annual Diocesan Festival Service.
The service, at which Archbishop Michael Jackson presided assisted by the Rector, Canon David Gillespie and the Mothers’ Union Chaplain, Canon Leonard Ruddock, marks the start of a busy season for Dublin and Glendalough Mothers’ Union. Members rededicated themselves to the orginsation and four diocesan officers were commissioned. Avril Gillatt, Aimee Hourie and Jean Denner were commissioned for the office of diocesan vice–presidents while Valerie Twomey was commissioned as diocesan secretary.
The theme of the service was ‘Transformation in Action’ and in his sermon the Revd Colin McConaghie spoke about the importance of being prepared to stand out from the crowd and speak up in the face of injustice.
He spoke of a favourite family game called Herd in which the aim was not to stand out from the herd. Participants hope to give the same answer as everyone else otherwise they will be lumbered with a pink cow and once you have a pink cow you cannot win the game.
“Human nature decrees that we like to go with everyone else. It is easier to go along with popular opinion. No one wants to stand out from the crowd,” he said pointing out that in the two readings [Micah 6: 1–8 and Matthew 5: 1–12] we encountered two people who were not afraid to be different.
Micah, he observed, spoke out against the king and the people of Israel saying that their ways were not God’s ways. In the Sermon on the Mount Jesus spoke in a way that was so counter cultural that people did not want to hear it, he said. “Jesus wasn’t afraid to stand alone, to stand up for what was right… That was transformation in action,” he commented.
And what of Mothers’ Union, he asked, were they prepared to stand out from the crowd? He said no one wanted to talk about domestic abuse and violence in the home but Mothers’ Union is standing with those who are abused. They had brought the issue to the forefront of the understanding of the Church and were prepared to stand out from the crowd.
“Standing up for what is right. Standing up for justice. Standing up for family values and the importance of the family home, for women in prison and for women across the world who are not given a chance. Standing up for those with no voice. That is transformation in action. And we can’t just stand by and let Mothers’ Union get on with it because it is our call to stand out from the crowd and stand up for justice and fairness for all. Together we can do justice, love kindness and walk humbly with our God,” he said.
Following the service MU diocesan president, Ada Lawson, thanked members for attending the service in such large numbers and those who led the service. She encouraged members to attend the MU service which takes place on the first Thursday of each month in Christ Church Cathedral where they can worship together and connect. She also urged people to reach out to people in the parish who experience loneliness. As Mothers’ Union prepares for the new season she called on branches to get in touch with her if they needed anything.