Mothers’ Union 120 Years

The Strathalbyn Branch of the Mothers’ Union celebrated 120 years at its meeting on Tuesday 8th May at St George’s Meadows.

The first Mothers’ Union was formed in 1876 by Mary Sumner in Old Arlesford, in the south England. By 1885 it was a diocesan organisation in Winchester and quickly spread across England and then internationally as women migrated. In 1896 a Central Council was formed and in 1925 central headquarters were established in London. The Union received a Royal Charter in 1926 – the first granted to a religious and a women’s organisation. Until the 1970s, divorced women were excluded from membership.

Mrs Dorothy Harmer

The first Australian Mothers’ Union was formed in Cullenswood, Tasmania, in 1892, closely followed in South Australian 1895 when introduced by Lady Victoria Buxton and Dorothy Harmer – the wives of the Governor and the Anglican Bishop. Within five years there were 49 branches with 1,350 members across the state.

By 1904, Unions had been established in all Australian states. In the early 1900s, the Union frequently co-operated with other Christian women’s organisations, and sometimes the National Councils of Women, in campaigns for political and social reforms. Early activities included, for example, campaigns for the provision of sex education for children, censorship of films and the Bush Nursing Service. Its national journal, Mothers in Australia (from 1945 Mianza and from 1960 Mia, Mia) was established in 1917. The Union’s literature includes reams of advice about child rearing. While promoting Christian women’s influence in the wider society, the Union did not support the idea of working women.

Source: The Australian Women’s Register

The following news item appeared in the pages of The Mount Barker Courier and Onkaparinga and Gumeracha Advertiser on the 17th December 1897.

Lady Victoria Buxton

“The Governor and Lady Victoria Buxton being on a visit to Strathalbyn, the opportunity was taken of asking her ladyship to attend a meeting in the institute on Monday afternoon for the purpose of establishing a branch of the Mothers’ Union. Although only a few hours’ notice had been given a fair number of ladies attended the meeting, and the Rev. A. Wheeler, the incumbent of Christ Church, presided. Lady Victoria Buxton gave a touching address on the objects and work of the society, remarking that although the society was worked on church lines that was not a barrier to any mother joining the union.”

New Assistant Priest

Daniel and Jasamine Irvine after the service.

On Wednesday 24 January the Bishop commissioned the Reverend Daniel Irvine as an Assistant Priest in the Parish of Mount Barker, a ministry which will also extend to the churches in and around Strathalbyn. Jasamine will continue as Bishop’s Secretary and Registry Clerk. We are looking forward to welcoming them both to Strathalbyn.

Confirmation at Christ Church

Em, Brodie and Sam with their families and sponsors and Bishop John after the service.

On Sunday 21 January the Bishop visited Strathalbyn to confirm three young people during the usual Sunday morning Eucharist. This is quite a milestone as it is seventeen years since the last Confirmation was held in the Church. The confirmees were supported by their families and sponsors who joined the congregation for morning tea in the hall at the conclusion of the service.

Parish Combined Service

There was a good roll up of parishioners for the combined fifth Sunday Eucharist at St Mary’s Milang. The celebrant was the Rev’d Alex Stone who was assisted by Deacon Margaret Holt. Organist was Marlene Potts and the readers were Kate Gibson and Brian Landseer.

We had hoped to share a barbecue lunch in the Soldiers Memorial Gardens but the strong north wind and total fire ban resulted in transferring the meal to the Institute Supper Room across the road.

While the meat was being cooked at a nearby parishioner’s home we were able to catch up on the latest news and share a drink, according to individual tastes. We were delighted at this time to find that an invitation to the local Uniting Congregation to join us for lunch had been accepted and our gathering took on an ecumenical flavour.

Of course there was plenty of food for everyone, whether sausages, patties, salads or sweets; and good conversation as well; so there was no hurry on anyone’s part to make an early departure.

Churches Bookshop Dinner

The Good Shepherd Church Hall was filled to capacity on Saturday evening, 7th October by folk from all of Strathalbyn’s churches who met together, not only in good fellowship, but for a good cause- the support of the Strathalbyn Churches Bookshop.

This year marks the fortieth anniversary of the bookshop which began in 1977 trading half a day a week in a Church foyer on the main street. It moved to the current shop premises in 1991.

As well as stocking new and second hand religious books the shop keeps a collection of cards and gifts and its photo kiosks make digital photo printing available in our country town. Photocopying is also available.

Farewell Val Ball

A good number of friends from the church and other community organizations gathered at the Anglican Church Hall on Tuesday 20 August to wish Val Ball a happy and contented life in her new home at Malvern.  We enjoyed a very pleasant afternoon tea together and presented Val with a beautiful arrangement of flowers. In the wider community Val is remembered as active in local government as the first female elected to the Strathalbyn Council, as Mayor and as Senior Executive of the Local Government Association. She was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia in the 1998 Australia Day Honours for her service to local government and the community.

Welcome Fr Thomas

 

 

The Rev’d Thomas Karamakuzhiyil

The Bishop has asked the Rev’d Thomas Karamakuzhiyil, the Incumbent of Mt Barker to take on the additional role of Priest in Charge of Strathalbyn as the two parishes, together with the Parish of Onkaparinga Valley seek ways in which they can co-operate together as the Hills Mission Partnership.

Fr Thomas will be licensed by the Bishop for his new role on Saturday 26 August at 11.00 am in Christ Church, Strathalbyn and will then be the celebrant at the Eucharist on Sunday 27 August at 10.00 am in Christ Church.

I am sure that all our parishioners will welcome this appointment and look forward to working together in order to forward the Mission of the Church.

Alex.

Combined Service at St George’s, Meadows

In Sunday 30 April the members of the various congregations joined together for their usual fifth Sunday Combined Eucharist and lunch at St George’s, Meadows in order to celebrate that church’s Patronal Festival. On this occasion we were also joined by parishioners from the Onkaparinga Parish who are our partners in the proposed Hills District. The celebrant at the Eucharist was the Rev’d Adrian Stephens and the preacher the  Rev’d Rob McEwin. Following the service we shared a wonderful meal together in the community hall at Prospect Hill.