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GFS World News
Dear Fellow GFS Members “Challenge prayers. ss you all Glenys
B E A R Y E O N E A N O T H E R S B U R D E N S
Dear Friends in GFS ‘We can do all things through Christ’ This is our theme in Wales for World Council. Without Christ in our lives we are weak, but with His strength we achieve many things. For me, being your World President in GFS is one of those many privileges that has been bestowed upon me through Jesus our Lord. It is lovely to see GFS vibrant in so many corners of the world. It is encouraging to see GFS activities, meetings and celebrations on internet media sites like face book. I know some feel it can be dangerous but used wisely it is a wonderful way of communicating. Yes technology is progressing so rapidly many of us can’t keep up with it. It is because of this wonderful technology that David and I will be visiting Australia in September/ October for three weeks. I just happened to mention to Val Gribble that I would love to visit Australia and in no time at all it has been arranged!!! We will have news of our visit in our next issue. May God Bless you all and ‘Thank you’ for all you do in the name of GFS. Yours in Christ World Council Wales 2014 Fri 25 Jul - Mon 04 Aug Swansea University Singleton Park, Swansea, SA2 8PP
In our trip called life, God is the destination, Jesus is the road to God, and the Holy Spirit is the GPS to guide us. We do run into road construction that can detour us, but we must get past the detours and back on the main road to get to our destination. ~ Paul Hoffman
AUSTRALIA Gathering as one big group is always exciting and a time to renew friendships, make new friends and together GFS in Australia We have all been enduring winter in our many different ways. I have had frosty mornings and cold days, scarves and gloves along with those great puffy jackets but the warmth of GFS continues to brighten our days. Around the country we have had A presentation of a Past Australian Chairman badge to two lovely ladies who held the honour of Australian Chairman back in 1980’s. Mrs Ev Beckenham was chairman from 1982 – 1984 and had as her theme “looking unto Jesus” and Miss Pat Byron followed as chairman from 1985 – 1987 inviting us to be “caring” during her term of office. Ev Beckenham, Norm Beckenham and Pat Bryon are pictured here at their morning tea to celebrate and honour their times as Chairman.
I had the privilege of visiting Sydney GFS as they took over the reins of GFS Sydney once again. Mrs Lyn Vaak is now heading up the board of management with a very capable and enthusiastic team. In Perth, there was the excitement of a High Tea to gather together daughters, mothers and grandmothers as they celebrated Mother’s Day.
Food galore for hungry mothers.
In Brisbane there was the excitement as they gathered for Provincial Gathering of GFS members some travelling from northern areas some 1000 km away to be there. They enjoyed a weekend of relaxing, rejuvenating, reflection, rejuvenating, reunions and rest!
Here we are in Brisbane proudly showing off our felt pictures on a Christmas theme. Camping has been the flavour of the month with campers meeting in the south at Gippsland, for a weekend camp. The camp had a mixture of cultures meeting together as the population of Sudanese families grows in the area. The adventure activities had everyone challenged and joining in together. In Sydney their camping experience took them caving – a camp that has been held now for over 20 years and always keenly anticipated. In Tasmania we have our historian burning the midnight oil to complete the writing of our history (now 110 years of GFS) and working towards a book launch as we greet our World President in September. South Australian Townsend members met in June for a luncheon and a great time of fellowship. Lauren Jankovic (our junior delegate to world council in Ireland) has celebrated their marriage to Scott with all of GFS sending their best wishes.
Scott and Lauren cutting their wedding cake. We are continuing our focus on the world project as plans are continuing to be made. Bev and Gail are assisting with some sewing needs being shipped across from their parishes that are also keenly supporting those in the Solomon Islands.
Across the country we are making our final plans for the visit by Glenys and David in September. Their journey will take them from Perth on the west to Tasmania in the far south, along the eastern seaboard stopping at Melbourne, just north of Sydney in Newcastle then to Brisbane and a visit to PNG. We are also praying for Val Gribble as she works towards the Wales world council when she will be commissioned as the next World President. We know that Val will prayerfully use this preparation time to make plans and seek some new and innovative ways to serve her Lord. In GFS love, Julie Smith
New Zealand GFS members who attended World Council over the last twenty years will remember Liz Lowry. She was our Chaplain at World Council and always led our services, usually Evening Prayer, with love and humanity. She died peacefully at her Rest Home on 10 July surrounded by her family. Liz had been a leading light in Wellington South Parish for a number of decades. Her various roles in the parish included Liturgical Assistant with license to anoint, vestry member, synod representative, and parish warden. As a licensed lay minister, for many years she led a mid-week service at Elizabeth Memorial Hospital in Berhampore. A keen artist, Liz was an instigator of the Berhampore Art Group, meeting at the parish hall. In the wider Diocese Liz served as a Licensed Lay Ministry Chaplain, and was also a very active member of the Guild of St Raphael. Liz was a recipient of the Bishop’s Medal in recognition of her service to the life of Church. Liz was a good friend and was always ready to give her support and assistance to GFS. She had many interests, especially travel and she was always fully engaged in many activities and especially her family life. Members of GFS Council, Joy Parkin, GFS Trustee Gillian Robertson and her GFS friend from GFS House days, Anne Frood were among those who attended her funeral at her parish church, St Cuthbert’s in Berhampore, Wellington. Anne read from Proverbs 31:10-31, ‘In praise of a good woman’. We all agreed, it was a perfect choice. Here In Wellington we are fully engaged in our mission to the young women on our programme as they progress from school to employment. This year Ta’ase graduated and hopes to train in the future for ministry. Khayati graduates at the end of 2012 and Rebecca finished her Bachelor of Arts in Maori and Education and is now doing teacher training. This year we have twenty three girls on the scholarship Programme and we have an association with five schools in the Wellington area. During 2011 we gained two new members and lost one. Helen Allen is off to London in December for two years. She has been our secretary for eleven years and we will miss her. We hope and of course, expect her to join Council again when she returns to Wellington. Thinking of you all, around the world. Thank you for the emails and messages. It is always good to ‘hear’ from you. With love best wishes Janet Waite President GFS NZ
GFS/USA is feeling particularly blessed these days. One of the most exciting things that we have to report is our growth!! We are delighted to announce that we have granted 3 new charters since our March board meeting. We wish to welcome St. Mark’s Episcopal Church in the Diocese of Los Angeles, California; St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in the Diocese of Connecticut; and Grace Church in the Diocese of PA. It is important to recognize the Diocesan Presidents for their commitment to GFS and branch development. We are most grateful for the hard work of Margaret Nolde (LA), Karen Rowe (CT) and Angie Myshko (PA). Their efforts are unceasing! This year, we were also well represented at the Triennial Meeting for Episcopal Church Women (ECW), which was held concurrently with the General Convention of The Episcopal Church (TEC) in Indianapolis, Indiana. Their theme was Many Paths, One Journey and in keeping with that theme, Margaret Nolde was invited to present a workshop on GFS. Margaret used the stipend she received to bring a Senior Girl from the Diocese of Los Angeles, Janice Mangangey, with her. So, leader and youth member combined their skills to present a workshop on what GFS is about. They covered information about starting a branch, discussed branch activities, and introduced their groups to the global GFS. ECW delegates could attend one of the two workshops or stop by the GFS table at the Share Fair. We were delighted by the amount of interest we generated and are praying that some of the women were inspired to start a branch at their church.
It was also a pleasure to be present at ECW Triennial when they honored Distinguished Women of the Church. Each diocese was permitted to select one woman for this award. The award is presented to women in the Episcopal Church whose life and involvement in the secular community best reflects ‘her Christian values’. The Diocese of Los Angeles selected Marie Greatorex. Marie has been a very active member of GFS for many years. She published the GFS Highlights for many years and she organized a daily newsletter at our National Assembly 2010, which was hosted by the Diocese of LA. She is actively involved with GFS at St. John the Divine and with the Diocese of LA. In her ECW work, she is a key member of their diocesan communications team. Her rector, the Rev. Barbara Stewart, calls her the ‘heart of St. John’s. We are just delighted for her!
Marie Greatorex Finally, we continue to move forward on planning for our next National Assembly in June 2012 hosted by the Diocese of New Jersey. It is to be held at Georgian Court University in Lakewood, NJ. Planning will be kicked into high gear at our fall board meeting! We are hoping to have a significant number of girls from the Diocese of LA travel to the east coast for this assembly. We owe enormous gratitude to everyone who is working on the planning of this assembly, especially, Delores Alleyne (Connecticut), Lisa Auletta (New Jersey) and Jill Brzezynski (New Jersey). To keep up with the latest on GFS/USA, we invite you to like our Facebook page. Go to https://www.facebook.com/gfsusa and click on the LIKE button. You should also find us if you do a Facebook search for GFS/USA. If you have a Facebook page, let us know. If you would like to share your website, please post it and share it with us and our Facebook fans. We would love to know what you think of our page. If you are looking for more information, let us know that also. We pray that this news finds all our GFS family around the world safe and well, Llyn Evans Carter GFS/USA President JAPAN First of all, I would like to thank to all of you for your prayers. 14 months have passed since the big earthquake and tsunami hit Japan. I also thank to you that you decided to make the urgent fund at the 2011 GFS World Council I cannot forget your warmness and kindness. Let me introduce our working project named 3.11 Tsunami Project. Now GFS Japan has two main projects ,one is the support for the people in Kamaishi, and the other is for the people who have left from Fukushima.
l GFS Tokyo and GFS Hokkaido got together at Kamaish support centre.(23rd April 2012) 1.Kamaishi Sewing Machine Project Kamaishi is in the north-eastern Japan. It is on the Pacific coast. It used to have a population of 39,578 people, but 1,180 people were lost by the earthquake and tsunami. Most of them lost their houses, jobs and money, and they live in the temporary houses now. There are about 60 temporary housing estates in Kamaishi. And there are about 30 community rooms in the estates. Recently they began to get together at the community room and make hobby circles such as sewing, and knitting . Getting together, chattering and doing crafts will be a good therapy for them. On 7th March 2012, when we visited to Kamaishi , we met a woman who lived in the temporary house. She said she wanted a sewing machine in the community room. We discussed and discussed, and thought the sewing machines are useful for them. Then we decided to send them to temporary community rooms in Kamaishi. On 23rd April , we brought 4 sewing machines to Kamaishi support center. It took about 9 hours from Tokyo to Kamaishi by car. Actually 1,110 shilling has been sent from Wales. So we could buy them. We are going to continue to send more sewing machines for the suffering women there. We would like to buy 10 more sewing machines if we can.
At the community room in Kamaishi. ( 25th July 2012) They are using the sewing machines which were the present from GFS World.
1. Tsukishima Kid’s Project in Tokyo There are 10,000 people evacuated from Fukushima to fear the influence from nuclear pollution according to the Fukushima nuclear accidents. Most of them are young mothers and their children. Their husbands work in Fukushima to maintain their wives and children. They seldom come to Tokyo to see their family. They are forced to live in solitude, and want to get together with other people and know the exact information .Then at Tsukishima Anglican Church we provide a community place for the mothers and playground for the children. GFS serve good coffee and nice cakes for them. Young leaders read some picture books for the children and play with them in the garden. GFS Japan is very small group. We cannot carry out a great project. But we are going to do our best with your help. Please continue to pray for us. Haruko Mizutani England It is a great pleasure to write a contribution to the Newsletter for the first time. Some exciting things have happened since the last Newsletter. Mrs Glenys Packham from GFS in Carlisle Diocese and Elisha Da Silva from GFS Platform Penge had a glorious afternoon at Buckingham Palace as guests at the Jubilee Garden Party. The weather was perfect and it was a great thrill that they were able to see the Queen so close. They enjoyed the tea and admiring all the beautiful clothes including national costumes and found everyone friendly and helpful. A wonderful time for them both and a memory which they will treasure.
Glenys & Elisha Wainfleet Branch from Lincoln Diocese (Some of you will remember that this was Joy Epton’s branch) enjoyed an outing to Lincoln to explore the Showroom, an indoor climbing centre and visit the Collection an art gallery and museum. Fourteen girls aged from 7 to 15 went on the trip with two GFS leaders and volunteers. The girls particularly enjoyed the climbing wall and are keen to go again. We are very much looking forward to a Celebration Event on 31 st August when we will have our Celebration to mark the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. Great Yarmouth Project will have an open day and there will be activities arranged by the girls, young women, volunteers and staff. In the afternoon the Bishop of Norwich will open the newly re-designed at St. Paul’s Lodge a GFS housing project in Great Yarmouth. More of this in the next Newsletter.
And on 1st and 2nd of September there will a Branch Leaders Training Week-end for both England and Wales. Just a glimpse of what is happening in GFS England at the moment. Hazel Crompton (English President) Korea We continue to work on U-Mul-Ga which was the world project of 2008-2011, along with our regular program such as Junior Camp and Bazaars Junior camp this year were held in February and focused on “self-improvement” and it was evaluated that all the participants satisfied with program. Seniors got jealous on that and they had their camp in April with the same program. U-Mul-Ga project continued to help women from North Korea and decided to give scholarship to the children of them who had worked in “café` grace”. Two children of Our coffee barista were given GFS scholarship. Two children next right to our Primate Bishop Paul Kim are children of Okbeol Chang Who is in left to Bishop wearing white and she is our barista of café` grace Opened the second café`grace at Gongduk dong last November, 2011. Two children next right to our Primate Bishop Paul Kim are children of Okbeol Chang Who is in left to Bishop wearing white and she is our barista of café` grace Opened the second café`grace at Gongduk dong last November, 2011. GFS Korea do the bazaars every year and the profits go to U-Mul-Ga this year in June You can see cute little plants. Guess what! Those are from Ireland ,2011. Our programe director Myungsook Park brought seeds from Ireland and she planted . It is something, isn’t it? We make Japanese Apricot juice every year and sell at the café`grace. Korea, Japan, Sri Lanka, and Philippines became a link country at the W. Council in Ireland, We discussed right after the link was formed and decided to have some program. That some program is to have a camp in Philippines. Japan had planted trees for years and we will join them and do more such as painting the St. Paul’s school in Balbalasang. We will have 4 juniors and 1 senior from Korea and same numbers from Japan. We hope to meet former GFS members in Manila. They leave for Philippines on Aug. 6. We ask you to pray for this camp which could be a good bridge in Asia.
We make Japanese Apricot juice every year and sell at the café`grace.
Opened the second café`grace at Gongduk dong last November, 2011.
GFS Korea do the bazaars every year and the profits go to U-Mul-Ga this year in June
Junior camp this year were held in February and focused on “self-improvement” and it was evaluated that all the participants satisfied with program. Seniors got jealous on that and they had their camp in April with the same program.
U-Mul-Ga project continued to help women from North Korea and decided to give scholarship to the children of them who had worked in “café` grace”. Two children of our coffee barista were given GFS scholarship. Two children next right to our Primate Bishop Paul Kim are children of Okbeol Chang Who is in left to Bishop wearing white and she is our barista of café` grace
Greetings to you all from GFS Ireland! It is a privilege indeed for me on behalf of my country to write and communicate with you all – of course it is my first time to contribute to the World Newsletter. GFS in Ireland has been quite busy prior to summer time. Each branch has worked hard throughout the season and all girls and Leaders alike are to be complimented on the amount of work completed - their weekly attendance and patience is admirable and I appreciate their dedication. Dioceses did their fair share also. Everything was kept running smoothly throughout the country. Early in the year there were the Central and Diocesan Elections and all new Office Holders took up their positions from 19th May – my Commissioning date. Florence Higgins (my predecessor) and all outgoing Officers are to be complimented for simply ‘everything’. Being Central President is a position that I had never coveted and it was only at the 11 th hour that I felt guided in this direction. I was commissioned as Central President in the Chapel of the Church of Ireland College of Education in Rathmines, Dublin by Rev. Janice Aiton, our Central Chaplain. She was assisted by GFS members. Some of my Branch and Diocesan members; Bishop Ken (my Bishop) and his wife, Mrs. Helen Clarke; Boys’ Brigade representatives; family circle members and friends were present. This service was truly memorable and I appreciate the effort made by everyone to be with me on this important occasion in the history of GFS Ireland. About myself – I live in County Longford, which is almost in the centre of the whole country. I am married to John and we are farming. We have four in family, all adults – George, John, Naomi and Adam. My parish is Ballymacormack and we alternate Sunday Services with Killashee. Both country Churches are part of the Longford Group of Parishes, and are four and five miles respectively from the main church, which is in the town. (There are two other groups of Parishes within the County). We are in the Dioceses of Kilmore, Elphin and Ardagh, with Ardagh being ‘our neck of the woods’. I am a Leader with Longford Branch. Last season we had twenty six girls and seven Leaders, five of whom were active. During the Easter holidays Florence ran a most enjoyable All Ireland Camp for girls aged ten and upwards. It was held in St. Columba’s College, Dublin. The numbers attending were smaller than usual, with fifty six Girls and twenty Leaders attending, some alternating. The weather was mixed but it didn’t affect the extensive programme. The facilities were excellent and a most energetic and fun filled time was enjoyed by all. A GFS Conference was held in the Theological Institute, Dublin, 22 nd – 24th June. It was for new Office Holders as well as being a refresher for others. Most Rev. Dr. Michael Jackson, Archbishop of Dublin opened the event. He chose ‘John the Baptizer’ as his theme. He likened the outreach and teaching of GFS to that of the prophet with special emphasis on preparation, courage and humility. The Archbishop being very familiar with GFS encouraged the Society to continue its valuable links with family, church and community saying that in showing God’s love, in visiting the sick and elderly, and engaging with youth, was as needful now as in our founding days. There were many other sessions; Diocesan Roles, Crafts, Public speaking/Self esteem, a new Badge called ‘Science and Discovery’, Business and our 2012-2013 Bible Study syllabus, entitled ‘Servant Leadership, Heart for God’. All sessions were enjoyable and necessary. On July 3rd five girls between the ages of seventeen and twenty six attended a Garden Party at Aras an Uachtaráin, hosted by President Michael D Higgins and his wife Sabina. This party was part of the ‘Being Young and Irish’. Representatives from a wide variety of organisations were invited. Everyone present was entertained, had lovely refreshments and got a tour of the house. (An interesting fact about the house is that despite its size it has only seven bedrooms). The President spoke about the importance of ‘Youth Work’ in Ireland and engaging the youth today. He encouraged the various organisations to share ideas. The girls had a thoroughly enjoyable day.
Before I conclude I would like to say that I have chosen Romans: Chapter 12, verse 5 as a Theme for my presidency here. It is as follows; ‘We being many are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another’. I feel that GFS Ireland must move forward with this theme in mind and I would invite all other member countries to join with us. Times are challenging worldwide at present and it is important to bring GFS confidently forward. Of course our Motto; ‘Bear ye one another's burdens and so fulfil the law of Christ’ is as important today as it was in 1875. I pray that God will bless each country including my own as we continue to do the work of the Girls’ Friendly Society. Yours in Christ, Sylvia Quinn. GFS Wales Greetings from not so sunny Wales! Our weather has been very mixed this summer but it hasn't stopped GFS members having fun. The branches continue to meet in school term time and enjoy a variety of activities. Most plan outdoor activities during the summer but this year these have had to be curtailed due to the wet weather. Maybe we will have an 'Indian Summer' when branches restart in the Autumn. We held our Adventure Weekend in July and met again at Coleg Trefeca near Brecon.
Although we were few in number there was plenty of fun, friendship and fellowship. We were joined on Friday evening and Saturday by Poppy, Margaret and Cliff Winks from the Northern Area in England. Poppy and Margaret showed us how they made bead bracelets and everyone had a go at making their own. Entertainment followed with the leaders doing 'Cinderella' before we sang our 'traditional' Adventure weekend songs. On Saturday we went to Brecon Cathedral where the Dean showed us around and those of us who thought they knew the Cathedral were surprised at how much we learnt! Following lunch we went to the Leisure Centre for ten pin bowling. Two lanes had been booked and there was hotly fought contest to see who would emerge as winners! The girls then went shopping whilst the leaders enjoyed a well deserved cup of tea.
On Saturday evening as well as craft activities we were treated to a pamper session with Hannah providing relaxing foot massage and Jess painted finger and toe nails. More entertainment followed from the Felinfoel girls before we all enjoyed a sing song! On both evenings Glenys led meditation in the Capel Bach (Welsh for Small Chapel). These are always special times and we all gain so much from stopping and thinking and allowing God to be present in the busyness and bustle. This year on Sunday morning we attended a service at the local Church in Talgarth. For some girls it was the first time they had attended such a service – or even been in a church. All too soon the weekend was over but we plan to meet again next year! With love and best wishes Catriona Charlesworth Provincial Secretary
South Africa Greetings into all the GFS members worldwide the name of our Lord Jesus Christ In the beginning of July 6 Dioceses in South Africa being Diocese of Cape Town, Natal, Port Elizabeth, Umzimvubu, Umbhashe and Umtata gathered at St Pauls Parish at Upper Mjika in the Diocese of Umtata. Bishop Mzamane blessed the event with his sermon from Numbers: 24 verse 12. He encouraged us to say what God has asked us to do. GBFS president of Umtata Mrs Zanele Ntenetyana in her speech explained the objectives of the organization.She reported achievements of the organization and one of them was enrolment of 200 new members in the diocese of Umtata.
DIOCES OF JOHANNESBURG GBFS in the Diocese has managed to establish a new branch St Augustine at Orange Grove guided by 2012/2013 project plan. The new members are still being trained preparing to be confirmed. Hosted a combined GBFS Youth Guild where the members of different Anglican youth organizations shared good practices. Visited Aids Orphans at Sparrows Village in Roodepoort and donated some clothing and Vegetables and also visited hospitals to offer prayers to the sick as some patients don’t have families who visits them We normally have night vigils at 3 months intervals to pray for our members who have problems, as part of our Motto, Carry each other’s Burdens
DIOCESE OF PORT ELIZABETH
DRAMA during a talent show by GBFS members supported by Mother’s union
New members were enrolled by Rev Ndzwane at St Cyprian‘s Parish in Port Elizabeth
Report Compiled by B.Gijana (South Africa)
News from Sri Lanka
Our annual Easter Programme and Avurudhu celebrations
God changes caterpillers into butterflies, sand into pearls and,
Members listened to the Easter Message, made paper Easter Eggs in groups, participated in the Avurudhu / Pudu Varsham (Sinhalese & Tamil New Year) celebrations with traditional games and enjoyed tasty Sri Lankan goodies. The morning ended with the ever-popular baila (a dance form).
Sales were brisk at the GFS Table too.
We believe that ..... God changes caterpillars into butterflies, Sand into pearls and Coal into diamonds, using time and pressure
- He's working on us all
Lunch time Services were begun in our Hall in May & we hope to conduct these services for some time.
Your prayers please for our GFS ..... as we overcome obstacles through the grace of God, march forward in faith & aim for the stars!
Our Ballet Class in progress. The Aerobic Classes also continue.