MU Conference 2023 - All-Ireland Mothers' Union

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MU Conference 2023

Mothers' Union All Ireland Conference 2023

The Mothers' Union All Ireland Conference took place in An Grianán, Termonfeckin, Co. Louth from Friday 24th March until Sunday 26th March. It was a wonderful weekend of prayer, fellowship and working with some inspiraional speakers.

Delegates began to arrive in the early aftrenoon and there was a buzz of excitement around the place as everyone reconnected after so many years.

Following a lovely evening meal we gathered in the Kellog's Hall where we were welcomed to the Conference by our All Ireland President, June Butler. June then introduced the All Ireland Vice Presidents and Unit Coordinators to everyone.

It was lovely to have our newly appointed All Ireland Chaplain present and he spoke of how it was a privilege to be appointed to the position and his previous experiences of Mothers' Union.

Olive Good told us all about MU Enterprise and we were also introduced to Stephanie Nunnn, Head of Membership, MSH.

Friday evenings events closed with a Service of Thanksgiving led by Revd. Trevor Sargent.

Enjoy the slideshows featuring pictures from the weekend in An Grianán, Termonfeckin ~ March 2023.
An inspirational prayer walk was organised for the morning of Saturday 25th by Mrs Claire Smith, Faith & Policy Unit Coordinator & Prayer Representative Armagh. Claire brought along her mandolin and accompanied us with the singing of hymns ~  

  • How lovely is Thy dwelling place
  • When we walk with the Lord
  • What a friend we have in Jesus.

The Prayer Walk was followed by Morning Devotions led by Mrs Kaye Nesbitt and Mrs Lesley Bayley.

Saturday Morning with Stephanie

We were delighted to watch a video with a message from the Worldwide President of Mothers' Union, Sheran Harper who spoke on "Reimagining  the Church's Best Kept Secret". Sheran is an inspirational leader of Mother's Union and spoke about the great work which is undertaken by Mothers' Union in Ireland, both here at home and overseas.

Stehanie Nunn spoke to us then about Reimagining Mothers' Union and some of the ideas that had come out of the Reimagining Conference in Liverpool. Following Steph's presentation we broke into Diocesan Groups to discuss what we had heard and to brainstorm ideas for growing Mothers' Union in our own Diocese and All Ireland.

We were delighted to welcome The Most Reverend John McDowell who gave a Reflection and said Grace before lunch.
Equipping Our Leaders ~ Revd. Canon Dr Maurice Elliott

During the afternoon session Revd. Dr. Maurice Elliott gave an excellent talk on "Equipping Our Leaders". He gave us plenty of food for thought on how to be effective leaders and the various skills required. Following his presentation we broke into buzz groups to discuss what we felt made effective leaders and we were challenged to use inovative methods to report back ~ groups used song, prayer, poetry and simple reports to deliver their results.

During the afternoon we also heard from Liz Greer & Wendy Halligan who spoke about engaging Young Members and the Getaway Weekends. There was also catching up sessions:

  • The All Ireland Website ~ Margaret Jacob
  • Social Media ~ Revd. Canon Jen McWhirter
  • MU Live ~ June Butler
  • Finances ~ Revd. Canon Ken Rue
Fireside Chat & "Reimagining" Entertainment

Saturday evening began with a "Fireside Chat" during which June Butler asked Iris Suitor and Stephanie Nunn a selection of different questions about Mothers' Union and what makes them "tick".

Before evening Compline there was a fun filled entertainment section during which members divided into groups to create cocktails. The room was filled with a great buzz of chatter and laughter as the various "concoctions" were created. The groups then were invited to give an account of their cocktail and the "reports" were greatly enjoyed by everyone .... not sure, however, that the resulting cocktails were fit for human consumption.
Sunday's Events

Sunday began with a service of Holy Communion led by Revd. Canon Katharine Poulton, Rector of St. Mary's Julianstown Union of Parishes.

After breakfast we gathered in the Kellog's Hall to hear from June Butler, Iris Suitor (Zonal Trustee) and Irene Boyd who is the All Ireland Indoor Member Contact.

Everyone then adjourned to different rooms to hold Unit Meetings and a Diocesan Presidents & Membership meeting.

Before heading to lunch we returned to the Kellog's Hall for Midday Prayers.

It was a wonderful weekend and An Grianán certainly looked after us very well. Everyone went home tired but enthusiastic about building Mothers' Union into the future. Well done to everyone involved in organising the weekend.
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