St Alphege Branch
What’s coming up?
Thursday 6th January at 1.30pm in the Oliver Bird Hall
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING followed by at talk on ‘Nursing through the Years‘ with Alison Pratt.
Thursday 3rd February – 1.30pm in the Oliver Bird Hall
A talk by Michael Palmer – ‘My Years at St Alphege‘.
History of Mothers’ Union
Mothers’ Union was established in 1876. Its purpose was to encourage parents in caring for their children, not just physically and mentally but also spiritually. From the outset it recognised that strong relationships and the role of family, however defined, are crucial in building healthy communities.
We aim to show our Christian faith by the transformation of communities worldwide. We can do this through the promotion of stable marriage, family life and the protection of children. This is our mission. It is what we aim to achieve. Whilst the ways in which we operate to fulfil that need may be different from that of the world of the 19th century, our vision today is still of a world where God’s love is shown through loving, respectful, and flourishing relationships. This is the essence of our work.
Mothers’ Union is at work locally and overseas and through prayer.
Mothers’ Union action locally
The branch is continually striving to raise funds to support the work of Mothers’ Union at home and overseas. We do this through monthly meetings, luncheons, the annual Pancake Party and individual efforts carried out by members some of which are pictured on this page.
Refugees and Asylum Seekers and Victims of Domestic Abuse
Mothers’ Union members work to provide a welcome for asylum seeker families and to access items such as pushchairs and household goods that they might need. We have a link with Birmingham and Solihull Women’s Aid and we supply emergency toiletry packs to women and children who have fled from domestic abuse.
Members visit The Birmingham Children’s Hospital in conjunction with the chaplaincy team to offer support to parents of sick children. This can be just talking with the parents or praying with them in the chapel.
We also support a Knit and Natter group at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital providing occupational therapy to patients.
Mothers’ Union members assist in baptism preparation and help the clergy at baptisms. We keep in touch with families by delivering special cards on the anniversary of the child’s baptism. Dads are given a small card entitled What Dads Add affirming a father’s role in the spiritual nurture of children.
Creativity in Action
Members and friends sew grieving gowns for still-born babies and knit blankets and garments for premature babies. We supply five hospitals in and around Birmingham. We sew drug pockets for medication for people undergoing chemo-therapy. Members work with local organisations to support dementia sufferers by making fiddle muffs to supply to local care homes. Members knit teddies to give to children in need of comfort. In this way we can send a message that we are there for them and we care.
AFIA: Holidays away from it all
Mothers’ Union helps to fund holidays and days out for families experiencing difficulties, who would not otherwise have a holiday. The money for AFIA comes from your donations and fundraising – there is a separate fund earmarked for AFIA. The Diocese deals with the applications and arranges holidays or days out as appropriate. These holidays are very much appreciated by the recipients.
Mothers’ Union action through prayer
Our Wave of Prayer is a continuous expression of our commitment in prayer to each other. It runs throughout the year so that the work and members of each area in which Mothers’ Union is active is prayed for at some point. On the third Thursday of each month a Corporate Eucharist for Mothers’ Union is held in church. In the Wave of Prayer, Birmingham is linked with Seychelles, Bukedi in Uganda, Enugu in Nigeria, and Marathawada in India.
Mothers’ Union action overseas
Mothers’ Union is a Christian international family charity with over 4 million members dedicated to promoting marriage and supporting family life. It realises that the wellbeing of the family cannot be separated from the welfare of wider communities and therefore undertakes ground-breaking community work in over 83 countries. Mothers’ Union groups identify community needs at local level and form projects to address these. In a number of countries, the work of members is supported and nurtured by professional workers. These are known as Community Development Coordinators and their training and direction is facilitated by the central charity.
Whilst members come from all denominations, Mothers’ Union as an organisation is usually based in the context of the Anglican Church.
Wherever they are in the world, members all strive towards one unified vision, that of a world where God’s love is shown through loving, respectful and flourishing relationships.
Promoting social justice is key for Mothers’ Union: speaking out on issues which adversely affect family life, common threads across different countries are gender equality, gender based violence, early marriage and tackling poverty.