Marriage and Family Life

Lord of the Church,
Lord of all,
we consecrate ourselves and our 16 Days activities to you,
asking that, by your grace,
that they might be more than a cosmetic exercise.
Break down barriers of hesitation and reserve,
fear and suspicion,
so that there may be a true meeting together,
a building of relationships,
an establishment of trust and dialogue.
May we know your strength as we play our various roles
and may all who attend our 16 Days activities be richly blessed.
We ask this in Jesus' name.

What we do
Marriage and Family Life Promote Christian marriage, marriage preparation ...
Practical care in tough times
Practical care in tough times Caring for families in need Working in partnership ...
Activities Worldwide
Activities Worldwide Training Mothers' union Workers in their local ...
Campaigning For A Just Society
Campaigning For A Just Society Drawing attention to social concern issues ...
Prayer Prayer is at the heart of everything ...

Reference and administrative information

Republic of Ireland:
Mothers’ Union in Ireland is recognised as a Charity by the Revenue commissioners, 5161.
Registered charity number- 20007331 (Charities Regulatory Authority).

Northern Ireland:
Not registered with The Charity Commission NI as a single entity. Instead individual diocese have been registered separately.

Mothers’ Union Theme for 2020

“Building hope and confidence."

Christmas shopping online?
As we approach the festive season,
this is just a quick reminder that Amazon
will donate 0.5% to Mothers’ Union if you shop through and select Mothers’ Union
as your preferred charity to support.

If you don’t shop at Amazon but shop at M & S, Argos, and Next etc.,
you can also support Mothers’ Union on your next shop.

Encourage members to get involved with World Council of Churches campaign which is simple but profound.
Wear black on Thursdays.

Wear a pin or dress in black to declare you are part of the global movement resisting attitudes and practices that permit rape and violence.
Show your respect for women who are resilient in the face of injustice and violence. Encourage others to join you.
Often black has been used with negative racial connotations.
In this campaign Black is used as a color of resistance and resilience.

More information

Order you Mothers' Union 2020 Diary and Calendar range
From your Diocesan MUe Rep

I am an individual jam jar you can spread me on your toast
Upon a scone I’m truly delicious
Once my jam is finished, my life it is so short
Could I be recycled?

Now my inside is all a jingle
My heart is full of joy
Those ladies from the MU have given me a task
To help raise lots of money!

Why not Reuse & recycle your small jam jars for Overseas!

Thank you to our Mothers' Union Knitters You to do a tremendous job and it is much appreciated

Order you Christmas Cards
From your Diocesan MUe Rep

Hello Everyone,

As I was walking along Castlerock beach yesterday, in the glorious winter sunshine with the sea startlingly blue to my left and acres of golden sand around me, I once again thought how fortunate we in Ireland are to be able to “escape” to so many beautiful and peaceful places with quite little effort. We have not only startlingly beautiful beaches, but throughout this island there hills, dales, forests or gardens close to every centre of population (and sometimes within them) to which we can go to avoid or just reflect on - even for a short time - the pressures of daily life. My walk yesterday had the purpose of getting some overdue exercise (even though it was absolutely freezing!) and of putting the last few weeks in context – “regrouping”, to use common parlance. I was also escaping from the stress of Christmas shopping, but unfortunately that has to happen at some point in the next few weeks!

During November I seem to have been away on Mothers’ Union business more than I have been at home. There have been services, speaking engagements, meetings and more meetings….We had a full week of the latter at Mary Sumner House which involved all the Worldwide Trustees; when they journey from as far afield as Australia and Sri Lanka we have to make the most of their presence. Besides learning about the work colleagues are leading in their various worldwide zones, we made a number of key decisions. These were reached on behalf of MU members worldwide and many related to the strategic plan for the next three years. Basically, it means that in future all MU activities will be grouped into four main areas: transforming lives, nurturing membership, building firm foundations and accessing necessary resources.

Decisions were also reached on budgets, safeguarding, policy and advocacy, reorganising priorities within development programmes and about our “home” at Mary Sumner House. The Trustees agreed that we should seek planning permission from Westminster Council to renovate MSH – essentially that could involve making the building “fit for purpose” in the twenty-first century and, in the longer term, bring in significant income from the building which is in a prime London situation. I serve on the central Property Committee which brought forward the recommendation to proceed to planning - we have achieved a great deal in the past few months but have much more yet to do. If the planning permission is granted, the Trustees next year will have to take final decisions about whether to proceed with the works; prior to that, of course, it will be essential to have detailed financial evaluations and staff consultation.

Much of our work in Ireland in November has centred around the annual “16 Days of Activism” campaign and our thanks are due to Jacqui Armstrong (now Diocesan President of Derry and Raphoe) for continuing her wonderful mission of preparing resources, prayers, services and presentations for us to use in all twelve dioceses. MU in Ireland leads the field in raising awareness of the scourge of gender violence and we are so indebted to Jacqui for all her work. I spoke on this subject at the service held in Navan on 23 November for the members in Meath and Kildare. It was a moving service with a significant contribution by a staff member from the local women’s aid centre. However, most memorable for me was the special circle of 16 candles one of which was lit each time a prayer was said.

The Worldwide Trustees were invited by the Dean of Canterbury Cathedral to attend a service of Holy Communion on the Sunday prior to our recent November week of meetings. The Very Revd Robert Willis proved to be great fan of Mothers’ Union and in his welcome to us at the service in the Cathedral, he referred to Mothers’ Union members worldwide as courageous social evangelists. That is exactly what we aim to do in many fields in Ireland and no more so than in supporting and advocating for gender justice through the “16 days” campaign and also through our recent decision to support the on-going World Council of Churches initiative “Thursday in Black”. I wear black each Thursday to show that I am part of the global movement resisting attitudes and practices that permit rape and violence - I hope you will too.

Next year will be an exciting - and busy - one for all of we MU members in Ireland. Firstly, the new Worldwide President, Sheran Harper from Guyana, will be with us in March to attend a conference organised for All Ireland Diocesan Trustees. The day the conference ends, Sunday 29 March, Sheran will be the speaker at a very special choral evensong service to be held in St Patrick’s Cathedral Dublin, when we will welcome her to Ireland and celebrate the work and witness of Mothers’ Union across the globe. Every member is welcome to join us for that service.

In September the General Meeting for members in Britain and Ireland will be held in Belfast, with services of Holy Communion in St Anne’s Cathedral on the previous evening - Friday 25th September. There will also be a concert on the Saturday evening of the General Meeting. Again, every member can attend any of the services or events and I do hope that you will do so. There will be more detailed information available in the spring.

As we move toward Christmas, there is of course much important activity in our local branches - Christmas events and meals, visits to Indoor Members, supporting parish work with the elderly and lonely and perhaps even Christmas tree or other “seasonal” festivals! Whatever you may be doing, I hope you feel the joy of this wonderful Advent season and I would like to take this opportunity to wish you, you family and friends a very blessed Christmas and peace and good health in 2020.

I love this short prayer by Mother Theresa as it also reflects how we in Mothers’ Union reach out and show real love to others all year round:

“Lord Jesus, Help me to welcome you this Christmas, not in the cold manger of my heart, but in a heart full of love and humility, a heart warm with love for others”.


With love

Mothers' Union is an international Christian charity that seeks to support families of all faiths and none through practical outreach, prayer and advocating family friendly policies within both government and public life. By supporting marriage and family life, especially through times of adversity, we tackle the most urgent needs challenging relationships and communities.

Our members are not all mothers, or even all women, but are single, married, parents, grandparents or young adults who are just beginning to express their social conscience. For all 4.1 million members in 83 countries what Mothers' Union provides is a network through which they can serve Christ in their own community through prayer, financial support and actively working at grassroots level in programmes that meet local needs. Readmore


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