By J. F. FIELDING Miss Barbara Ward must find her nat ive Yorkshire air exhilarating. She makes public speaking seem such an easy and g raceful art. As National President of the Catholic Women's League, she spoke to an audience of 500 women at the annual meeting at Leeds on Saturday of the West Riding branch. She looked as fresh as the proverbial daisy at the close and her voice had lost nothing of its bell-like clarity and appeal.
She covered the whole field of C.W.L. activities and touched on no subject which she did not illuminate with cogent phrase piquant illustration or subtle humour.
PUBLIC SERVICE.—Do we pull our weight in accordance with our strength ? Whenever we hear of someone ambitious to enter public life do we exclaim—" What. Mrs. So-and-so "
CHRISTIAN CHAROTY.—There was a time when it could be truthfully said—" How these Christians love one another." We must strive for the time when " How these Catholics love one another " could be truthfully said of us.
LOVE OF NEIGHBOUR.—lt is a terrifying obligation to love our neighbour. "Some neighbours are so unlovable you feel like pushing their face in." But the obligation is one we must fulfil, and of which we shall have to give a strict account.
FORCE OF PRAYER.—There are powerful currents of prayer in the world which must be channelled if the world is to be saved.
COLLECTIONS.—Money works miracles, without it organisations would be powerless.
MEMBERSHIP.—We need twice or thrice as many members, and particularly young people who must not be barred from office.
EUROPEAN VOLUNTARY WORKERS.—She pleaded in moving terms the cause of the European Voluntary Workers who have lost their homes and families and were coming to settle amongst us. They need our love and sympathy. An International Office is to be set up In London with 25 chaplains and a National Organiser with liaison officers linking up the various Catholic societies. A monster raffle to provide funds is to be organised on legal lines.
Mgr. Poskitt, Bishop of Leeds, who presided, deplored that so many members left the work to so few. More active members were needed to make their efforts and influence felt.
Mrs. Mounsey (President) remarked the League was fortunate in having Miss Ward to guide them. She was a glutton for work and expected the members to be gluttons too.