MOTHERS UNION in the Diocese of Malaita over the weekend  from 28th – 30th June held a historic and joyous celebration marking its 100-year Centenary at Fiu village, approximately 10 kilometers west of Auki town.

The theme for this momentous occasion was “Serving God with a pure heart, moving from strength to strength.”

More than 3,000 MU members from the six regions in the Diocese of Malaita, along with visiting members from the Diocese of Central Melanesia, Diocese of Central Solomons, Diocese of Hanuato’o, Diocese of Guadalcanal, Diocese of Ysabel, and Bishop Patteson Theological College Kohimarama attended the celebration. The Provincial Mothers’ Union president, Mrs. Rosemary Sahu, and her team from the MU Provincial office in Honiara, as well as representatives from Australia and New Zealand were also present to witness this remarkable and historic event.

The festivities began on Friday evening with an opening and welcome service at Christ the King Cathedral, Fiu Village. During this service, Diocesan Mission Secretary Rev. Stanbul Kuru shared a reflection based on Philippians 1:6, emphasizing the assurance that God, who has initiated a good work, will faithfully bring it to completion. This message resonated deeply with the MU members, highlighting the divine guidance behind their century-long mission.

Mrs. Catherine Lamani, the outgoing president of the MU in the Diocese of Malaita and a key organizer of the celebration, shared the rich history of the MU in the diocese during the service. She paid tribute to the vision and dedication of Gwendoline Mason and other pioneers who laid the foundation for the MU’s enduring legacy.

“The celebration we came for this weekend is because of the vision and inspiration of Gwendoline Mason and others who have gone 100 years before us,” Mrs. Lamani stated. “Gwendoline’s vision and dedication have left a lasting legacy, and so this celebration is not just a reflection of 100 years of service but also a tribute to the pioneering spirit of Gwendoline Mason and the countless women who followed in her footsteps, continuing the work she began.”

The Right Reverend Michael Sau Bebeu, Bishop of the Diocese of Malaita, acknowledged all MU leaders and members, especially those who traveled from other dioceses, the Provincial MU President and her team, and the MU representatives from Australia and New Zealand. “As we reflect on this significant milestone, we remember Gwendoline’s legacy, who a century ago had a vision and courage to establish the MU Ministry in Malaita,” said Bishop Bebeu. “Her pioneering spirit laid the foundation for generations of women to serve God with pure hearts, moving from strength to strength.”

Saturday was the highlight of the three-day long program, featuring a colorful parade by around 400 MU members from the six regions in the Diocese of Malaita and their senior priests and members of the Girls Friendly Society (GFS) – a young women’s organization operating under the MU.

The parade proceeded from Fiu Village to the Fiu football ground, where flag raising, singing of the MU anthem and speeches took place. This was followed by the blessing and dedication of the Gwendoline Mason memorial plaque in front of Christ the King Cathedral. MU groups from the six regions also showcased their products and produce, providing a vibrant display of their contributions to the community.

The celebration concluded on Sunday morning with a Holy Eucharist service where Rev. Helen Aston, Guest of Honor to the Centenary from the MU in New Zealand shared a wonderful sermon based on Mark 5:21-43 where she emphasized on the power of faith and the compassion of Jesus in responding to the needs of those who are suffering.

She also encouraged the MU members to continue their work with dedication, compassion, and faith just as Jesus brought healing and restoration to those in need to make positive impact in the lives of individuals, families, and communities around as well as to those who are marginalized and vulnerable in our societies.

The program ended with feasting, speeches, gift presentations, and entertainments. The event was a testament to the enduring faith and dedication of the MU members and a fitting tribute to a century of service and community building.

The centenary celebration not only honored the past achievements of the MU but also inspired a renewed commitment to continue serving God with pure hearts, drawing strength from faith and community as they move towards greater heights in their mission and ministry.


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