Catholic Women of the Year 2017


The Catholic Women of the Year for 2017 have been announced. They are: Sister Mary Kenefick, Jackie Ottaway, Antonia Moffat and Kathy Kelly.

Sister Mary Kenefick, parish sister at St Patrick’s, Soho, and chaplain to students at University College, London and Brunel University. She is a former headmistress and has worked in chaplaincy with the British Army in Germany and at Heathrow Airport. Fr Stephen Wang, senior University Chaplain for the diocese of Westminster nominated her saying “she brings warmth, joy, professionalism and a deep faith to her relationships, reaching out to those unconnected with the Church and tirelessly supporting the Catholic students so they can be a confident and loving presence among their peers.”

Jackie Ottaway co-editor of The Portal, the on-line magazine of the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham. She helped to launch the project and to fund it from her own limited resources in its first few months, and contributes to each issue with interviews. Her work for the Ordinariate also includes helping to run pilgrimages and the annual Festival as well as assisting with administration of its finances. She maintains ecumenical links and since becoming a Catholic with Ordinariate in 2011, continues assisting her former Anglican parish as its treasurer.

Antonia Moffat, whose campaigning to promote devotion to Our Lady of Walsingham resulted in the establishment of a shrine in Westminster Cathedral. Antonia now works for the National Shrine at Walsingham and travels to different parishes and groups to teach the message of reviving the Faith through devotion to Our Lady under this ancient title. Her dedication and commitment have helped to ensure that a new wave of enthusiasm is gathering pace among Catholics, with a message of hope for the New Evangelisation.

Kathy Kelly who for over 25 years ran the Padre Pio Bookshop near London’s Victoria Station. She launched a prayer group meeting daily at 3pm for Divine Mercy devotions and the Rosary, and through friendship and kindness helped many who were lonely or experiencing difficulties. Her welcome and openness meant that people who had strayed from the Church or were confused in their faith found a new direction. Prayer groups will now continue at two nearby parishes, a legacy of Kathy’s devotion.

The Catholic Women of the Year are chosen annually by secret ballot by a committee drawn from the main Catholic women’s organisations in England and Wales, from nominations sent in from across the country.

The 2017 Catholic Women of the Year Luncheon will take place on Friday November 3rd at the Amba Hotel, Marble Arch. For more information contact: JoannaBogle auntiejoanna@yahoo.co.uk

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