The Diocese of Cashel, Ferns & Ossory
The United Diocese of Cashel, Ferns and Ossory consists of the following Dioceses and Unions/Groups:
- Diocese of Cashel ~ Cashel Union, Kilcooley & Fertagh Union and Templemore Union of Parishes
- Diocese of Waterford ~ Waterford Union
- Diocese of Lismore ~ Fiddown Union, Clonmel Union and Lismore Union
- Diocese of Ossory ~ Castlecomer Union, Clonenagh Group, Kells Union with Inistioge, Kilkenny Union and Rathdowney Union
- Diocese of Leighlin ~ Abbeyleix & Killmernogh Union, Baltinglass Group, Carlow Union, Killeshin Union, Dunleckney Union, Fenagh/Myshall/Aghade/Ardoyne Union, Kiltegan Group, Leighlin Union, Portlaoise & Ballyfin Union, Stradbally Union and Tullow Group
- Ferns Diocese ~ Ardamine/Kilnamanagh/Monamolin Group, Bunclody Union, Enniscorthy & Monart Union, Ferns Union, Gorey Group, Killanne/Killegney Union, New Ross/Fethard Union, Tinahely/Carnew Union and Wexford/Kilscoran Union
Mothers' Union Branches in the Diocese
Cashel, Ferns & Ossory
- Branches ~ Cashel, Lismore, Kilcooley/Fertagh and Templemore
- Branches ~ Castlecomer, Kilkenny, Mountrath and Rathdowney
- Branches ~ Abbeyleix, Ballyfin, Bagnelstown, Carlow, Kiltegan, Old Leighlin and Tullow
- Branches ~ Ardamine/Kilnamanagh, Ballycanew/Leskinfere/Monamolin, Bunclody, Enniscorthy, Ferns, Gorey, Killanne/Killegney, New Ross/Fethard-on-Sea and Wexford
You may become a Member of Mothers' Union by joining one of the Branches listed above or by becoming a Diocesan Member. All contact details are available from the Diocesan Secretary: Cecily Jones
Cashel, Ferns, Ossory ~ Mothers' Union
Officers for 2023
- Diocesan President – Lesley Bayley (2023-24)
- Diocesan Secretary – Cecily Jones
- Diocesan Treasurer – Cathy Walsh
- Vice President Finance and Central Services – Revd. Patricia Coleman
- Unit Co-ordinator Finance and Central Services – Cecily Jones
- Vice President Faith and Policy – Revd. Margaret Sykes
- Unit Co-ordinator Faith and Policy – Revd. Canon Trevor Sargent
- Social Policy Representative ~ Linda Ward
- Diocesan Chaplain – Revd. Ger James
- Indoor Members Representative – Vivien Black
- Vice President Action and Outreach – Kathleen Rothwell
- Unit Co-ordinator Action and Outreach – Valerie Power
- MU Enterprise – Naomi Besanson
- Vice President Fundraising and Communications – Margaret Jacob
- Unit Co-ordinator Fundraising and Communications – William Bayley
- Training Officer – Phyllis Grothier
A Brief History of The Mothers' Union
The Mothers Union was formed in 1876 by Mary Sumner whose husband was Rector in Winchester at the time, and later became a Bishop. The organisation spread quickly, as many of the ladies involved, were army officers wives and when they went abroad started branches.
The first Mothers Union Branch in Ireland was formed in Raheny in 1887, by the Rector's wife Mrs Annabella Hayes in affiliation with Winchester Diocese. In 1901 the Bishop and Mrs Sumner visited Ireland.
The oldest Branch in The United Diocese of Cashel, Ferns & Ossory is Wexford Branch where early records state that a Branch was formed in 1892 with a membership of five. This was prior to setting up a Diocesan organisation in 1904, so the Branch was affiliated to Dublin. The next two Branches which were formed in the United Diocese were Lismore in 1894 and Kilkenny in 1895.
A new Diocesan Banner was designed and made by Frances Bradley when the United Diocese was named Cashel, Ferns, Ossory. The Banner was dedicated at the Festival Service in Enniscorthy in May 2015.
The latest Branch was formed in 2107 and it is in Old Leighlin.
Frances Bradley & Margaret Sykes
with the New Diocesan Banner
The beautiful banner was created by Frances
The Indoor members in the Diocese are looked after by Vivien Black. Vivien keeps in regular contact with indoor members sending them cards and letters on special occasions, visiting them and organising Afternoon Tea Parties. Please keep Vivien informed with news about your Indoor members through our Diocesan Secretary or Diocesan President.
The Prayer Chain
The Prayer Chain is also greatly valued by members in the Diocese. Names are included in prayers for a month unless the prayer chain is notified to the contrary.
The Prayer Chain is coordinated by the Faith & Policy coordinator, Revd. Canon Trevor Sargent.
Please contact any officer in your Mothers' Union Branch if you wish to have someone remembered in the Prayer Chain, and they will pass on all of the details to a member of the Prayer Chain.
Ploughing Championships 2023
This year's Ploughing Championships took place in Ratheniska, Co. Laois, from 19th to 21st September and Mothers' Union was to the forefront in providing the Baby Changing and feeding facilities at this three day event. The facilities provided by Mothers' Union are greatly appreciated by the parents/guardians of babies and toddlers as it gives them a clean, safe environment in which to tend to their child's needs. Many say that they would not be able to come to the ploughing as a family only for this facility being available.Thank you to all those who volunteered to help over the three days.
Below are some quotes from those who used the facility this year:
- "Absolute life saver! Thanks so much ladies"
- "Amazing facility, absolute life saver for us in this bad weather. Thanks a million"
- "This is the greatest stand here today. The facilities provided were far above expectations. Thanks ladies"
- "Wonderful facility, made things so easy. Very clean and staff lovely"
- "Absolutely fantastic service. Knowing you can change/feed your baby somewhere out of the wind and rain really took the stress out of coming with my 18 month old"
- "Having a baby changing/feeding area at this spot was amazing. Thank you very much. God Bless. Hope you'll be here next year"
- "Brilliant initiative. So important & thoughtful"
- "Thank you for a great service! A vital service, allowing families with young children/babies to enjoy this event"
- "Thank you so much for such a beautiful calm space full of such friendly people. So kind"
Ratheniska, Co. Laois
Above is a slideshow of pictures from the
The Subscriptions for 2023 are due in the new year. Branch Treasurers should forward the money to the Diocesan Treasurer in January.
The breakdown of your subscription, the total of which is € 40, is as follows:
NB. : Insurance for Branch Activities is covered under your subscription
- £ 21.00 to Mary Sumner House
- € 1.00 Conference fee
- £ 5.00 to run All Ireland including Insurance, office and travel
- € 10.00 to run Diocese.