Catholic Women's League of Saskatchewan

2019 Provincial Convention


2018 Provincial Convention


2017 Provincial Convention


2016 Convention

Social Justice Award





71st Annual Saskatchewan CWL Provincial Convention, June  2-3, 2019

at St. Augustine Parish, Humboldt, Saskatchewan


Theme: Care for Our Common Home


The 71st annual convention of the Saskatchewan Provincial CWL opened Sunday afternoon, June 2nd with the platform guests being piped in by Margot de la Gorgendière, a member of The Cathedral of the Holy Family CWL, Saskatoon. Flag bearers for the presentation of colors were – Canadian flag (member of Humboldt cadets), CWL flag (national president, Anne-Marie Gorman) and the Saskatchewan provincial flag (provincial president, Margaret Schwab). Following the singing of O Canada, Provincial Spiritual Development chairperson, Connie Crichton, led us in the opening prayer – a reflection of gratitude for our League and for God’s wonderful creation in nature.


President Margaret Schwab welcomed everyone and acknowledged that the convention was meeting on Treaty 6 territory and home of the Metis. Greetings were brought to the convention by:  Bev Yeager - president of St. Augustine CWL, Claire Heron – Saskatoon Diocesan Spiritual Advisor, Ingrid Eggerman – Saskatoon Diocesan President, Father Peter Olisa – Spiritual Advisor for St. Augustine CWL, Kelly Block – MP for Carlton Trial/Eagle Creek and Michael Behiel – Deputy Mayor of Humboldt.


The first presentation of the day was Archbishop Emeritus, James Weisgerber, speaking on the relevance of CWL today. The Introduction of Archbishop Weisgerber was given by Chantal Devine.


Archbishop Weisgerber challenged us to be missionary disciples.  He reminded us that St. Paul said we must give an account for our hope and just as the church is changing, so the CWL must embrace change. If we believe and trust, then we will grow together in our faith.


Appreciation for the speaker was given by Susan Melchiorre.


We were very pleased to have a presentation by the 2018 Social Justice award winner, Ashlyn Froehlich. Ashlyn told us of her experience volunteering with Intercordia Canada, a non-profit organization that partners with Canadian universities in order to offer students a unique, university accredited, engaged-learning experience. She travelled to Equator, lived with a host family, and worked beside the people of Equator.  She learned the principal of working with rather than for people.


Ashlyn’s presentation was followed by the presentation by Mary Nordic, Life Member, of the 2019 provincial Social Justice award winner – Jenna Daly from Regina. Jenna was the recipient for of the entire $1000.00 award for her mission project with the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal in New York. There, fifteen young adults from across Canada will be trained in evangelistic skills and will join the Friars in their work serving the poor and marginalized and participating in the Catholic Underground movement.  Jenna wrote that she “is very excited about the opportunity to serve God and the international Church and to grow in my faith”.   Jenna has an impressive record of involvement in social justice and volunteering during her high school years in Regina and currently at St. Thomas More College (STM), University of Saskatchewan where she is involved with Just Youth, Sherbrooke Community Centre, L’ARCHE, and Best Buddies.


Mary also thanked the Social Justice committee members, Tillie Aessie and Susan Melchiorre.

President, Margaret Schwab then asked Recording Secretary, Marion Laroque to issue the call to convention for the business session to begin. Reports were heard from the Provincial President, Provincial Spiritual Advisor, Father Peter Nnanga, MSP, and the Diocesan Presidents – Prince Albert - Helen Kayfish, Regina -Yvonnee Bachelu and Saskatoon – Ingrid Eggerman. Those reports can be found here:



The business of the convention concluded for the day and we took part in our opening Mass.


The 71st annual convention of the Saskatchewan Provincial CWL began with Archbishop Emeritus James Weisgerber presiding at the Opening Mass, flanked by priests from throughout the province con-celebrating.  



Archbishop Emeritus James Weisgerber presiding at the Opening Mass, flanked by priests from throughout the province con-celebrating.


The Mass procession included National President, Anne-Marie Gorman, the provincial executive, Honorary Life Members, Life Members, diocesan presidents and spiritual advisors. The Mass celebrant and homilist was Archbishop Emeritus, James Weisgerber, the Mass was co-celebrated by Father Peter Nnanga MSP and the priests in attendance.  The collection was shared between Catholic Missions in Canada and Teen Aid Humboldt.


Following Mass, the reception and banquet were held at St. Augustine Parish Hall.  The head table guests were once again led in by Piper, Margot de la Gorgendière.  The head table guests included:  Ingrid Eggerman, Margaret Schwab, Father Peter Nnanga MSP, Archbishop James Weisgerber, Anne-Marie Gorman, Abbot Peter Novecosky, Claire Heron, Father Peter Olisa, Marlene Bodnar, UCWL, Mrs. Pat Bencharski, and Chris Bencharski, State Deputy, Knights of Columbus.


The Toast to Canada was given by Marion Laroque.  The Toast to the League was given by Helene Marceau.


The banquet Mistress of Ceremonies was Ingrid Eggerman, Saskatoon Diocesan President. Prior to the banquet, the head table guests were introduced.  Greetings were given by Marlene Bodnar, Ukrainian CWL, Chris Bencharski, State Deputy, Knights of Columbus, and Father Peter Olisa, St. Augustine parish priest.  Gifts were presented to the National President Anne-Marie Gorman, the St. Augustine CWL President, Bev Yeager, the parliamentarian Mary Nordick, and Ingrid Eggerman, Mistress of Ceremonies. Certificates of Merit were presented to each of the councils that assisted with the convention. The honorary life members, life members, provincial executive and spiritual advisors were recognized.



Life and Honorary Life Members in attendance at the convention: 

Back Row:  Tillie Aessie (LM) and Velma Harasen (HLM)  

Seated:  Joan Petracek (LM), Phyllis Kennedy (LM), and June Krogan (LM) 



Presentation of Life membership were presented by National President Anne-Marie Gorman to:

Margaret Schwab,Chantal Devine, and Susan Melchiorre.


The attendees enjoyed the entertainment supplied by Greg Marquis and Katie Nichol who sang their original songs.


The second day of the convention, Monday, June 3rd opened with prayer lead by Connie Crichton and Father Peter Nnanga, MSP. The prayer centered around the creation story from the Book of Genesis. – a perfect way to start the day with our theme of ‘Care for Our Common Home’.  In Father Peter’s reflection, he encouraged us to bear fruit as members of the CWL – to be patient when considering disbanding. If we are patient, we will see what grows as did the gardener in the parable from the Gospel of Luke, chapter 13.


The business meeting reconvened.  Florence Paquette, Saskatchewan Pro Life Association gave us a brief talk on the movie Unplanned which is not available in Canada. (Update: Unplanned is finally getting a major Canadian release.)  Florence also reminded us of the volunteer program, Dying Healed which is an outreach to people who are medically vulnerable.


Reports by Standing Committee chairpersons were given and they can be found here:



Under the Community Life Standing Committee report, a resolution was received from The Cathedral of the Holy Family, Saskatoon Council entitled Regulating and Enforcing the Use of Electronic Logging Devices in the Commercial Trucking Industry. This resolution was passed and will be forwarded to the National council for, hopefully, inclusion at the National convention in August.




We were very pleased to have a presentation by Anne-Marie Gorman, National CWL President


The introduction of Anne-Marie was given by Ingrid Eggerman  Anne-Marie presented a workshop on our theme:  Care for Our Common Home.  Each incoming president chooses a theme for her two-year term.  Anne-Marie has been amazed at how the provinces have embraced her choice:  Care for Our Common Home, based on Pope Francis’s encyclical:  Laudato Si  We discussed the theme logo, and what it means to us. There is a YouTube video Catholic Social Teaching 101:  Care of God’s Creation that gives background information.  Anne-Marie briefly reviewed each chapter of Laudato Si and pointed out that the ecological crisis is not a scientific or economic problem, but rather a moral problem.  Members were given questions regarding environmental considerations past, present and future to discuss at each table followed by sharing with the entire group. The appreciation for the speaker was given by Marion Laroque.



A note of business that councils need to be aware of is that the motion to increase the provincial pre capita amount of the membership fees from $4.00 to $7.00 effective in the membership year of 2020 was carried. This will affect the amount councils will charge for upcoming membership fees. 

The election results for the incoming provincial executive were revealed by Life Member, Tillie Aessie who has spent many hours making phone calls to urge people to take on positions. The provincial executive is very grateful to Tillie for this service.



Front Row, left to right: Marilyn Schuck (Christian Family Life), Chantal Devine (Prov. president), Father Peter Nnanga (Prov. spiritual advisor), Anne-Marie Gorman (National CWL President), Connie Crichton (president-elect and Organization, Marian Zsombor (Community Life), June Gorgchuck (Education and Health).
Middle and Back Row together, left to right: Shirley Lamoureux (Legislation), Yvonne Bachelu (Regina Diocesan President), Helene Marceau (treasurer), Marion Laroque (recording and corresponding secretary), Marge Appell (Communications), Susan Melchiorre (Life Member, Resolutions and Life Member liaison), Helen Kayfish (Prince Albert Diocesan President), Ingrid Eggerman (Saskatoon Diocesan President)


Provincial Executive 2019-2021 is as follows:


President - Chantal Devine

Spiritual Advisor - Fr. Peter Nnanga MSP

Past President/Archivist – Margaret Schawb

Organization/President Elect - Connie Crichton

Spiritual Development/First Vice President - Marlene VanDresar

Christian Family Life/Second Vice President - Marilyn Schuck

Recording/Corresponding Secretary - Marion Laroque

Treasurer - Helene Marceau

Community Life - Marian Zsombor

Communications - Marge Appell

Legislation - Shirley Lamoureux

Resolutions - Susan Melchiorre

Life Member Liaison - Susan Melchiorre


Honorary member, Claire Heron reported on the CWL Leadership Foundation. The first cohort of women have successfully completed this year and the candidates for the next year were in Ottawa at their first session which began this weekend. We are very pleased the two members from Saskatchewan were chosen to attend this second session – Janette Rieger, Regina and Shannon Granger, Saskatoon.


Prince Albert Diocesan President very ably invited us to join them in Prince Albert for the 2020 provincial convention to be held on May 31st to June 1st. The convention will be hosted by Sacred Heart council and those of the surrounding area. This should be a great convention as we celebrate not only our 72 years as a provincial council, but the 100 years as a National organization!


The meeting concluded with the retirement of colors and the singing of ‘God Save the Queen’.

We were very pleased to have Abbot Peter Novecosky preside at our closing mass.



Abbot Peter Novecosky presiding at the Clo  sing Mass with provincial spiritual advisor Fr. Peter Nnanga 
and other priests from the province con-celebrating.


The mass included the celebration of the installation of the new provincial executive led by outgoing past president, Jean Reader and provincial Spiritual Advisor, Father Peter Nnanga, MSP.



Margaret Schwab (immediate past-president), Chantal Devine (president), Connie Crichton (president-elect and Organization chair), Marlene VanDresar (Spiritual Education chair), Marilyn Schuck (Christian Family Life chair), Marion Laroque (recording and corresponding secretary), Helene Marceau (treasurer), Marian Zsombor (Community Life chair), June Gorgchuck (Education and Health chair), Marge Appell (Communications chair), Shirley Lamoureux (Legislation chair), Susan Melchiorre (Resolutions chair and Life Member Liaison).  Standing at the podium:  Jean Reader, outgoing past president.