Catholic woman, working together, for the good of the Church

This article was posted on: December 27, 2016

Getting involved at your local parish, deanery, diocese, national or even international level of Councils of Catholic Women not only strengthens your personal

faith but further strengthens the Church

Parish Council of Catholic Women

Kathy Herfel (front) and her fellow PCCW members gather in from of the altar at Sacred Heart Parish, Mondovi

Kathy Herfel (front) and her fellow PCCW members gather in from of the altar at Sacred Heart Parish, Mondovi

I didn’t grow up with women who belonged to their Altar or Rosary Societies in my first parish, Holy Mother of Consolation in Oregon, WI, but realized as a young adult how important it is to have groups of Catholic women working side by side for the good of the Church, to share the faith, have fun, and to simply be of service to others. Belonging actively to Councils of Catholic Women at all levels has been so rewarding to me and has grounded me in my faith. During the few years in my life when I was between parishes and wasn’t involved, there was a void in my life. Your local PCCW is a great way to begin YOUR journey.
– Kathy Herfel, president of La Crosse Diocesan Council of Catholic Women (DCCW), member of Sacred Heart Parish, Mondovi

Deanery Council of Catholic Women

Serving on the deanery level of the Council of Catholic Women organization can be both challenging and rewarding. Challenging because you are called to serve not just the ladies in your single parish but women in several parishes. On the deanery level you are both a receiver and disperser of important information, keeping the lines of communication open between the Parish Councils of Catholic women and the diocesan councils. Members of the deanery board of directors also serve as role models, encouraging those on the parish level to share their faith, time and service on a broader scale. The rewards of opening oneself to service on the deanery level far outweigh the responsibilities. God does not call the qualified, he qualifies the called. Praying and sharing with faith-filled women offers rewards beyond measure.
– Bonnie Langreck, Thorp Deanery President, member of St. Mary Parish, Neillsville

Diocesan Council of Catholic Women

I was first exposed to the diocesan level of the councils of Catholic Women when I was the deanery president. Coming to the diocesan meetings, I learned that our councils are part of something much larger than our own corner of the world. Our Diocesan CCW work is really aimed at helping the ladies in each and every parish in our diocese as well as around the globe. We raise money for Project Milk which sends Wisconsin milk to orphanages in Peru. Our partnership with Catholic Relief Services helps provide clean water through the Water for Life project, medical care for women and children through the Madonna Plan, and provide economic stability by creating cooperatives through Fair Trade. Within our diocese, we are battling human trafficking, helping victims of domestic violence, and helping parents keep our kids safe on the internet and social media. By being involved in the Councils of Catholic Women, I am better fulfilling what it means to be Catholic – spreading the Gospel by our lives.
– Lorraine Riedl, president-elect, La Crosse DCCW, member of Queen of the Apostles Parish, Tomah

National Council of Catholic Women

I got involved in National Council of Catholic Women (NCCW) through my parish (St. James the Greater in Eau Claire), Eau Claire Deanery, La Crosse Diocese, Province of Milwaukee and am now serving on the National Council of Catholic Women Nominating Committee. After serving as president at the parish, deanery and diocesan levels and treasurer at the province level, I missed the inspiration from working with a wide variety of women of faith. Now I serve with seven women from around the country recruiting our next candidates to be on the ballot to become the next leaders at the national level. Working with women of faith and service has blessed my life. Their broad perspective from their experiences in council provides new ideas to help me grow and serve in new ways. I had the opportunity to participate in World Union of Catholic Women’s Organization (WUCWO) Conferences in Washington, D.C. and Jerusalem as part of the NCCW. Meeting Catholic women from around the world in the Holy Land was such a rich experience. Just the exposure to their cultures and special aspects of worship gave more meaning to prayer for me. I would never have learned about the WUCWO Conferences without getting involved at the national level of Council of Catholic Women.
– Cathy Berry is on the National Nominating Committee and a member of St. James the Greater Parish, Eau Claire

World Union of Catholic Women’s Organizations

I am intrigued by how things get done worldwide. How exchanges of ideas and solutions, not only state or nationwide, but a worldwide exchange of ideas. Involvement with Catholic Women Org’s has broadened my knowledge and perspective of the Catholic faith and Catholic women, by interacting on issues and resolutions under the guidance of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) and the World Union of Catholic Women’s Org. The gift of friendships of women from around the world living with enthusiasm, inspiring others through their joys and struggles, and their life stories, (evangelizing); Catholic women who stand up on issues has brought this world of Catholic doers of the faith closer as prayer warriors and peacemakers, during these challenging times by becoming liaisons of the JOY of Jesus through this spiritual, stable, force, started by the bishops of Catholic Councils. All are intertwined in God’s mission. Through all of my years with councils, I believe I have become a better person, a better mother, wife and devoted steward of the Catholic faith.
– Diane Andraska is a member of World Union of Catholic Women Organization (WUCWO) and a member of St. Kevin Parish, Melrose


Council of Catholic Women’s Mission is:

  • We are Catholic women proclaiming the Word, through the New Evangelization “We Are Called to Witness”
  • We are a recognized partner with the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB)
  • We partner with the United Nations and Catholic Relief Services
  • We enjoy a partnership with the World Union of Catholic Women’s Org.
  • We support social action through Gospel values * We support, empower & educate Catholic women in Spirituality, Leadership and Service
  • We provide a forum for Catholic women to speak and act on matters of mutual interest
  • We make grants and scholarships available for Catholic Youth camps, other diocesan needs, etc

For more information on how to join, please visit www.ldccw.org, www.nccw.org or www.wucwo.org


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