Catholic Daughters of the Americas 55th Biennial National Convention
Wednesday, July 16, 2014
By Tom Panas, Public Relations Director
The afternoon began with National Executive Director Mary Impellizeri announcing from the dais the names of state and territorial courts while a representative from each processed into the room carrying her state flag which she placed on a table in front of the dais.
This was followed by an introduction of the National Directors wearing purple jackets and purple cowboy hats who processed into the room and took their seats on the dais. Then the National Officers were also announced and walked down the aisle and took their seats on the dais.
Anne Nelson then said, “The Fifty-Fifth Biennial Convention of the Catholic Daughters of the Americas is called to order.” She asked that everyone stand for the posting of the colors. A three-member color guard dressed in white entered carrying the American flag, followed by three banner bearers in white carrying the Catholic Daughter Unity and Charity banner (all six were members of Court St. Cecelia #1151, Billings, Montana). The gathering then recited the Pledge of Allegiance and sang the Star-Spangled Banner.
National Chaplain Rev. Stephen Gosnell, K.H.S., began The Crowning of the Blessed Mother with opening remarks, saying, “Never be afraid to be generous with Christ.” The crowning was performed by Audrey Albaugh of Court Columbia #2, Pennsylvania, the oldest Catholic Daughter court.
National Regent Anne Nelson said, “We will stand strong and proud as Catholic Daughters living and working in Unity and Charity,” adding that “on every continent except Antarctica our Catholic Daughter insignia is seen.” Anne Nelson introduced the Mayor of Billings, Thomas Hanel, who said, “You do not know how pleased I am to see you this afternoon. When you come to Billings, we only ask one thing: that you spend a lot of money. [Laughter]. Seriously, I respect why you’re here, what you stand for, and I thank you very much.”
Carol Schaff, State Regent of Montana, then said, “What an honor it is to be inviting all of you to the great state of Montana in the city of Billings. People said with only nine small courts we couldn’t do it, but we did it!” Second Vice National Regent Olga Samaniego responded, “I have been privileged to work with many of the Montana Committee members. They have been making me feel at home for the last two years.”
Briefings were given on parliamentary procedure and the role of the delegates, and the timekeepers were acknowledged. National Director Margi Oller reviewed the convention packet. New York State Regent Mary Ziesig gave the credentials report. Jackie Ringo explained the Standing Rules of the Convention. Emily Guilherme moved to adopt the Convention agenda and it was accepted subject to changes.
Olga Samaniego presented a Campus Court Special Report, concluding that “it is very important that the Campus Courts operate as a truly Catholic Daughter organization. If Campus Court members learn Catholic Daughter values and procedures they will want to continue as Catholic Daughters when they graduate.”
Lois Nelson, Chairman of the Nominating Committee, announced the nominees for National Officers. Approved were National Regent-Elect Helene Shepard; First Vice National Regent Olga Samaniego; and Second Vice National Regent Sherry Nilles. The nominating committee had chosen National Director Mary Ann Kizer for the position of National Secretary-Treasurer; National Director Vickie Feist was nominated from the floor for this position.
National Director nominees chosen by the Nominating Committee were Carolyn Bachman, Trinidad Cantu, Letty Calvetti, Joyce Ann Fleming, Ruth Guidry, Susan Mone and Sheila Storey. Nominations from the floor for the position of National Director were Margi Oller, Jo Hammen and Janet Martineau. Members of the 2016 Nominating Committee were announced.
National Director Joyce Ann Fleming announced the winners of the Education Contest. National Director Vickie Feist announced the winners of newsletter and website contests. Father Michael Schummer gave the closing prayer, “Watch over us, Lord, guide us and protect us and keep us always united in your Sacred Heart.”
Glimpses of Convention Highlights
National Regent-Elect Shirley Seyfried becomes the National Regent in 30 days
Skill-building activity during the Leadership Workshop on Tuesday
First Vice National Regent Helene Shepard in costume at her Leadership Workshop on Tuesday
National Regent Anne Nelson poses with Tenor Mark Forrest who performed a concert on Tuesday evening
Tenor Mark Forrest singing Ave Maria
A member of our beloved clergy, Rev. Jim Sichko, presents the Spirituality Workshop on Wednesday.
National Regent Anne Nelson presents a Candle on Wednesday for the Adoration/ Benediction, the conventions first Liturgical Service
First Vice National Regent Helene Shepard processes into the ballroom waving the purple Cowgirl hat. All National Board members wore ‘Montana style hats’ during the opening introductions of Convention
The Color Guard Posts Colors for the opening ceremony of the Convention.
National Director Vickie Feist presents the Website Workshop on Tuesday
National Director Mary Ann Kizer welcomes delegates to the Membership Workshop on Tuesday.
The Shrine of the Blessed Mother was crowned following the presentation of the State Flags by each state.
Photos may be downloaded by left clicking on the photo to enlarge it. Then, right clicking on the enlarged photo and selecting save image. Photos by Terrie Vacek.