Our Ladies Guild was officially founded in 1971 under the Archdiocesan Council of Catholic Women (ACCW), when our current bylaws were created. Prior to that time we were known as the Tabernacle Guild. There are records dating as far back as 1958 documenting our history here at Saint Linus. The earliest mention of our organization, which was at one time under the spiritual direction of Fr. Bernard Burns, is in a news clipping from the Southtown Economist on March 26, 1958, when the ladies ran a rummage sale fundraiser in the home of Mr. and Mrs. Frank Boblak at 10200 S. Cook Ave.
That same year the Guild is mentioned in the Chicago Economist on September 28. The Economist reported an elaborate butterfly dancing event hosted by the Tabernacle Guild named “Cho Cho Odoli”. The event was headed by Mrs. Arthur Dunne and Mrs. Anthony Beemster. The decoration committee, headed by Mrs. Edgar Kopp and Mrs. John Greener, transposed the church hall into an elaborate scene from the Far East, and included a fire breathing dragon.
This group of founding ladies did much to establish the groundwork for our current Ladies Guild organization. In the early years they held annual dinner dances. In 1971 they held what we believe to be the very first official St. Linus Ladies Fashion Show event. Attendees enjoyed a filet mignon dinner at the Martinique in Evergreen Park, followed by a fashion show presented by Mary Velente. Participants were offered a variety of prizes, including a weekend in the Bahamas. The ladies who chaired the event for the guild were Mrs. Norman Lindh, Mrs. Gerald Venkus, and Mrs. James Zalusky. But St. Linus historians tell us that there was another fashion show, a few years earlier. Back in May of 1968, the Guild held an installation evening which included dinner at Halleran’s on 103rd and Cicero, followed by a fashion show of home sewn clothes.
The Guild has had various ministries over the years. In the early days they had a medical mission committee. They also held an annual “Silver Tea” to honor the Felician Sisters who taught at Saint Linus School.
The Purpose of the Ladies Guild
According to our bylaws, our purpose has always been to help our members develop devotion of Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament and to venerate Our Lady of Good Counsel. We seek to create opportunities that will encourage spiritual growth and acts of charity for our members throughout the year. This simply means that we encourage regular mass attendance, hold events that offer opportunities for spiritual growth, and focus a large portion of our time on charitable work, both in our parish and in the world we live in. But our active members will tell you that being a part of this organization does far more than encourage church attendance and spiritual growth. When you join and volunteer yourself for service you will experience a real joy in giving, true friendships, fun times, and much camaraderie with women of all ages.
Fundraising: In 2014 and 2015 our Ladies Guild had banner years for fundraising, under the direction of former President and Vice President Mrs. Julie Cooper. We kicked off two new and highly successful fundraising events: a 5K Turkey Trot in November, and a Live Kentucky Derby Party in May. Both events were held at Saint Linus Parish. Through the generous support of area businesses as well as school families, parishioners, and members of the community, we were able to raise nearly $40,000 both years for our parish, school, and community. One such community member was Beverly’s own Emily Beazley, a 12 year old girl stricken with pediatric cancer who succumbed to her illness this past May. Our 2014 fall 5K fundraiser donated $1,000 to Emily’s family, and in 2015 we were able to give her foundation “Emily’s Cure It Foundation chapter” $1,660 to fund pediatric cancer research. In 2016-17, both our 5K fundraiser and our Kentucky Derby Party will be organized and hosted by St. Linus School. Our upcoming Ladies Guild fundraisers will benefit the service and spiritual needs of our various parish organizations as well as our community.
Social Justice: We have both a Pro-life committee and a fair trade committee that work to provide aid to those in need.
Spiritual Growth Opportunities: Our monthly meetings begin with a formal prayer, and after our minutes we offer a short program as well as additional time for socializing. In the fall we are sponsoring a living rosary event. During the start of the Lenten season we offer a special Night of Reflection. We focus on scripture to quiet the noise in our lives and prepare us for our Lenten journeys.
Service: Our chapter has an “Our Lady’s Volunteers” committee dedicated to offering service for our very own parishioners in need. This committee also oversees the much loved “Honor Guard” that has brought joy to many grieving families over the years at St. Linus Parish. The Honor Guard is offered to the deceased immediate family member living in the household of an active Ladies Guild member. Active members who pass away are also honored with a special “Our Lady of Good Counsel” pin and a special mass card from the Guild.
Eligibility for Membership
Women of all ages in Saint Linus Parish, whether they are married or single, are eligible to join. So what are you waiting for? Join us!
Our Ladies Guild meets officially once a month with planned meetings from September through May. During months where we have events scheduled we typically do not also hold a regular meeting. We use the church bulletin, our email newsletter, and social media to get the word out to our members about upcoming meetings. Why not follow us on Facebook?