Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of August 28, 2006
CWL leader wants light to shine brighter
Lorette Nobel is 'eternal optimist'
By DEBORAH GYAPONG
Canadian Catholic News
Lorette Noble, the new national president of Catholic Women's League, hopes to build the organization's profile by focusing on the theme "love one another" for her two-year term.
Noble has been active in the national CWL leadership since she became Quebec's provincial president in 1993. She was installed as national president during the league's national convention in Halifax Aug. 13-16. She takes the helm from Agnes Bedard of Calgary.
In an interview, Noble said she sees her theme as a continuation and enrichment of previous themes.
Her vision, she said, is that in living out the theme "love one another," members will become more enthusiastic, and that will help others to "look at what we are and celebrate it."
Describing herself as "an eternal optimist," Noble recognized concerns about declining and aging membership.
"We have to be patient," she said. "One thing I've learned is never giving up hope and continuing to do the things we do well."
"Our strength is the wide range of topics we bring, affecting all age groups and the fact that we are nonpartisan."
While she believes Christ's love and light already show in the work the CWL does, she wants to "turn it up," and "let it shine brighter."
"It's always a challenge to bring a loving perspective to what we do," she said, pointing out that is the essence of what Christ asks us to do.
Noble, who grew up in England, came to Canada 36 years ago. She lives in Candiac, Que.. She raised four children, all of whom attended the convention's closing ceremonies when she was installed as national president. Six of her nine grandchildren also were present.
In addition to her role on the CWL executive, for the past six years until retiring in June, Noble worked for Saint-Jean-Longueuil Bishop Jacques Berthelet. While there, the diocese consolidated, and, in some cases, had to close some churches. The province of Quebec also discontinued Catholic schools.
Sign of hope
Noble said losing the Catholic schools has meant the Church in Quebec has had to reappropriate catechesis, not only for children but for whole families.
The diocese started running a Faith First program that is transforming churches into catechesis centres. While she did not expect the program to result in a "sudden explosion," it provides a solid foundation for families to be grounded in their faith.
"This is a sign of hope, a sign of the presence of the Church," she said. "What's wonderful is there is a tremendous enthusiasm. Parents are engaged and it seems to appeal to the children."
Noble has passed along her love for the CWL to her children and her community.
Candiac now boasts a national president, a provincial president and a diocesan president. "They all come from little old Candiac," she said. "That's quite something."