'Without family, without home, life becomes empty'

By Madelaine McDonald

What a wonderful result on the Assisted Dying Bill, which was defeated in Parliament by 330 votes to 118. Our Members of Parliament are to be congratulated on this outcome, and so are we. A great pat on the back should go to all those who wrote to their MP, even if yours actually supported the Bill, as I am sure that each letter made an impression. It is a great outcome for the sick, the elderly and the vulnerable, and an answer to many, many prayers. However, we must remain vigilant as the issue will undoubtedly be brought up in Parliament again. If your MP voted against the Bill, could they be sent a thank you card to encourage them in the future?

• Members of the UCM committee have been on a recruitment drive to our churches in Widnes. Four of their eight churches have closed, and the remaining four are united under the umbrella parish of St Wilfrid. This has been a massive upheaval for all concerned and our visit included a meeting at the John Dalton building to offer support to the existing foundations. The ladies of Saint Pius X and St John Fisher will join together, along with any new members, in the new St Wilfrid’s foundation and we pray that this will become an established and vibrant foundation echoing their past successes.

• Wasn’t it wonderful to read of Pope Francis's successful visits to Cuba and the United States? Much of his address to the congregations was concerned with family life. He said: "Families are an opportunity that we must protect and care for. Without family, without the warmth of home, life becomes empty." I think he must have been reading the UCM's aims and objectives!