PRESBYTERIAN WOMEN'S ASSOCIATION
The P.W.A is an organisation which provides the women of the congregation monthly meeting of Fellowship, Praise, Bible- reading and Prayer and also includes guest speakers and the planning of functions to raise funds to support missionaries and to contribute to church needs.
The minute books of the former association show that afternoon meetings were held. At that time the fund-raising events included Garden-Parties, Daffodil Teas, Sales of Work and Jumble Sales.
In the late Fifties more of the young women of the congregation were remaining in full-time employment after marriage and the membership at afternoon meetings was on the decline.
For some years, an evening meeting was introduced to alternate with the afternoon meeting, but eventually only a monthly evening meeting was held. This still remains the arrangement - from September to March the meeting is held on the second Tuesday of the month.
In March 1971 the Presbyterian Church in Ireland changed the name of the organisation to The Presbyterian Women's Association.
About this time there were changes in the events arranged to raise funds. Jumble Sales were replaced by Jumble Auctions. The Sale of Work was replaced by a Saturday Coffee Morning which proved a popular occasion in each of our City churches as the P.W.A. branches supported one another in turn.
At present there are thirty five members in Strand P.W.A who, like previous women of Strand Congregation, find the fellowship of sharing God's work in strand and also helping to support the work of Missionaries abroad, by Prayers and contributions.
The Saturday Coffee Morning is still held early in October, but with the opening of local Charity Shops, the Jumble Auctions became less profitable and the P.W.A entered the Boot Sale era.
In addition to the branch meetings the members receive invitations to Visitors' Nights at other P.W.A Branches which are an opportunity to make friends and enjoy worship together. Returning this hospitality is always a highlight of the year. A Special speaker is invited, musical item arranged and members meet the challenge of catering for perhaps eighty guests.