History of “Catholic Daughters of America”

“Thereas it having been made known to the officers of the National Court of the Catholic Daughters of America that a sufficient number of eligible women residing in the City of Jacksonville in Morgan County, State of Illinois, having duly petitioned that they be chartered and authorized to organize and maintain a Court of our order, that their petition be granted.” (Taken from original charter)

Thus began the Catholic Daughters of America Court Our Saviour #1265 on June 13, 1937. The Catholic Daughters of the Americas is one of the oldest and largest organizations of Catholic women in the Americas. The Catholic Daughters of America donate to charities, administer scholarship programs and strive “to be helping hands where there is pain, poverty, sorrow or sickness.” The CDA motto is “Unity and Charity.”

The CDA was formed over 100 years ago and today numbers 75,000 dues-paying members in 1,250 local chapters, in 45 states across the country, and in Puerto Rico, Mexico, Guam, and the Virgin Islands.  Originally the name was the National Order of the Daughters of Isabella founded in 1903.  In 1921 the name changed to the Catholic Daughters of the America.

The group is proud to say they enjoy the company of each other at their meetings and they work hard for their parishes and communities. 

Deeply spiritual, together they share faith; love of God and a distinctly feminine spirituality alluded to by Pope John Paul II when he spoke of the necessity of “feminine genius” in today’s world.  Their programs include concerns of today’s church and society as well as issues that affect the well-being of women and children.

The local Catholic Daughters of America Court meets the first Thursday of each month at the Knights of Columbus Hall, 316 E. State Street, in Jacksonville at 6:00 pm.  The group boasts a membership of 120 faith filled women. Each month the program is informational and educational but also focuses on the local community. 

The slate of officers for the local Court is made up of  Reagent Patty Fitzpatrick, Vice Reagent Brenda Clanton,  Secretary Lily Steele, Treasurer Kate Taylor and Membership Chairperson Mary Phalen.   There are two fundraisers each year.  The first is the Lenten Fish Fry with the Knights of Columbus, hosting five dinners during the Lenten season.  The second is the August Salad Luncheon.  

The proceeds from our fundraising efforts benefit  RCHS/OSS Dreams, Senior Girls Scholarship, Prairieland United Way, Jacksonville food Pantry, Jacksonville Crisis Center and and various other community events.  

 The Salad  Luncheon is attended by many and requests a recipe for one of the salads that they have eaten.  We have tried to compile some of our favorite recipes in this newspaper for you to make at home.  

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