Ohio News

Dublin was the scene for this year’s Ohio State Convention. Dublin, Ohio, not the other one! The Columbus AOH/LAOH team, led by Judy Leedy and Ron Hagan, put on a great convention that went without a hitch. Several National Officers honored us with their presence and shared their wisdom and insights with us. They included LAOH National President Maureen Shelton, Secretary Susan  Lauster and appointees Kathy Linton (also past president)  and Marilyn Madigan. The women of the Ohio Board bring a lot of experience to the table. New to the Board this year are Jenn Namsick and Mary Beth Chrystal, both excited to make a contribution. The following are the newly elected Ohio State Board.

Back row: Kathie Linton, Past National President; Teresa Kowalski, Missions and Charities; Jennifer Hansick, Catholic Action; Marilyn Madigan, National750 Club and Sue Lauster, National Secretary

Front Row: Mary Beth Chrystal, Treasurer; Clara Joyce, Secretary; Maureen Shelton, National President;  Eloise Stalter, State President and  Maire Manning, Vice President


Hibernian Relief CD

As Hibernians around the country pledged their support to the Sandy Hurricane victims Rebecca Davey from the LAOH, Summit County, Ohio decided we needed to do more.  AOH member Denny Parks wished Ohio was closer so he could offer hands on assistance to his brothers and sisters as part of the Hibernian weekend work crew. Thoughts like these sparked Rebecca’s idea for a Hibernian Relief Music CD “Hibernians helping Hibernians”, and the two are co-chairing the joint effort for the Ohio AOH-LAOH State Boards.

The project began with a request for donated songs from Hibernian Bands and Musicians as well as Bands and Musicians who work closely with Hibernians around the country. By the time this article was written groups and individuals from Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, and New Jersey have already contacted the two. We are sure to hear from many more around the country willing to offer their songs as well as production assistance. Anyone interested in helping can contact Rebecca and Denny directly: RDAVEY321@YAHOO.COM; DPARKS121@YAHOO.COM .

HOW CAN YOU HELP? Right from the start you can recruit you local bands and musicians to join the cause. 100% of the proceeds will go to Hibernian Charities Disaster Relief assisting the Hibernians who have lost so much in the storm. The second way to help is contact Denny Parks (dparks121@yahoo.com) and order CD’s that you will sell at your local division. The projected cost of a CD is $20. We hope to have the first CD out to AOH and LAOH Divisions in time to sell them during the Green Season. If all goes well there may be a second CD out as we approach the convention season.  Please join in this great effort to help the Hibernians suffering the consequences of Hurricane Sandy.

Thank you

Deleware News

Black Friday Dog Day: For the Seventh Year Members of Corporal Bernard McCarren Division in Newark, Delaware sold hot dogs and sodas to hungry holiday shoppers at Boscov’s Department Store in Christiana, Delaware on Black Friday. Volunteering from 5 AM to 5 PM Delaware Hibernians raised over $1,000 to benefit charities in their community. Excess inventory was donated to Holy Family Parish Outreach at the end of the evening.

Pictured: (L to R) Richard Magner, John Lynch, Ed Hageman, Joe Conway, Dan Conway, Tom Quirk and Ryan Quirk.

Pictured: (L to R) Richard Magner, John Lynch, Ed Hageman, Joe Conway, Dan Conway, Tom Quirk and Ryan Quirk.

President Maureen Shelton

At this time of year we are beginning to prepare for our St. Patrick’s Day festivities; however, we must not forget our patron, St. Brigid, whose feast day is February 1st.  She does not get the notoriety of St. Patrick but St. Brigid was known for the many ways she helped those in need. It seemed she always was able to provide for anyone who needed help. As LAOH members, we carry on her works today. There is no end of the amount of charities that our members are involved in as we continue to help others as our patron saint did centuries ago.  I hope that you all receive special blessings as you celebrated St. Brigid’s feast day.

As Sister and Brother Hibernians, we came together once again to help with the relief effort for the Hurricane Sandy victims. I know that everyone will continue to as generous as they can be to help with this cause. This will be an ongoing relief effort; it may not all be monetary but our members are there to help one another any way they can.  We can all be proud to say we are Hibernians.

As March approaches it will be a busy time for many St. Patrick feast day celebrations. Please remember that this is a holy day for us. We celebrate St. Patrick and we are Irish 365 days a year, unlike those who all just want to be Irish on March 17th. Keep an eye out for offending materials that are sold at this time of year. None of us want to be portrayed in a bad light. I do not see any other nationality being portrayed in as many offensive tee shirts, cards etc. as the Irish. Stand up against this; these people are only trying to make money off of defaming us at our expense. I look forward to seeing many of my Hibernians sisters and brothers at many gatherings this March. I pray that you have a safe and holy St. Patrick’s Day.

Yours in Friendship, Unity and Christian Charity,


Massachusetts News

Members of the AOH and LAOH from Massachusetts traveled to Albany, New York to attend the presentation of the Fr. John Murphy Award from Division #5, Albany, New York to former National LAOH Freedom for All Ireland Chair, Kathleen Savage. The award is presented annually to recognize someone who has endeavored to take up the plight of the Irish people still living under English occupation in the six counties in the North of Ireland, and longing for a free and united Ireland. This is the first time that the award was given to a woman and to someone who lives outside the state of New York. Congratulations Kathleen from all Massachusetts LAOH and AOH members!

With the upcoming holidays, the LAOH in Massachusetts has been busy working with their local charities. Donations of toys and warm clothing have been distributed to many needy organizations throughout the state. Divisions have also made donations of time, cash and food to several local food pantries. Several divisions have contributed money and supplies to victims of Hurricane Sandy. We congratulate our Sisters and Brothers throughout the country for coming to the aid of members in need.

Preparations are under way for the Massachusetts joint AOH/LAOH convention in May, 2013 in Plymouth, MA. More information to follow in future issues. We hope that everyone has a Merry Christmas and a safe and Happy New Year.


Chairman, Charities and Missions

This is my final report after four years on the National Board.  I would like to thank Worthy President Boyle for appointing me to what I consider two of the most important jobs on the National Board.  That is, the Organizational Committee and the Charities and Missions Committee.

I would like to thank the State Presidents, the State Organizers and the members at large for their help bringing in 22 new Divisions, 2 new County Boards and 1 new State Board while I was National Organizer.  I could not have done that without your help.  As for the Charities and Missions, we all know that the third pillar of our motto is “ … True Christian Charity”.  And that is what we practice every time we raise money or donate our time to help others.  I am proud and thankful to all of our jurisdictions for their efforts.

These past four years under the guidance of President Boyle this National Board accomplished many milestones.  All of your National Officers performed their duties superbly.  I am honored to be associated with and to have work with these men.

I am looking forward to seeing and meeting you at the National Convention this July.  It is going to be a great time – don’t miss it.

Finally, I would like to again thank all of you for your efforts in making our Order the most outstanding Organization in the country.  And as we say in the Donegal Irish (Gaeilge Thir Chonaill),  Mo chairde, go raibh maith agaibh agus tchifidh me thu, le cuidiu De.  Slan go foill.


You recently received a set of AOH return address labels for your use. This is an effort on the part of the AOH National Board to express our appreciation for your past and anticipated support. We urge you to join us in meeting the needs of the many vital charities we have assisted over the years. Your personal donation is essential to our mission.

  • IF YOU HAVEN’T SENT A DONATION YET, please forward a check PAYABLE TO: AOH National Board.
  • Please send TEAR-OFF form that accompanied your labels to:

Ancient Order of Hibernians

P.O. Box 271

West Nyack, NY 10994

  • If you have already sent a donation, THANK YOU for your continued and generous support.
  • Please display your pride as an AOH member and at the same time promote the AOH by using your labels on your personal correspondence.

Director’s Report

It is hard to believe that December is here and that this year is almost over. With the year’s end, we all have lots to do in our Divisions. By now your elections are over and your new officers are ready to begin their duties. Thanks to all retiring Division officers for your hard work during your terms of office. Remember to get in your election and per capita reports to your County, State and National secretaries. These forms will facilitate our efforts in providing the proper information to the right people in all jurisdictions.

Keep sending in your Charities and Missions reports to me. Our Order needs to show our works on a national level. Please go to our website at www.aoh.com and print out our forms for your charitable events. The reports are self-explanatory. Fill in all requested information and send to me.

Remember to be sure that the donation you are reporting is, in fact, a charitable cause and not simply a donation. List the charity benefited in your report. Man-hours should only be reported when they are worked supporting a recognized charitable organization or event. Donations to the AOH National Board and Hibernian Charity managed funds such as FFAI, Project St. Patrick, National History Day, Hibernian Hunger, etc., are encouraged. Donations to scholarship funds are also acceptable. Don’t forget to inform your local newspaper and your church bulletins of your good works. Have information on our Order readily available at your functions. Use these as an organizing tool to bring in new members.

Please remember that in working to help those in need in your community, that no effort is too small. If you organize a function or make a donation in accordance with our guidelines, we want to hear from you.

Any questions, call or email me at  norrisaoh@aol.com or (570) 323-7789. I want to wish all Beannachtai na Nollag daoibh.

From The Editor’s Desk

I hope you enjoy this end-of-year issue of the Digest.

I think it’s important to note that more then 90 AOH and LAOH members contributed the contents of this edition. And who knows how many other brother and sister Hibernians helped them produce that copy and take and caption the photos on these pages.

It’s understandable, but wrong, to think that the newspapers and books we read, the shows we watch, the websites we visit, are things, somehow automatically produced, disembodied from the minds and hearts that informed their creation. Don’t we often refer to a newspaper article by saying “The New York Times wrote…”? We forget that some person actually wrote the story, is responsible for the research and reporting, took the time to craft the article, choose the right words, go over it and over it until it’s just right.

It’s the same with all the projects Hibernians take on and accomplish. Whether it’s the Barry Gate, Project St. Patrick, the 175th Anniversary Celebration, the 175th Commemorative Coin, the actions taken on immigration, freedom for political prisoners, and the hundreds of state, county and division charities and missions activities the Order engages in, the achievements aren’t automatic. Whatever gets done is accomplished by at least one and more typically a group of Hibernians acting in friendship and unity to perform acts of Christian Charity and other works the Order.

And why? Because those who take on the tasks believe in the Order and its good and welfare and want to build the Order up, strengthen it, expand it, and help it achieve its missions.

With this in mind, officers should remember that there may be many members at our meetings and events who are ready, willing and able to work. One of our goals as leaders should be to identify those members and figure out what we can ask them to do for the Order. Then we guide them and follow up on how they’re doing. This is how new leaders are developed. Don’t be afraid to ask someone who isn’t doing anything now to do something. No one joined the Order to sit in a meeting room once a month, right? Many are waiting to be pressed into service.


On a different matter: I’d appreciate your suggestions for how the Digest can be improved. What’s not here that you think ought to be? What’s here that you don’t like so much? What could make this better? Let me know at EditorHibernianDigest@yahoo.com.

Also, if you know of an Irish store in your community that does business online as well as locally, that you think may want to advertise in the Digest, where they could promote their products to so many Irish-American men and women, please ask them to write to me at EditorHibernianDigest@yahoo.com or send me their name and address and I’ll contact them. We need more ads in the Digest!

And while I’m on the subject of advertising, if you have sales experience and would like to help me get ads, I could use some help. Write to me and let me know if you can assist the Order in that way.

There are great articles and reports in this issue. I hope you enjoy them all.

The deadline for the next issue is December 17.

A very Merry and Holy Christmas to all!


Illinois News

The Illinois Delegates elected their State Officers for the 2011-2013 Term of Office at their 54th Biennial State Convention held in Alsip Illinois, September 16-17, 2011.

Front row, Kay Grillot—Irish Historian, Patricia A. O’Connell—President, Eileen D. O’Connell—Treasurer, Jeanne Armstrong—Missions & Charities Officer. Back row, M J “Robin” Hartman—Vice President, Norma Mall—Catholic Action Officer, and Frances Farraher—Secretary.