Calling all Midwives!Friday 08 June 2018
On Friday June 8 at 5.30 pm, Belfast Cathedral welcomes midwives past and present, and anyone whose life has ever been touched by a midwife, to a special service of Choral Evensong celebrating 100 years of the Midwives Act 1918 in Ireland.
The service, organised by the Royal College of Midwives, is one of a number of events celebrating this milestone in the history of midwifery and giving thanks for midwives everywhere.
The Evensong in Belfast Cathedral is one of two ecumenical services being held to mark the Midwives 100 year – St Eugene’s, L/Derry, will hold a service on June 21.
As well as midwives past and present, an invitation is extended anyone who has used the service. The address will be given by the Dean of Belfast, the Very Rev Stephen Forde, and Gill Walton, Chief Executive of the Royal College of Midwives, will read a Lesson.
There will be music from the Choir of Belfast Cathedral. During the service a candle will be lit in memory of all Irish midwives who have died. Intercessions will be led by serving and former midwives, with the first prayers said by a gentleman in his 70s whose late mother was a midwife.
Belfast Cathedral parishioner Hazel McCalister is on the organising committee of Midwives 100. A midwife of 40 years, Hazel remembers her first delivery very well. “It was April 1976. Afterwards I received a letter from the new mum, and in it she said I had been very confident,” Hazel laughed. “There is such a joy in being a midwife, it is so amazing. I still feel that after all these years, waiting for that first little cry.”
Those attending the service will be able to view an exhibition of memorabilia for midwifery in Ireland over the years. Hospital trained midwives are encouraged to wear their badges.
Hazel added that midwife means ‘with women.’ “I love being present for new life. It is such a privileged job,” she said.
The service is on Friday June 8 at 5.30 pm.