Women’s Institute is home to some of my best friends, from all over the world. And I bet as WI ladies you too could count many friends made through home and country over the years. I hesitate to list them off, because I would surely miss so many, but what fond memories they bring. Facebook alone has been a great way to meet fellow WIs and friends, especially from the British Isles.
Did you know that Friendship Day started in the 1930s by the Hallmark Company, but it really never took off because it was seen as a commercialized day?
However, in 1958 it was instituted again by the World Friendship Crusade. Then in 2011 the United Nations named July 30th the day when people all over the world are encouraged to support peace through friendship, regardless of backgrounds.
Two lines from Mary Stewart Collect are especially poignant on World Friendship Day:
“May we put away all pretense and meet each other face to face, without self-pity and without prejudice”, and
“Grant that we may realize that it is the little things that create differences; that in the big things of life we are one”.
This year, with COVID-19, we are sorely missing our WI friends due to so many cancellations. But as the day comes near, I hope we might each take a few moments to call or text a WI friend to say hi. If the ladies during the wars could manage to keep their groups and friendships going, I am sure we can too. In fact, a note in the old-fashioned mail might be just the pick me up a friend could need.
Happy Friendship Day everyone & stay safe.
Submitted by Angela Scott, New Brunswick Women's Institute