I find it fascinating to look in the National Archive files of Australian Church Women (ACW) and see how our organisation developed over the years. Today, I am posting excerpts from a past national conference report on the Fellowship of the Least Coin (FLC) prayer movement. This report was submitted for inclusion in the working papers prior to the 1991 conference taking place in Sydney. The report gives us a glimpse of how the FLC was operating in Australia during the early 1990s, almost 28 years after Australia first began to promote the Fellowship of the Least Coin in 1964.
Here are the main points presented by Glad West, of New South Wales, the 1990-91 National FLC Convener:
‘The years 1990 and 1991 have been blessed years for Fellowship of the Least Coin in Australia. It is always rewarding to see FLC increasing throughout all States, especially as this means more prayer and compassionate help for many distressed peoples, quite unable to help themselves.
‘My thanks to all State Conveners who have the task of organising in their States, and with whom I have had wonderful co-operation, fellowship and care …
‘It has been good to receive reports on the outcome of past Grants from FLC funds, and to know the money has meant much to the recipients of the Grants. These were forwarded to Shirin Samuel. No Grant Applications were sent in 1990, but in 1991 Applications have been forwarded for two Projects within Australia and two Projects to be effective overseas. It will be 1992 before we know whether these may be accepted.
‘All States continue to use VOL XI of Circle of Prayer [the FLC devotional booklet], plus Prayer Cards and Brochures for Promotion … some Badges were available where requested.
‘Travel within the States is not easy due to the vastness of Australia and different States handle the work in unique ways. Tasmania have found it helpful to have Conveners in different areas, while Queensland with the most widely dispersed groups has been served by a Convener who will go anywhere by whatever means available, and has been blessed for her efforts. ACT, our smallest [area] had 40 contributing groups. Space prevents my going on, but well done everyone.
‘Shirin Samuel, FLC International Executive Secretary, now living in Hong Kong, paid a flying visit to Australia to attend the World Council of Churches Assembly in Canberra during February 1991. Following these meetings she flew to Tasmania where a fruitful visit was made with ACW there. Unfortunately I was unable to meet with Shirin during her one hour stopover at Mascot, and missed out on fellowship which I would have loved. At Shirin's request, the National Committee allowed a box of promotional literature for Fellowship of the Least Coin to be placed at the Canberra Meetings, where folk were invited to take them free, which they most certainly did.
‘Owing to the difficulty of getting materials from overseas and the time lag, the National Committee have decided to print Brochures and Leaflets this year for distribution at the Conference in September. We look forward to the Conference, and meeting with Delegates from all States, especially from Tasmania who will accept the National Committee for the coming two years. I pray the Lord will really bless the FLC Representative as she takes up the task which I'm sure she will enjoy and find very rewarding.’
National Convener FLC
Australia first began to promote the Fellowship of the Least Coin in 1964