WHEN Monica Hills joined the Mothers' Union in 1957, little did she realise that one day her photo would be sent to Queen Elizabeth II.

Mothers' Union, a missionary organisation within the Anglican Church, has enjoyed royal patronage for more than 100 years. Queen Elizabeth has been its patron for 60-plus years.

On the occasion of the Queen's official birthday in the United Kingdom on June 11, Mothers' Union Australia is sending greetings along with photos of Mothers' Union members who turn 90 in 2016.

Two other Bundaberg members to turn 90 this year are Val Simpson, who has been a member since 1978, and Ron Simpson with 14 years' membership.

Mothers' Union was founded in 1878 by Mary Sumner, a clergyman's wife in the village of Old Alresford in the south of England.

She became concerned about the responsibility mothers had in bringing up their children.

Her vision was of a union of mothers coming together regularly for encouragement, support, education and prayer for themselves and for one another.

Her vision soon spread throughout Britain and then across the Commonwealth - reaching Australia in 1892.

Today Mothers' Union is a worldwide organisation of 4.1 million members from 81 countries.

The biggest membership is in the developing countries where a diverse range of programs with training of its indigenous workers meet the needs of individuals and families.

Mothers' Union is passionate about caring for families around the world, and upholding them in prayers and giving financial support when needed.

The Mothers' Union mission statement is: "Sharing Christ's love by encouraging, strengthening and supporting marriage and family life."

The Bundaberg branch has been faithfully ministering in this community for 77 years.

Monica, Val and Ron feel very privileged to be celebrating their 90th birthday in the same year as their queen and having their photos forwarded to Her Majesty.


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