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Foothills Columbiettes driving for more auxiliaries

GREENVILLE—The Prince of Peace Foothills Columbiettes Auxiliary 9184 is celebrating its 10th anniversary this month with a push to establish more auxiliaries in the Greenville Deanery.

The women’s organization will hold a “meet and greet” Sept. 12 at 7 p.m. in the Knights of Columbus Council hall at Prince of Peace Church in Taylors.

For years, the Columbiettes have been somewhat isolated, geographically, from other auxiliaries in the diocese. Currently, the closest one is located in St. John Neumann parish in Columbia.

The other seven auxiliaries are in Summerville, North Charleston, Beaufort, Myrtle Beach, North Myrtle Beach, Camden and Loris.  That list may grow in the next few months, with two possible auxiliaries in the Greenville Deanery.

Foothills Auxiliary President Michelle Zimmerman and Trudy Hock, former president and co-founder, were recently invited to an organizational meeting for a Columbiettes auxiliary located in St. Mary Magdalene parish in Simpsonville.

“The meeting went well,” Zimmerman said. “There were a lot of women there.”

Zimmerman said 26 women have signed up for the Simpsonville group, surpassing the 20-member minimum needed to receive a charter. It is tentatively scheduled to receive its charter on Oct. 14.

A few miles away in Spartanburg, 27 women have signed up for a proposed Columbiettes auxiliary membership in St. Paul the Apostle parish. Alice Convertino and Doris Vennergrund are leading that effort.

“We’re still in the formation stage,” Convertino said.

The next step is to invite a Columbiettes representative to speak to the group about the organization.

“Hopefully, shortly after that we will be able to get an installation of officers going,” Convertino said.

She said getting a charter as Columbiettes would assist the Knights and the broader community.

“A bunch of us ladies are always helping at the Knights events, and with our own organization and officers, we would be able to assist them in a more organized manner,” she said.

Some women Convertino has spoken with said they are also interested in assisting charities not currently under the Knight’s umbrella.

“I think we can do a lot of good,” Convertino said.

Installed in September 2007, Prince of Peace Foothills Columbiettes is the fourth oldest auxiliary in the state. In addition to assisting local charities, the group has established a scholarship fund to support parents of students attending Prince of Peace School.

“Since we started the fund, we’ve given away more than $11,000 in scholarship money,” Hock said, and over $12,000 to local charities.

John Olson, Grand Knight for Prince of Peace Foothills Council 9184, said the men welcome the Columbiettes.

“We look at them as sisters,” Olson said. “We’re there for them and they’re there for us.”

Miscellany/Terry Cregar: Michelle Zimmerman, left, and Trudy Hock are Columbiettes at Auxiliary Council 9184 in Taylors. The auxiliary is celebrating its 10th anniversary this month. The Columbiettes hope to charter two more groups in the Upstate.




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