The Chester Catenian Circle has always been primarily a Catholic social organisation, through which deep and lasting friendships have been formed. We are an international association of Catholics who meet socially every month. We welcome people from all parts of our world regardless of income. We are not a secret organisation ( on your second visit if you are thinking of joining you can sit in on a meeting). We do fund raise and have membership fees but these are very modest and are not a significant requirement on members and should never be a restriction to joining.
On Clergy night we entertain our clergy to dinner to thank them for all they do for us. Our wives (and where appropriate children) and widows are involved in most of our social events. Our meetings are usually monthly at Vicars Cross Golf Club.
Other Circles can be found in UK, Austraila, Ireland, Hong Kong, Malta, India and many parts of Africa.. etc and are arranged in Provinces with a Grand Council in the UK.
Brief History of the Catenians
The Catenian Association was founded in 1908 at the suggestion of Bishop Louis Casartelli, then Bishop of Salford. The Association began life in Manchester with the rather old fashioned title of “The Chums”.
In those early days of Catholic emancipation, young Catholic laymen needed support in their faith in the day to day life they lived.
The social environment in England for Catholics was still rather hostile at that time. Young Catholic laymen needed support in their faith in the day to day life they lived. The law preventing Catholics from practising their Catholic beliefs had only been abolished some 60 years before, so attitudes were slow to change against the Catholics. In the English middle classes, deep paranoia over the role of the Catholic Church, especially in education remained.
Catholic laymen also experienced difficulties and discrimination in relation to employment and this in turn affected their family life and the lives of their children. The Association was made up of branches called “circles”, each forming a link in a chain of Catholic brotherhood and provided mutual support for each other and our values and although the challenges have changed significantlythis support today is as important as it was in 1908.
In 1915, the Association changed its name to the Catenian Association, derived from the Latin word “catena” meaning chain. The Association was made up of branches called “circles”, each forming a link in a chain of Catholic brotherhood.
This chain has now grown and spread worldwide under the auspices of the Holy Spirit from Manchester, where it was first forged, all the way to Australia.
Catenian values can be summarised in the words, faith, family and friendship:
- The Catholic faith is central to the Catenian Association and all brothers are required to be practising Catholics.
- Family plays a huge role both individually and also in the wider Catenian family. Wives and other members of the family are regularly involved in social activities.
- Friendship and brotherhood is the cement upon which the whole Catenian Association is based