The Catholic Archdicese of Birmingham Archives

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BRCFS - Birmingham Roman Catholic Friendly Society

Dates: 1795-1945

Number of records in this collection: 113


A collection of eleven bound volumes (BRCFS/1-11) and a file of papers (BRCFS/12-108) relating to the Birmingham Roman Catholic Friendly Society. Established as a 'Sick Club' on 25 May 1795, with 37 subscribers, the purpose of the Society was to provide financial help to members when they were ill and unable to work, to defray the funeral costs of members and their wives, and make some provision for widows and dependants. Its spiritual benefits were the offering of Masses for the living and deceased members. It was open to all Catholic men between the ages of eighteen and forty. At its peak, at the end of the nineteenth century, it had a membership of over two hundred. The Society was managed by a committee of nine (later increased to twelve), elected by the ordinary members, the officers being chosen by the committee. Its income was derived from the contributions of the members, a few donations and legacies, and from investment in stock and property. The Rules were amended periodically to reflect changing conditions and the demands of new legislation with regard to friendly societies. The Society was dissolved in 1948.

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