Episcopal Church Women (ECW)

An organization of all the women within Holy Comforter who affect the church’s mission through a range of programs including prayer and outreach. The ECW at Holy Comforter has a long, strong tradition of offering spiritual, financial, and physical support for the parish and diocesan programs as well as funding to local and international charities. Our purpose is to unite the women of Holy Comforter in a program of worship, study, service, discussion, and fellowship.

All ECW programs and projects are open to all women of the parish. We are a lively and vibrant group of women of all ages, committed to making a difference in the world we live in.

A History of Women in the Church

In 1872, women of the church formed the Women’s Auxiliary as a way to take part in church life. The organization enabled the women to apply their energy and imagination to church life in a range of ways and brought our leadership skills into the church. In 1958 the Auxiliary was renamed the Episcopal Church Women (ECW) to recognize the fact that women are an integral part of the church’s life.

The History of the Holy Comforter ECW and Pennywise Thrift Shop

Tired of raising money through bake sales, Lillian Croy founded the Pennywise Thrift Shop which enabled the ECW to become a major financial contributor to the church. Pennywise provides 97 percent of the income of ECW.

The Funds

ECW Income is used to support the church budget and almost every ministry and department within Holy Comforter. Thirty percent of the funds raised by ECW go to outside ministries either through the Diocese or directly to local and international charities.

For more information, please contact [email protected]


Pennywise Thrift Shop: The women of Holy Comforter (the ECW), as well as men and teens, volunteer at the Pennywise Thrift Shop which generates almost all of the funds ECW distributes to the church, the Diocese, as well as local and international charities.

ECW Programs: Each year the ECW hosts programs for the women of the church. Usually held on Saturdays, our program days give our women a chance to socialize, get to know one another, and discuss topics of interest.

United Thank Offering (UTO): The vision of UTO is to significantly impact the lives of women and children because of Christ’s love. Our UTO efforts are run by the ECW and money is collected twice each year to contribute to very worthy causes in our Diocese.

Spring Tea: Every spring the ECW hosts a Spring Tea for parishioners and their guests—a glorious event that provides music, social time, a fashion show by Pennywise Thrift Shop, as well as delightful tea and elegant food.

Christmas Projects: Every Advent season the ECW sponsors several projects to collect gift cards and presents for the community in need. These very popular projects are a wonderful way the parish gives back to the local community during the season of Advent.

St. Catherine’s Receptions: St. Catherine’s Reception Guild is the branch of ECW that provides receptions for incoming and departing clergy as well as the annual reception for the Bishop when he/she visits the parish.

Pennywise Thrift Shop