Our Heritage

Leaving a mark on the world

“United and content with little, we go out into the whole world, into the tiniest villages, into the poorest dwellings, wherever the Lord calls us, to bring poor children the good news of God’s reign.” Blessed Theresa wrote these prophetic words in 1839 when the congregation counted 14 professed sisters and nine novices.

During the next 60 years, hundreds of School Sisters of Notre Dame were sent to missions in several Central European countries as well as in England, the United States, and Canada. Despite opposition and wars in Europe and America, despite expulsion and exile from Prussia and Baden, the sisters were faithful to Blessed Theresa’s words: “We must always be one in Jesus.”

Despite the unspeakable horror of the 20th Century world wars which shattered nations and incited further conflict, division, and oppression, School Sisters of Notre Dame remained “united and content with little” as they followed God’s call “into the tiniest villages, into the poorest dwellings, in order to bring poor children the good news of God’s reign” both at home and abroad.

Although fewer in number today, School Sisters of Notre Dame respond to God’s call in the 21st Century, which is marked by tumultuous change. In the spirit of Blessed Theresa and Mother Caroline, we continue to educate in schools and in other areas where there is urgent need, to care for children and people who are in need because of poverty, to support and encourage women, and to work for justice and peace.

For detailed information about our heritage, please visit our international website and/or SturdyRoots.org.

Visit our Heritage Rooms.


  • Germany (1833)
    United States (1847)
    Poland (1851)
    Austria (1853)
    Italy (1857)
    Romania (1858)
    Czech Republic (1859)
    England (1864)
    Serbia (1864)
    Canada (1871)
    Hungary (1873)
    Slovenia (1886)
    Puerto Rico (1915)
    Sweden (1931-2023)
    Switzerland (1931-2014)
    Brazil (1935)
    Argentina (1938)
    Netherlands (1938-1946)
    Japan (1948)
    Guam (1949)
    Honduras (1956)
    Bolivia (1961-2007)
    Guatemala (1962-2022)
    Columbia (1963-1984)
    Chile (1964-2015)
    Peru (1965)
    Paraguay (1966)
    Marianas Islands (1969-1985)

  • Liberia (1970-1990)
    Jamaica (1970-1975)
    Algeria (1972-1974)
    Sierra Leone (1973)
    Yemen (1973-1981)
    Caroline Islands (1973-2008)
    Ghana (1974)
    Kenya (1974)
    Nigeria (1974)
    Mexico (1979-1996)
    Nepal (1983-2022)
    Dominican Republic (1984-1993)
    El Salvador (1987-1999)
    Marshall Islands (1987-2001)
    Haiti (1989-1992)
    Belarus (1990)
    Gambia (1990)
    Chuuk (1995-1999)
    Korea (1996-2006)
    Tanzania (1998-2000)
    Pakistan (2000-2001)
    Albania (2002-2015)
    East Timor (2004-2008)
    Israel (2004-2015)
    South Sudan (2008)