First Community in United States (1956)
The first foundation of the Marist Sisters was on September 19, 1956 in Dearborn, a suburb of Detroit, Michigan.
In the 1950’s Detroit was booming with business and industry. The development of the auto industry and the economic prosperity attracted hundreds of thousands, such as European immigrants, and both black and white people from the South. All were seeking better jobs and the opportunity to live the American Dream. Detroit’s population hit 1.85 million, making it America’s fourth-largest city, with 296,000 manufacturing jobs.
This phenomenon had its impact on the Church in Detroit. Many people moved to the suburbs and many of them were religious people seeking a catholic education for their children. To meet this religious need, new parishes were sprouting up throughout the diocese and most of them wanted a catholic school. However, Cardinal Mooney in Detroit stipulated that no permission would be given for a school unless the parish had a firm commitment from a congregation of sisters to staff the school.
At that time, Ireland had many vocations and so the first sisters came from there. It was on September 19, 1956, that Mother Ephrem, Sisters Ildefonse, Justina, (MaryRose Keegan),
Constance and Monessa stepped off a BOAC plane at Willow Run airport in Detroit.
From the very beginning, all five sisters were involved in the religious education program for children who attended public schools…
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Our Current Ministries
- Minstry to Unit and local communities
- Hospital Chaplaincy
- Retreat House Director
- Spiritual Direction
- Home Visits to Sick and Shut-ins