Loretto Sisters (Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary)


As a community of women founded by Mary Ward four hundred years ago, we are called by God to:

  • Live a spirituality of finding God in everyday life and in service to others;
  • Respond to the most urgent needs of the time and culture in which we live;
  • Work for the liberation of all, particularly women and children;
  • Promote justice, peace and the integrity of creation.


Believing in God’s call to women to share their gifts and empower others to do the same through education or any other kind of ministry that is suitable for our time, we are engaged in the following ministries:

  • Advancing the welfare and liberation of women and children
  • Advocacy against poverty and discrimination
  • Chaplaincy
  • Counselling
  • Directing religious education programmes
  • Education on ecology and protection of the environment
  • Health care
  • Parish ministry
  • Prison ministry
  • Promotion of justice and right relations with all
  • Resettling refugees and immigrants
  • Retreat ministry and spiritual direction
  • Social work
  • Teaching
  • Working with the homeless

Where We Are

Grounded in our faith in the Risen Jesus, and energised by the friendship we share as Mary Ward’s companions, we use our gifts and resources to promote the Reign of God wherever we are, including:

  • Ontario and Saskatchewan
  • United Nations NGO office (involved in international peace and justice work)
  • Africa: Ghana, Kenya, Mauritius, Morocco, South Africa, Sudan, Tanzania, Zambia
  • Asia: India, Nepal, Bangladesh
  • Australia
  • Europe: Albania, England, Ireland, Italy, Spain
  • North America: Canada and the United States
  • South America: Ecuador, Peru.