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The community of the Schoenstatt Sisters of Mary was founded on 1st October 1926 in Schoenstatt, Germany by Father Joseph Kentenich. We were founded initially to serve the growing Schoenstatt Movement. Our first Mother House was directly opposite the Original Shrine – today known as the Old House. As our community grew so did our tasks and our Sisters took up various positions throughout Germany. At the beginning of the first world war and the great danger of National Socialism our founder searched for a way to secure the future of Schoenstatt outside Germany. A daring decision was made to send young and inexperienced Sisters to a foreign country. The first Sisters arrived by boat in South Africa in January 1934. Since then we have spread to all continents in 29 countries with vocations from 35 nations. As an Institute of consecrated life, we strive to live the evangelical counsels without taking vows.
We wish to be a community of lay leaders formed by Schoenstatt’s spirituality and, as a member of the Schoenstatt Family, contribute to the Marian formation of the world in Christ to the glory of the Father. As a community of educators and education, our aim is the Marian formation of girls, women and families. Therefore we work within the Schoenstatt Movement, some on a full-time basis. We also work in any occupation open to women in the Church and world. We serve the Church through the formation of lay leaders who are involved in different ministries. Our Sisters also work in parishes and various organisations. To support the apostolic activity of our Institute, we have a community of Schoenstatt Sisters who foster adoration of our Eucharistic Lord and contemplative life. Like Mary they want to be the heart of the Church who, together with Our Lady, help to renew the world through prayer, sacrifice and atonement.