Ursuline Sisters of Louisville  
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Quick Facts
Who are we?
Teaching Christian living is the corporate ministry of the Ursuline Sisters. This ministry, cutting across socio-economic, racial and national boundaries, assists women, men and children to live more fully and to develop a personal relationship with God.

Who was Angela Merici?
Angela Merici was born into a farming family in Desenzano, Italy, around 1470. She was called “La Santa” as she lived in Brescia in Northern Italy and became known as a peacemaker and a prayerful, wise woman. Click here to learn more about St. Angela Merici.

How did the Ursulines evolve?
The company of St. Ursula eventually evolved into several different groups or branches. While some continued to live as the Company, one branch accepted the structure of monasticism (a life of solitude, contemplation and prayer in a community setting) and became the Order of St. Ursula. Its members were called Ursulines. Rather rapidly, new convents of Ursulines were founded throughout Italy, then in France and later still in Germany. The first Ursulines reached the North American continent in 1639 at Quebec, and in 1727 they arrived in what is now New Orleans.

How did the Ursulines come to Kentucky?
In 1858, Bishop Martin John Spalding of Louisville sent the pastor of St. Martin Church to Germany to find Sisters to teach the German children in St. Martin’s parish and other German parishes in the area. Three Ursuline Sisters arrived in Louisville that same year and immediately established a school and convent.

What do the Ursuline Sisters do?
The Ursuline Sisters participate in the teaching mission of the Roman Catholic Church. They work in schools, hospitals, community centers and parishes. Others minister to those with disabilities, to immigrants, and in spiritual direction, retreat ministry and in the deaf community. Still others work with the poor in rural areas in the United States and Peru, South America. In Louisville, the Ursuline Sisters sponsor the Angela Merici Center for Spirituality and Sacred Heart Schools, which offer educational experiences from pre-school through secondary school. They are also co-sponsors of Nativity Academy.

Where are the Ursuline Sisters located now?
The Ursuline Sisters of Louisville serve in Kentucky, Iowa and Nebraska. They also support two missions in Peru, South America.