The Good Shepherd Sisters of Quebec
The apostolic ministry of the Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, also known as Good Shepherd Sisters of Quebec, has always been the care of women and children in distress, and other people left aside by society. Throughout the years, morals have changed, mental outlooks have shifted, and their work has adapted, but the Sisters have never strayed from the message of love and goodness of their Foundress, Marie Fitzbach.
In their activities, they have stayed on course despite adversity of all types. For over a hundred and fifty years, they have been protecting women in distress and those with legal difficulties, as well as unwed mothers and their children, regardless of the social scorn experienced from time to time. Their limited resources never prevented them from organizing ongoing services or providing urgent assistance when need be.
For the Sisters, transmitting intellectual and spiritual knowledge has likewise been regarded as an investment in the future. Education, especially for the poor, is an integral part of their mission. Here and elsewhere, in times of peace or crisis, they have offered programs to lay people who wish to share a faith experience by assisting persons in need.
The first sisters of the Good Shepherd of Quebec, 1856
The Congregation today
The Good Shepherd Sisters have always been guided by their desire to give professional service in social work and teaching in the countries where they are serving. Even now, they count themselves among those who are searching for solutions to current social problems, either directly or through members of the Good Shepherd Lay Affiliation. Their ministry is essentially a spontaneous response to needs. Humbly, they hope to continue to influence social practices related to caring for the marginalized, a work so important to them.
The Good Shepherd Sisters of Quebec are currently serving in Quebec, the United States of America, Lesotho, the Republic of South Africa, Haiti, Brazil, and Rwanda.
Since the founding of the Religious Congregation in 1856, some 2,500 women, inspired by faith and the desire to serve, have professed vows within the Good Shepherd Congregation. Today there are approximately 600 members in the various countries where they have been called to serve.