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About the Glenmary Sisters

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Canonical Name of order: Home Mission Sisters of America

Province or division: United States

Official abbreviation: GHMS

What is the story of your order’s founding?

The Glenmary Sisters were founded by Fr. William Howard Bishop in 1941. Their charism is to reach out and establish a Catholic presence in areas of the rural south and Appalachia where there is no gathered Catholic Church or where the congregation is very small – usually less than 2%. While it is their charism to bring a Catholic presence into these areas when they enter a new county, they consider all the people of that county, as people for whom they have been called to serve. They feel a responsibility to help people of all faiths in order to help them meet their spiritual needs, as well as their material needs such as food, clothing, and shelter. For those they meet in need of a church family, they invite them to come and be a part of their Catholic Church family.

What is your order’s primary ministry, or what ministries overall are you involved in?

Because the areas where they go have a high percentage of unemployment, the Glenmary Sisters have a strong commitment and responsibility to the poor and forgotten. The Sisters try to help these people meet their material needs as well as their spiritual ones. Many times, the Sisters start or work in outreach centers, provide care for the elderly, and work with, or begin, programs to help the people find their dignity as God’s children. This is their call as missioners – to reach out and walk with those in need.

Who is your order’s general minister or superior?

Sr Darlene Presley is our Mother Superior. She is originally from the Augusta, Georgia area. She made her Final Profession in 2008. Has served our missions in Smithland and Guthrie, Kentucky, and Pemiscot County, Missouri. She is a well-organized and gifted leader.

Where are the Sisters based?

The Glenmary Sisters are based in the Diocese of Owensboro, in Owensboro, Kentucky.

How can a young woman discerning learn more about whether God is calling them to pursue religious or ordained life in your order?

Contact the vocation office at 706-414-2982. We offer a Mission Immersion Experience in which women can come immerse themselves in a mission and walk side-by-side with a Sister to help in the mission work of the Sisters and to live the charism of Glenmary. A visit from a vocation prospect is always welcome.

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