England / Ireland

Important dates in the History of the Region:




Rice Hill


Collège St Patrick


Virginia Maternity


Virginia Retirement Center for the aged


Grove Park Seminary


Parish Pastoral work at Aberdovey


Parish work at Wolverhampton

In 1996

The Sisters of St. Joseph of the Anglo-Irish Region and those of Bordeaux joined forces with the Sisters of St. Joseph of Lyon.

As Sisters of St. Joseph we are committed to our apostolates and responsible for the mission entrusted to us. Wherever we are, we show our love for all, through our interest, dedication and participation.

We are especially committed to pastoral work and hospitality is a strong point in our lives and in our communities. We organize personal or group retreats and prepare the young and not so young to receive the sacraments. We form church wherever people can gather, sit and taste the Lord’s presence in an unusual setting. We visit the elderly and the homebound in their homes; we also go to retirement homes; everywhere, we bring comfort, joy, and an attentive ear and Holy Communion to those who desire it.

Catholic chaplaincy, at the university and in the army, is also an important part of our mission, as is the apostolate with those who renounce prostitution or drugs. The homeless are not forgotten, especially when they need to be listened to or supported.

Another important ministry involves visiting and communicating with our elderly and sick Sisters in retirement homes.

Ecumenism is an important part of our apostolate as well as helping various charitable organizations, especially in fundraising.

Our Associates live our charism in their daily lives and meet to pray and share on a regular basis.

All these forms of apostolates allow us to make acts of inclusive love among ourselves, with others and with God.

Our History:

At the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century, anti-clerical laws in France were aimed at the separation of the Church and State.  Consequently our sisters there were barred from teaching in the primary schools and in one night more than 50 small schools were taken over by the state and the sisters were secularised.

In England at that time Father John O’Toole was looking for religious sisters to help with the evangelisation of the people of his newly created parish of Haunton, a small village in Staffordshire.
At the suggestion of Archbishop Illsley, the then Archbishop of Birmingham, Fr John wrote to the Superior General of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Bordeaux – Mother St. Paul – requesting sisters to fulfil this Mission.

The Sisters of St. Joseph accepted the invitation and on the 3rd May 1905 three French sisters arrived in Haunton where there mission began by teaching in the small village school.   Later on a property in the village was bought where children from age 4 to 18 were educated.

From Haunton, sisters opened other missions in Hilton Hall, Wolverhampton and in Ireland, in Virginia, Co. Cavan as nurses and teachers.

The General Chapter of 1970 granted permission for the English and Irish sisters to form a Region.  On the 4th August 1970 this Region was formed while remaining wholly connected to the larger body of the Congregation.

In 1996, the Sisters of St. Joseph of Bordeaux along with the sisters of St. Joseph of Burgh amalgamated with the Sisters of St. Joseph of Lyon forming one congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Lyon.

The sisters have now moved away from teaching and nursing to more pastoral ministries which are diocesan and national.