The Sisters of Notre Dame in India belong to a larger international religious organization, the Congregation of the Sisters of Notre Dame which was founded in Coesfeld, Germany in 1850. Since then, the Congregation has spread over five continents into eighteen countries. We owe a special debt of gratitude and love to our Sisters of Christ the King Province, Chardon, Ohio (then in Cleveland, Ohio) who generously sent six American Sisters to India in September, 1949, on their long voyage by ship, first to England and then to Mumbai, India.. They finally arrived at their destination, Jamalpur in the state of Bihar, on October 31, 1949.
Their struggles, challenges, adventures, and sufferings – due to inclement weather and an alien multi-cultural Asian setting – read like the exploits of a historical saga. Nothing deterred the Sisters nor the ones who followed them from the U.S.A. Very soon they planted the seeds for an excellent educational system prevailing throughout our schools in India and a health care system that even till today caters to the needs of many poor, suffering, and distressed. Added to this is our active participation in a strong social action programme that works especially for the empowerment and uplift of women and girls.
While spreading our work throughout Bihar, W. Bengal, Delhi, Karnataka, Tamilnadu, Kerala, Chhatisgrah, Jharkhand, Jammu-Kashmir, Maharashtra, and Assam, we were encouraged to expand our mission to Tanzania-Kenya, Africa, in 1992. Today there are a number of Indian Sisters working there helping to build up the native population in education, health, and social reforms. They, along with the African Sisters who have joined us, form the Delegation of the Holy Spirit, Arusha, Tanzania.
Due to our Sisters being spread over a vast area embracing the northernmost parts of the Himalayas to the southern tip of the Indian peninsula, we found it necessary to form two Provinces on December 18, 2004. The northern unit continued to be called Our Lady of the Assumption Province, and the southern one was henceforth to be known as Our Lady of the Visitation Province, with Bangalore as its administrative centre. These Sisters inherited already formed houses, schools, and institutions. They soon opened schools and institutions of their own and are working hand in hand with their Sisters in the northern province to make the good God’s name known to one and all.
WE ARE ONE NOTRE DAME FAMILY.