Christian Charity, Sisters of
CHRISTIAN CHARITY, SISTERS OF
Also known as the Daughters of the Blessed Virgin Mary of the Immaculate Conception (abbreviation: SCC, Official Catholic Directory #0660). Founded in Germany in 1849 by Pauline von Mallinckrodt, the daughter of a German nobleman, for the care of the blind and neglected children of Paderborn. Within 20 years the activity of the growing community had spread to include elementary and secondary education in 16 European institutions. When Bismarck's May Laws forced religious educators to close their schools in Germany, Mother Pauline was able to send her religious to North and South America, in response to requests for teaching sisters. On May 4, 1873, a group of eight arrived in the harbor of New Orleans, La. In the autumn of the following year, a group of 12 made their way across the Andes by mule into Chile in South America. Subsequently, the sisters established foundations in the U.S., South America and other parts of Europe.
The spirit of Christian charity provides the particular rule and spirit of the community, following the example of the foundress. Although founded originally for the care of needy children and orphans, the congregation has expanded its ministries to encompass all manner of apostolic work, with teaching, childcare, youth ministry, catechetics, hospital work and nursing as its chief activities. The generalate is in Rome. In the U.S., the congregation has two provinces—the Eastern Province (headquarters in Mendham, N.J.), and the Western Province (headquarters in Wilmette, Ill.).