Holy Cross, Sisters of Mercy of the

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(SCSC, Official Catholic Directory #2630); Theodosius florentini, OFM Cap., founded a congregation in Switzerland in 1844 to give to the poor, the neglected, and the delinquent care and guidance based on Christian principles. The first three sisters undertook the teaching apostolate, and from this group there developed the Teaching Sisters of the Holy Cross of Menzingen, Switzerland. Another congregation developed under the direction of Sister Maria Theresia Scherer who went to Chur, Switzerland, in 1852 to direct a hospital and to open a novitiate. When Florentini established the generalate at Ingenbohl in 1856, Scherer became the first superior general of the Sisters of Mercy of the Holy Cross.

The congregation's first foreign mission, established in Bihar, India, in 1894, has extended its activities to Bengal and Madhya Pradesh. The sisters have assisted in founding two diocesan congregations and have also opened their own novitiate in India. The second mission field, Manchuria, had to be abandoned in 1950, but the missionaries returned to the Orient four years later to work in Taiwan. The community came to the United States in 1912 at the invitation of Bp. Vincent Wehrle of North Dakota, where the sisters opened a hospital in Dickinson. In 1923 Mother Aniceta Regli chose Merrill, Wisconsin, as the U.S. provincialate. In the United States, the sisters are engaged in academic education, hospitals, nursing, pastoral ministries, social outreach, parish ministries, retirement homes, campus ministry, and adult education.

[c. schnitzer]

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