Sisters of Divine Providence of Kentucky
SISTERS OF DIVINE PROVIDENCE OF KENTUCKY
(CDP, Official Catholic Directory #1000); established in 1889 at Newport, KY, by members of the Congregation of the Sisters of Divine Providence, founded in Lorraine, France, in 1762, by John Martin moyË, parish priest of the Diocese of Metz. Moyë desired "to form Sisters who would go alone into the hamlets and isolated country places, there to teach school and catechism to neglected children." His plan became effective Jan. 14, 1762, when Marguerite Lecomte opened the first school in Vigy, near Metz. When the French Revolution disrupted the schools, Moyë and a group of about 30 sisters under Sister Rose Methains, Superior General of the congregation, became exiles in Trier, Germany. After the Revolution the sisters returned to France and opened a novitiate in Insming (1803), Hommarting (1812), and St. Jean de Bassel (1827), the present motherhouse general of the Sisters of Divine Providence of Metz. Despite disturbed political conditions, the congregation grew steadily and in 1888, Rev. Mother Anna Houlne, Superior General (1885–1903), became interested in extending the congregation's work to the U.S. With the approval of Bp. Camillus Paul Maes of Covington, KY, the first house of the congregation in the new world was established at Mt. St. Martin Convent, Newport, KY. Subsequently, an academy and a novitiate were opened there. Under the constitutions, definitively approved by the Holy See in 1943, teaching and nursing are the principal works of the congregation.
Since 1919, St. Anne Convent, Melbourne, KY, has served as provincial house and novitiate. In the U.S., the sisters are engaged in the fields of academic education, catechetics, homes for working women, retreat centers, parish ministry, pastoral ministry, healthcare and social services.
Bibliography: Archives, Sisters of Divine Providence of Kentucky, St. Anne Convent, Melbourne, Kentucky. r. plus, Shepherd of Untended Sheep, tr. j. aloysius and m. generosa (Westminster, MD 1950).
[m. s. brauch/eds.]