The Society of the Sacred Heart (Society of the Sacred Heart of Jesus) is an international Roman Catholic religious congregation for women established in France by St. Madeleine Sophie Barat in 1800.
The society of the Sacred Heart has approximately1964 members in Provinces/Districts in 40 countries around the world. In Ireland/Scotland our members are in a wide variety of ministries.
We participate in the mission of the Church through the service of education which is our way of continuing the work of Christ.” (Const. 7)
For Religious of the Sacred Heart, spirituality and mission – fleshed out in the service of education – are intimately linked. They seek to discover and reveal the love of Christ’s Heart to those to whom that service is addressed. Each page of the Constitution gives proof of this unity. It is because they are captivated by the love within Christ’s Heart that they want people to grow in dignity, as human beings and as children of God.
From it’s beginning : Education
From its beginnings and during the first century and a half of its existence the Society exercised its apostolate chiefly through the education of youth in schools and colleges. However, the widespread changes resulting from the Second World War challenged the Religious of the Sacred Heart to question their way of embodying their mission of education. Madeleine Sophie’s own concept of education helped them in their search; for her the aim of education was to teach girls how to become active women in the world. She saw education, therefore, as the means of transforming society, of improving it, of renewing the social fabric. That is why today the Religious of the Sacred Heart fulfill their service of education in three arenas:
Formal teaching and training
Human development and the promotion of justice
Pastoral work and guidance in the faith.
Following on from the Second Vatican Council the Religious of the Sacred Heart were no longer an enclosed order. This resulted in an outreach to people on the margins in health care, legal affairs and spiritual and pastoral dimensions of our lives.
This in time led to greater involvement in matters related to Justice & Peace and in our own time to the care of our common home.
To be One Body which loves, practices and gives witness to justice, peace and integrity of creation at all levels of our life and mission. (General Chapter 2016)
This call to examine our choices in our daily lives is a challenge. We hope that we really reflect and discern our choices in relation to the care for our common home.