Welcome to the website of the English Province of the Congregation of Jesus, an international congregation founded by Mary Ward in 1609.
"I hope in God it will be seen that women in time to come will do much"
Mary Ward 1617
400 years ago Mary Ward and her companions fought the prejudices of their time to follow the call of Christ according to the model of the Society of Jesus. She was:
A woman of vision - who saw, centuries before her time, the potential of women, the need for their education, and the possibility that women could live for God outside the cloister and serve God in the world.
A woman of courage – who braved the misunderstanding and rejection of family and society, who walked to Rome through plague and war to present her pioneering plans to the Pope, who endured shame and imprisonment rather than compromise her vision.
A woman of prayer – whose deepest longings found fulfilment in God.
400 years on and all over the world we who follow her seek
- To be 'wholly God's', finding God present in all things
- To be 'lovers of truth and workers of justice', in the light of the Gospel
- To live as companions of Jesus, sharing in his mission to our sisters and brothers
Mary Ward's institute has two branches, known today as the Congregation of Jesus and the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary.