Dear Friends of Notre Dame,
Earlier today, students, faculty, and staff gathered for the Foundation Day liturgy marking the 189th anniversary of the founding of Notre Dame Preparatory School’s sponsoring religious community, the School Sisters of Notre Dame (SSND). Joining us as special guests were sisters from the SSND community including Sister Charmaine Krohe, the provincial leader, and members of the Provincial Council. With the presence of these faithful women, the NDP community bore witness to both the community’s legacy of faith and their continued contributions to the education of our students and the broader community. Notre Dame Preparatory School is one of many SSND-sponsored institutions worldwide. From our campus on Hampton Lane to the Notre Dame Girls Secondary School in Nigeria, the impact of the School Sisters can be found on five continents in more than 30 countries. The Sisters’ defining charism of unity—bringing all God’s people together in love—fuels the mission of education, so that individuals are ready and able to transform the world for the common good of all.
Central to Foundation Day and the School Sisters of Notre Dame is the community’s foundress, Blessed Theresa of Jesus Gerhardinger. Beatified in 1985, Blessed Theresa, like our Patroness, the Blessed Mother, heeded God’s call to holiness when she was just a young girl, probably not much older than many of our students. She responded to that call through a vocation to teach, specifically young women, who were considered the stabilizing forces in their families. The community of women she established would follow her in this vocation and nearly two centuries later, their mission continues to thrive in schools like Notre Dame Prep. Their work has positively affected the lives of generations of girls and women, including those students who walk our halls today and the thousands of alumnae who continue to benefit from their NDP education.
In this school year, when the members of our community commit to “Growing in Grace,” we give thanks to the School Sisters of Notre Dame for their constant, grace-filled commitment to respond to the needs the world presents and for the gift of Notre Dame Preparatory School and the NDP community. On a personal note, as we celebrate this special day, I am humbled by the privilege to serve as a School Sister here at Notre Dame Preparatory School where the SSND mission is alive.
In Notre Dame,
Sister Patricia McCarron, SSND, Ph.D.Headmistress