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“A flower is small, like the small isolated groups we minister. So small a flower is easily overlooked... But pick it up, examine it; it becomes a thing of beauty.”
Father William Howard Bishop

The Glenmary Sisters

Father BishopThe Glenmary Sisters are a small community of Catholic Sisters who live and minister in the midst of those we serve.

Founded in 1941 by Father William Howard Bishop, a simple parish priest who served in rural Maryland for over 20 years. Over the years he saw thousands of forgotten people, the poor and neglected inhabiting the most rural areas of the United States. An overlooked population who were starving, not just in body, but for the ‘Bread of Life.’

Father Bishop had a vision.

He set out to care for, minister and educate those most in need and in that process founded The Glenmary Sisters.

Since 1941, the Glenmary Sisters have established missions primarily in impoverished and rural areas of Appalachia and southern regions of the United States of America where the Catholic population is often less than two-percent. The Sisters presence and ministry is important in that we may be the first Catholics these people have come in contact with. Through this compassionate outreach, we endeavor to realize God’s loving presence in their lives.

The Sisters' ministry has helped people become self-supportive, break the reins of poverty and lead successful, Christian lives. We seek out solutions to problems in our missions and over the past 70 years have helped create many successful programs to assist these rural communities.

The Glenmary Sisters are missioned in western Kentucky, eastern Kentucky, and the Missouri Bootheel. We are supported by our central office in Owensboro, Kentucky by a small dedicated staff, part-time consultants and a volunteer advisory board. All of us work together to, feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, clothe the naked, shelter the homeless, visit the sick, and those in prison, and bury the dead. Through these Corporal Works of Mercy the Glenmary Sisters seek to live out Father Bishop's vision.



Sisters past Sisters Sisters