The Glenmary Sisters were founded in 1941 by Father William Howard Bishop. He was a simple parish priest who served in rural Maryland for over twenty years. During that time, 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 to, and educate those most in need and in that process founded The Glenmary Sisters.

Since 1941, the Glenmary Sisters have established missions in the 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 are important because through our compassionate outreach we help people to realize God’s loving presence in their lives. For some, we are the first Catholics they have encountered. Our ministry has helped people overcome poverty to become self-sufficient and lead successful Christian lives.

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 and part-time consultants.