A special Liturgy will be celebrated on Saturday, July 1 to mark a significant moment in the lives of two of Australia’s religious congregations. The Liturgy marks the day that Our Lady’s Nurses of the Poor, founded in 1913 by Eileen O’Connor and Fr Edward McGrath msc, come under the aegis of the Congregational Leader and Council of the Religious Sisters of Charity of Australia for governance, administration, and pastoral care.
“For more than 100 years, Our Lady’s Nurses of the Poor – known as the Brown Nurses – have lived the charism – ‘For the poor’ – and performed a unique ministry of healthcare, advocacy, and friendship for the poor and disadvantaged,” said Our Lady’s Nurses of the Poor Congregational Leader, Sr Margaret Mary Birgan. “At one stage, our community boasted almost 40 religious sisters and novices, all trained or training as registered nurses. But now there are just 11 of us, and we have asked the Congregational Leader and Council of the Sisters of Charity to provide our governance, administration, and pastoral care.”
Sr Clare Nolan, the Congregational Leader of the Sisters of Charity, the first women religious to arrive in Australia in 1838, said: “The Sisters of Charity of Australia are privileged to be able to support Our Lady’s Nurses of the Poor, and we look forward to working closely with them to ensure the charism of Eileen O’Connor, and the legacy of the Brown Nurses, is carried into the future.”