ORIGIN AND CHARISM OF THE SISTERS OF ST. PAUL DE CHARTRES

The Sisters of St Paul de Chartres was born in a small village some 15 miles southeast of Chartres in France in 1696 by a young parish priest, Father Louis Chauvet.

Seeing the poverty and suffering of the people in his parish, Fr Chauvet immediately set out to relieve their plight. He realized that he could not do it alone. It did not take him long nor did he encounter difficulties in finding like-mined souls to start his mission. Two young girls and a lady, generous, courageous, selfless were only too happy and eager to give their life to God in the service of their neighbors, especially for the poor and the disadvantaged

Marie Anne de Tilly, the young lady from a noble family assisted Fr Chauvet by teaching the others to read and write, trained them to be future teachers. Fr Chauvet gave the girls their religious formation. The Sisters had only one rule to follow: The Charity of Christ. In 1708, Fr Chauvet entrusted the budding community to the care of the Bishop of Chartres, Bishop Paul Godet Des Marais, who became the ecclesiastical superior of the sisters and he gave them the name of St Paul, the Apostles. Hence, the Sisters are known as the “Sisters of St Paul de Chartres”

From the early dates the Congregation responded to the missionary call and the Sisters were challenged to their generosity, courage and missionary zeal. In 1727 four young Sisters set out to a 120 days journey to Cayenne, French Guiana, a colony in South America where prisoners and convicts were deported by the Government. A century later the second momentous missionary journey was launched in 1848 to China. It was from here that the Sisters spread to other countries in South East Asia. In early 20th century, the Sisters expanded their mission to Europe, North America, Africa and Russia. In 1984 the Sisters responded to the call to Australia. Today the Sisters have their missions in 34 countries over the 5 continents.

On 22 October, 1984 three Sisters from Hong Kong Province landed in Australia to start their first foundation in Australia. Aurora College (now known as St Paul’s International College) is a co-educational, multicultural boarding college for year 11 and 12 in Moss vale, NSW.
Click link: www.spic.nsw.edu.au

1989 the Sisters responded to the call to build an aged care home for the elderly in Brisbane, Queensland. Three Sisters arrived the same year and in 1992 a new aged care home was opened to serve the senior community. Today St Paul de Chartres Residential Aged Care is the Home for many of our senior residents.

True to the humble beginning of our origin, the Sisters try to live the simplicity of the gospel in poverty and charity. With tranquil daring and audacity, they make themselves ALL THINGS TO ALL PEOPLE by serving especially the needy and the most neglected wherever they are called.

The Sisters of St Paul de Chartres Australia
www.srspcaustralia.org.au