Our History

Ursulines come to New Orleans

Taking root in Brescia, Italy in 1535,
the Ursulines grew and extended their presence to France, Germany and other parts of Europe. They established a strong identity as educators and founded communities and schools for the education of girls wherever they went. Pioneer educators in North America, they arrived in Quebec in 1639 and New Orleans in 1727.

During the 19th century, more Ursulines arriving from Europe and Canada settled in Missouri, New York, Maine and California, bringing the tradition begun by Angela to new educational endeavors. These new communities of Ursulines grew and spread across the country.
The Ursuline Sisters of the Central Province have ministries in Missouri, Illinois, Louisiana, Texas, Massachusetts and Maine but also serve in many other places. As the needs of the times change, Ursulines continually broaden their ministries to meet society’s needs, reaching beyond geographical boundaries to serve around the world.