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Celebrating Two Centuries of the Irish Branch

In August of 1821, M.M. Frances Teresa Ball returned to Ireland to found the Irish Branch of the Institute. M.M. Teresa Ball, having spent 5 years in training at the York Convent, was now prepared to make her return and serve the Irish community in providing education for girls following in Mary Ward's footsteps.

200 hundred years later, Our Sisters and community give thanks for Mother Teresa Ball’s fortitude and determination in living Mary Ward’s God-given inspiration. It is this continuation of inspiration and guidance that spurred Teresa Ball to say “yes” to founding branches of the Institute in Ireland and world-wide. Within her living years as Foundress of the IBVM Loretto Sisters she had 13 foundations in Ireland, and 37 Loreto Houses worldwide as distant as India (1841), Mauritius (1845), Gibraltar (1845), Canada (1847), England (1851), and Spain (1851).

Portrait of Teresa Ball

M.M. Teresa Ball

Subsequently each foundation, including our own in Canada, continued to grow leading to foundations Canada-wide and into the United States. Each sister who joined the various missions dedicated their lives to serving God through the ministries of the Institute. Each of the thousands of children who attended Loretto schools were witnesses to the spirituality of the Institute and benefactors of Mary Ward’s continued inspiration through Teresa Ball’s Irish Foundation and our own Canadian Superior, Teresa Dease. This legacy continues at our Loretto Schools; Loretto Abbey, Loretto College, Loretto Niagara Elementary and Mary Ward Secondary School.

We invite you to explore this compilation of web-resources and discover the life and legacy of M.M. Teresa Ball, and snippets of archival documents related to the founding of our own province.  

Archives Open Day

From Kathleen Fitzgerald, IBVM, Institute Archivist and Áine Mc Hugh, Project Archivist (Ireland)


​"The first Open Day of the Loreto Central and Irish Province Archives was held on Saturday 28th April 2012, in the school assembly hall, Loreto College, 53 St Stephen’s Green.

​The theme of the day was ‘The Life of M. Teresa Ball’, and its aim to highlight the life and achievements of M. Teresa Ball, and an unearthing of some of the treasures held in the Archives.

We hope these talks and Brigid’s song highlighting the struggles, resolutions and achievements of M. Teresa Ball and those who worked alongside her, will serve to inspire all who heard or read them.

Happy reading!"

Teresa Ball Signature
Teresa Ball looking upward

Francis and the Curious Voice by M. McManus

200 years of Teresa Ball Anniversary Logo
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