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Los Angeles

The Los Angeles Province includes sisters, associates and ‘ohana all rooted in following the call of the Spirit and service of the dear neighbor.

In 1870, seven sisters from St. Louis left everything they knew and journeyed to Tucson to start a school at the request of the newly appointed bishop in Arizona. This arduous trip took 36 days. But even after this difficult journey, the sisters did not rest once they arrived. In their first 10 years, the sisters expanded what they named the Western Province to include two other cities in Arizona and three in California. In 1900, the provincial house designation was moved to Los Angeles, and the name of the province was changed to reflect the move.

An artist’s drawing of the first seven sisters arriving in Tucson in 1870.

Over the years, the Los Angeles Province has expanded to include sisters, associates and ‘ohana living and ministering in California, Idaho, Hawaii and Japan. Each new community brought new relationships and cultural understandings. 

As the number of sisters decreased in Hawaii and Japan in the 2010s, each vice province made the courageous decision to ask to merge with the Los Angeles Province. This merger would help the sisters in Japan and Hawaii concentrate on what they do best, ministering in their communities and focusing on how best to serve the dear neighbor.

Sisters and St. Joseph Workers protest human trafficking in Los Angeles

The ministries of our sisters are always rooted in offering a presence of unity and reconciliation to all those we meet. Our early sisters focused on healthcare and education. Today, we continue to serve in those and a much wider array of ministries, including social work, immigration, prison, food justice, housing, retreats and spiritual ministries.

Our sisters, associates and ‘ohana are dedicated to social justice, engaging in both internal and external work to address our complicity in oppressive structures. We do this individually and collectively in our province and ministries and by collaborating with other organizations and our partners in ministry.  Our main focus is on understanding and addressing systemic oppression within race, immigration and the environment.

The Oral History project of the Sisters of Saint Joseph of Carondelet is a research project of Mount Saint Mary’s University’s (MSMU) CSJ Institute and department of Film & Television Studies. These videos are used for students’ training, education and inspiration. MSMU was founded by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet.

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