About Us

The Missionary Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate Conception are an international community, founded in 1873 by Elizabeth Hayes (Mother Mary Ignatius of Jesus). Born on the Island of Guernsey, Channel Islands, she was an Anglican convert to Catholicism. Elizabeth began our first mission in Belle Prairie, Minnesota, USA.

We are now involved in a variety of ministries around the world: in Australia, Bolivia, Canada, Egypt, England, Italy, Northern Ireland, Papua New Guinea, Peru, the Republic of Ireland, South Sudan and the United States of America.

In Coroico, Bolivia, Helena Harney has established a residence and a farm for students who otherwise could not enjoy the benefits of education because their homes are in the mountains, far from any school.

In Southern Sudan, a country torn apart for several years by civil war, Helen Neini, from Papua New Guinea, teaches children and supports and encourages the teachers who themselves have had little education for the duration of the war.

In Georgia, USA, Julie Franchi runs the Social Apostolate, compassionately providing meals, clothing and a helping hand towards employment and independence.

In Montreal, Canada, Sr. Lucienne Villeneuve assists in leading liturgical celebrations, often enhancing the liturgies with her inspiring sacred dances.

In the outback town of Cunnamulla, Queensland, Australia, Maureen Andrews, Parish Pastoral Leader, is baptizing a child in Thargomindah. Both these towns are rural, remote and sparsely populated. The priest visits once a month for Mass. Maureen has trained a number of women to conduct Eucharistic services and has empowered them to attend to other important parish duties.