Sisters of Mercy & Mercy Education
Catholic Mercy education has a long and rich history in Cincinnati and throughout the United States. This history is rooted in Ireland in the ministry of Catherine McAuley, the founder of the Sisters of Mercy, and her companions. Catherine recognized the many needs of people who were economically poor in early nineteenth century Ireland and determined that she and women like her could make a difference.
Spending her inheritance, Catherine opened the first House of Mercy on Lower Baggot Street in Dublin, Ireland, on September 24, 1827, as a place to shelter and educate women and girls. Catherine's original intention was to assemble a lay corps of Catholic social workers. Impressed by her good works and the importance of continuity in the ministry, the archbishop of Dublin advised her to establish a religious congregation. Three years later, on December 12, 1831, Catherine and two companions became the first Sisters of Mercy.
The Institute of the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas comprises nearly 3,000 sisters in the United States, Central America, South America, the Caribbean, the U.S. territory of Guam, the Philippines, and Jamaica. Through prayer and service, the sisters address five Critical Concerns: the causes and effects of violence, racism, degradation of Earth, and injustice to women and immigrants. They serve in more than 200 organizations, called “ministries,” that help thousands of people annually. These include healthcare systems and clinics; schools, colleges and universities; pastoral care such as retreat and spirituality centers and programs; and social service ministries that focus on a variety of needs such as housing, poverty and issues faced by immigrants and refugees.
A Mercy Education
Our Core Values are the hallmarks of a Mercy Education. These are the ideals we stand up for and strive to live up to. We hold ourselves to these standards as an institution, as a community and as individuals. Each value is interconnected and necessary as we take Mercy into the world.
Our Core Values:
Compelled By Mercy
Mercy students, in the spirit of our founder Catherine McAuley, are steadfastly determined to take Mercy into an interconnected world. Our shared sense of social consciousness is fortified by universal empathy and a conviction that all are worthy of God’s mercy. This deep awareness and compassion move us to take principled action and serve the needs of others.
Mercy students welcome the challenge of pursuing their full potential in a culture of excellence, critical thinking and curiosity. Their multifaceted journey builds character while it builds essential skills. Our holistic program expects engagement, a thirst for knowledge and personal responsibility, while preparing students to thrive for a lifetime.
Inspired By Faith
Mercy students become living models of faith and forceful advocates for Gospel values. Grounded in our Catholic identity in the Mercy tradition, we welcome all faiths and are strengthened and shaped by these relationships. As we pursue a personal relationship with God, we strenuously follow Jesus Christ’s example of social justice, love and service.
Mercy students are poised to lead with their unique gifts. Prepared with an ethical and moral compass, we put Mercy values into action and work assertively for what is right. We’re equipped to make difficult choices, learn from our mistakes and develop high emotional intelligence. As an international community, we’re confident in our ability to make a positive difference and push for systemic change.
A Voice For Dignity and Respect
Mercy students honor the intrinsic value of the individual and recognize God’s presence in each person. We embrace a global vision and value differences of opinion, and are unafraid to confront hostile or hurtful attitudes. By standing up for those who can’t, we go beyond acceptance to help make sure everyone feels recognized and heard.
Profile of a Graduate
Our Profile of the Graduate is how students come to manifest and embody our Core Values. It’s the culmination of everything a Mercy Education hopes to achieve. Throughout the student’s journey, this blueprint defines the attributes they’re expected to acquire and the steps they’ll take to gain them. With the Profile of the Graduate, every experience and academic opportunity is linked to and aligned with our Core Values.
Mercy Education Member Schools
Mercy Education unites and serves 55 schools in six countries and one territory.