Wherever we are, we try to be present with people in the daily reality of life, making a difference in many small ways to people’s lives especially the poor and marginalised by our presence with and through our various ministries.
To learn more about our key Ministry areas, click on the following categories:
Nano Nagle recognised education and lifelong learning as a cornerstone of enabling transformation of all, especially those on the margins of society. Almost 250 years since she began her pioneering work in her schools, education and learning projects are still an intrinsic focus of Presentation Sisters’ ministry across the globe. Presentation Schools, learning centres and programmes of education inspired by Nano Nagle strive to promote holistic faith-based education and recognise that the educational journey is different for each person embarking upon it. Our learning communities strive to ensure that the dignity of persons is respected in a happy safe environment where they can learn and grow.
Nano’s faith and commitment to God nourished and sustained her during the best of times and, more especially, during the worst of times. For her, “The Almighty [God] is all sufficient”.
Though much of Nano’s time was devoted to teaching and ministering to those in need she spent several hours in prayer and contemplation each day. Indeed, her pattern of spirituality was to remember in prayer what and whom she encountered when she went out and about each day, and, in turn, to bring a prayerful contemplative and compassionate stance to all she was and did when she went out again.
For so many who follow in her footsteps communication with God in Christ is integral to their lives. Trusting the promptings of the Spirit is their hallmark. This spiritual way is deepened by contemplating Jesus, the Living Word, in scripture and sacrament, through practices such as ‘Be Still’ times (15 minutes of silent prayer), faith-sharing with others, and through contact with the natural words: “For those who have come to know God the whole world is a prayer mat.” (Bawa Muhaiyaddeen)
Nano Nagle recognised that in ministering to people it was often necessary to make provision for care of the body as well as the mind and spirit/soul. She understood the connection between all aspects of the human person.
When she decided to found her own religious Congregation that became known as the Presentation Sisters, and to live the Consecrated Life, she chose St Mary John of God as her religious name. Her choice of name gives us a clue to her integral vision for all. While education nurtures and fashions the mind, attention must also be given to the health of body and soul of the poor and those in need by those who follow in her footsteps, as it was by her and her companions in mission in her day.
In recognising unmet needs across the world, followers of Nano today find themselves in ministries which are related to Healthcare and Healing. These ministried take many different forms, from taking care of the elderly, helping tribal women with childbirth, administering care to AIDS victims, healing touch and more.
Healthcare and Healing are important ways which express the charism of Nano Nagle, as it was for her patron, John of God.
In Nano Nagle’s childhood years she was fashioned and formed in a secure loving Christian family home amidst the beauty of the landscape of Ballygriffin, Co Cork. In this en vironment, Nano’s respect for the dignity of persons and human rights was rooted, and her appreciation of the beauty and wonder of creation nurtured daily. In one of her letters she writes: “If I could be of any service in saving souls in any part of the g lobe, I would willingly do all in my power.” As an adult, the city of Cork of her day where she ministered was marked with violence and bloodshed – often caused by the ignorance of the many and the oppression of those in power. Her vision was of empowering the disenfranchised through education which in turn would lead to a more just and peaceful society where all could flourish and fulfil their potential. Today, those who walk in the footsteps of Nano are at the frontline of human rights activity, tackling inequality, creating awareness and taking action to influence global policy. Promoting peace prevents the damage wreaked on people and the planet by conflict and war. Protecting the planet and promoting sustainability is a core part of ensuring that the dignity of those living on earth can be maintained. It is also a way of demonstrating respect to the earth and cosmos that God was created for the human race. The Congregational Coordinating Team for Justice supports and strengthens the justice networks within and between units/mission areas of the Presentation Sisters Union with the hope of ensuring more effective engagement in IPA process. Lisa can you then have a link from here to the justice tab under ‘What Guides Us’.
exclusion and pastoral care needs are as prevalent in the 21 st Century world as they were when Nano Nagle was ministering to the poor and needy of Cork, Ireland in the 1700s. Nano worked to improve conditions for those she encountered who required care – whatever the person’s social standing or circumstances. She visited prisoners and their families, took care of prostit utes, cared for those who were wretched ill, often due to hunger and poor sanitation and the reality that the poor have to endure. Echoin g down through the ages many of the issues that existed in Nano’s time still exist now and those who follow in the footsteps of Nano across the globe endeavour to fill the needs that they encounter to promote social inclusion both through working with indi viduals and through influencing policy by engaging with social policy makers.