Reunion: 2003

Mary Wright IBM, General Leader of the Irish Branch and Maria Bierer, General Leader of the North American Branch, sign the Agreement of Re-union in September, 2003, formally uniting the Irish and North American Branches into one new Loreto BranchMary Wright IBM, General Leader of the Irish Branch and Maria Bierer, General Leader of the North American Branch, sign the Agreement of Re-union in September, 2003, formally uniting the Irish and North American Branches into one new Loreto BranchSince becoming a separate Generalate in 1881, connections between North America and the founding community (often called the “Irish Branch”) in Dublin had remained close, with correspondence and visits well-documented in the archives of both groups.

Conversation about “union” took place in various forms, both formal and informal and eventually, in September 2003, in a three-day celebration, Loret(t)o sisters from around the world gathered in Toronto to celebrate and ritualize the Reunion of the two branches, Irish and North American into one Loreto Branch. Canada and the United States became two provinces of the larger branch, which now includes the provinces of Australia, Canada, Eastern Africa, England, India, Ireland, South Africa, Spain, the United States, and the Region of Peru. The Generalate of this Branch of Mary Ward’s Institute is in Rome.