Separation from Ireland

Loretto Abbey at 101 Mason Blvd, Toronto, was the motherhouse of the North American Generalate until re-union with the Irish Branch in 2003.Loretto Abbey at 101 Mason Blvd, Toronto, was the motherhouse of the North American Generalate until re-union with the Irish Branch in 2003.At about the same time, serious consideration was given to establishing the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary in North America as a branch independent of Ireland, and, for reasons that are not totally clear, this was accomplished. Certainly communication with Ireland was difficult and took time; as well, pioneer conditions and a difference in culture in the 19th and early 20th centuries demanded adaptation from the way the sisters lived in Ireland: in the new towns where they ministered, sisters were required to teach boys, to travel alone and to adapt to very different circumstances than they had experienced in the days since the community was founded in Dublin. Whatever the reasons, the Loretto Sisters in North America were granted independent status in 1881, with the motherhouse at Loretto Abbey in Toronto.