Wagga Wagga

The Presentation Sisters of Wagga Wagga have a rich history, dating back to their arrival in 1874. The founding Sisters, Mother John Byrne, Sr Evangelist Kelly, Sr Paul Fay, Sr Xavier Byrne, and Sr Stanislaus Dunne, sailed from Kildare and Mountmellick convents in Ireland. On 29 May, they were escorted into town by a large number of residents of the district.

For their first two years in Wagga Wagga, the Sisters lived in the presbytery and taught in the presbytery’s stables until Mount Erin Convent was built and opened in 1876. During this time, the Sisters were actively involved with the people living around them, including the poor and immigrants. They not only taught in their school, but also offered support and opportunities for learning and gathering to the entire community. However, with the move to Mount Erin, Bishop Lanigan imposed enclosure within the grounds of the convent, limiting their direct involvement with the broader community.

Despite this, the Sisters continued to extend their mission to other parts of New South Wales, Victoria, Western Australia, Queensland, the Australian Capital Territory and even Papua New Guinea. Responding to invitations from parish priests and bishops to open or take over schools, and as a result of changes to mission focus and the ministries of individual Sisters, the Sisters expanded their work to address the needs of the communities they served.

In the years following Vatican II, the Sisters began to explore Nano’s story, leading to the expansion of ministries to other works that Nano had been engaged in with her service to the poor, such as working with those in prisons, hospitals, and the homeless. Advocacy for structural change also became a focus of mission.

Today, the Sisters continue to engage in a variety of ministries, including adult education and spirituality, supervision, counselling, facilitation of groups, pastoral work, support of asylum seekers and refugees, historical research and writing, presence with those who are homeless, disadvantaged and aging, and prison ministry.

Their commitment to addressing the needs of our planet, alongside social justice and advocacy for those on the margins continues.

Contact Information

Congregation Leader: Margaret Barclay pbvm
Email: admin@preswagga.org.au
Phone: +61 2 9643 7999
Office: “Kildare” 86 Cambridge St Berala
Postal Address: PO Box 83 Berala NSW 2141