Schoenstatt On The Lake

Religious Vocations


The community of the Schoenstatt Sisters of Mary is the first of the six secular institutes founded by Father Joseph Kentenich. Our community was founded on October l, 1926. As an institute of consecrated life we exercise the evangelical counsels without taking vows. Our aim is to be a community of lay leaders formed by Schoenstatt's spirituality, and as a member of the Schoenstatt Family, contribute to the Marian formation of the world in Christ so that a Marian Father Kingdom is built up on the shores of a new era. As an explicit community of educators and education the special aim of the Institute is the Marian formation of girls, women, and families. Therefore we work within the Schoenstatt Movement, some of us on a full-time basis at the service of the movement for women and the family branch. This is our main apostolate. We also work in every occupation open to women in the Church and secular fields. We have an adoration branch which fosters the contemplative life. They are the power of love which supports the apostolic activity of our institute, Schoenstatt as a whole, and the Church by their prayer, sacrifice, and atonement. We are here to serve the Church through the formation of lay leaders who in turn are to be active in various ministries within the Church, particularly in parishes. Our sisters also work within the Church in parishes and in various organizations. As an international community we number 2,500. We have two provinces in the USA. The Wisconsin province has 135 sisters with outreach in Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. The Texas province has 37 sisters with development in Mexico.


Our community was founded in 1965 as the sixth and last secular institute of the Schoenstatt Movement. Members of the community of the Pallottine Fathers, to which Father Kentenich belonged, fulfilled the role of the pars motrix et centralis, the inspiring and moving part of the movement, during the years before our founding. As priests we are ordained for and incardinated into the international community of the Schoenstatt Fathers, headquartered in Schoenstatt, Germany, with about 260 members worldwide. Here in the States we are presently seven priests.

We call ourselves Schoenstatt Fathers in order to distinguish ourselves from the community of the Schoenstatt Diocesan Priests who remain in their respective diocese. In Milwaukee, like in various other places here in the States, there are several priests who made the Covenant of Love with our Mother Thrice Admirable and consequently belong to the Diocesan Priests League. Our task, in cooperation with the Schoenstatt Sisters of Mary, is to offer inspiration and guidance primarily to the members of the Schoenstatt Family worldwide through retreats, workshops, counseling, etc. We do this here in the States nationwide as well as at our four national centers (Wisconsin, Minnesota, New York, and Texas) and in Puerto Rico.