The Society of Sisters for the Church was founded in Paterson, New Jersey by Sister Eileen Kelly, PVBM who at that time was Vicar for Religious in the Diocese. This new community began with the blessing of Bishop Frank J. Rodimer, the Bishop of Paterson at that time.
The community was a response to the interest of a number of religious women who were leaving traditional communities, but wanted to continue to live a vowed life fashioned on the example of the women of the early Church. Given the birth of the Church was Pentecost, it was decided that it would be the appropriate feast for this community.
The members of the Society of Sisters for the Church are celibate women who live prayerfully and simply and have dedicated themselves for life, through vows of celibacy, obedience and poverty to serve the apostolic needs of the Church. They live in a simple manner, but do not live a common life. They are supported in their dedication by one another and by the people whom they serve.
Currently, the Sisters minister in 16 dioceses in the United States and Australia. In response to the Gospel works of mercy the Sisters serve in diverse ministries such as: advocacy and referral for the underprivileged, consultation to religious communities, diocesan services, education, health services, Hispanic outreach, parish ministries, religious formation and as retreat and spiritual directors. A few retired members continue their ministry through bible study and prayer groups, Communion visits to the homebound, bereavement ministry and other services in their local parishes.
The Society of Sisters for the Church is an emerging ecclesial community founded according to:
The Inspiration of the Gospel and the women of the early church. In the early christian community, women such as Dorcas, Priscilla, and the Daughters of Philip the deacon, played a vital role in the service and development of the Church.
The teaching of the Church through the decrees of Vatican II. Vatican II has called religious to renew their spirit and adapt their vision and way of life to the needs of the times.
The call of the Spirit in the signs of the times. Persistent challenges of the church and of the world call for the initiative of new means of witnessing to the presence of Christ, and of bringing the Good News of the Gospel to all people.