International Congregation

Bringing fresh water to Vietnam school Singapore team bringing fresh water to school in Vietnam

Charism of Merciful Love

The Congregation of Our Lady of Charity of the Good Shepherd is an international, apostolic religious institute of pontifical right.  As women religious, called to a mission of reconciliation, Sisters of the Good Shepherd express the charism of merciful love.

'Our relationship with those we meet should be for them a means of encounter with Jesus the Good Shepherd.  We seek to approach them as he does.  Each person is present to him in human uniqueness, and he calls each one friend.  Our love should awaken in them a sense of their worth and dignity as children of God.  At the same time, we are aware that we receive mercy from them and that we cannot separate our salvation from theirs.'  Constitution of the Sisters of the Good Shepherd, No.5

From the beginning, foundress Saint Mary Euphrasia established a Contemplative branch of the Sisters.  The Contemplative Sisters contribute to the transformation of the world through prayer, silence, solitude, sisterly love and zeal. 

Sisters of the Good Shepherd consecrate themselves to God through living the Vows of Chastity, Poverty, Obedience and Zeal.



We envision a new way of living that celebrates the connectedness of all God’s creation, an inclusive world where the dignity and diversity of all life is honoured and protected.



Energized by our evolving understanding of God’s love, we build partnerships that promote the dignity and human rights of all, especially women and children.  In solidarity, we work for the transformation of unjust systems, the flourishing of humanity and integrity of all creation.


Congregational website

Sisters of Our Lady of Charity of the Good Shepherd -




Congregational Leadership Team 2015-2021 Congregational Leadership Team 2015-2021

Congregational Chapter

The Congregational Chapter is a collegial assembly and the highest authority within the congregation.  Representatives from all Provinces gather every six years for this Chapter.  It is a spiritual event, a time of corporate reflection and conversion.

The Congregational Chapter:

  • Elects the Congregational Leader and members of Congregational Councils.

  • Examines reports on the affairs of the Congregation, and directions submitted by province chapters, assemblies and individual sisters.

  • Addresses issues of general concern and decides directions for the entire Congregation.

Congregational Leadership Team

The Congregational Leader has personal authority over the entire Congregation.  She governs in a spirit of service and love.  She represents the international character of the Congregation and encourages co-operation among the Provinces.  The Congregational Leader is elected for a term of six years, and she may be re-elected for a second term.

The Congregational Leadership Team is composed of the Congregational Leader, an apostolic council and a contemplative council.  There are at least three members of each council.  The congregational leadership team represents various cultures and reflects an international perspective.  The members assist the congregational leader in animating and governing the congregation.

The Congregational Leader and the members of the apostolic council usually reside in the Generalate in Rome.  The members of the contemplative council usually reside in their home provinces.

Congregational Leadership Team 2015-2021

Congregational Leader – Ellen Kelly - USA
Apostolic Councillors – Josita Corera - Sri Lanka, Zelna Oosthuizen - South Africa, Susana Franco - Paraguay, Frances Robinson - Ireland, Hanan Youssef - Lebanon, Bridget Paily - India 
Contemplative Councillors – Jude Ellen Golumbieski - USA, Mirian Colala - Ecuador, Lily Devasia Kunnanattu - India


To facilitate government and ministry, the congregation is divided into Provinces.  Each province comprises a number of houses which for geographic, cultural and other reasons are united into an administrative Unit under a Province Leader.

The Province Chapter is an important gathering in the life of a Province.  In a spirit of prayer and dialogue, participants assess the life of the province, renew fidelity to the core mission and spirit of Good Shepherd and plan for the future.  The Chapter is held at least every six years to prepare for the Congregational Chapter and for elections.The Province Chapter may elect the province leader and members of the province leadership team.

The Province Leader has ordinary authority over the province and is its official representative under the congregational leader.  Her role is one of spiritual and apostolic leadership, service and love.  The province leader's term of office is six years.

The Province Leadership Team is composed of the province leader and council/s (apostolic/contemplative).  Councillors share with the province leader the responsibility for the development of the province, in all its aspects, in order to ensure its vitality. 


The Congregation is divided into five regions, to enable broader consultation and sharing, and to facilitate communication between provinces:

  • Asia Paciic

  • Europe

  • CPNA (North America & Canada).

  • REAL (Central & South America).

  • RIMOA (Middle East, Africa, the Isles).

Regional Gatherings

Regional Gatherings are held for particular purposes, as needed.

In preparation for the Congregational Chapter, every six years three Intercontinental Assemblies are held, according to the regions, and an Assembly of the Contemplative Sisters from across the Congregation.