About Bon Secours Volunteer Ministry
Bon Secours Volunteer Ministry, sponsored by the Sisters of Bon Secours, provides the opportunity for women and men to participate in the Sisters’ commitment to justice in radical solidarity with the poor, the suffering, and those most in need. By sharing the Bon Secours charism of compassion, healing, and liberation, the ministry nurtures and sustains individuals in their personal and communal journeys towards transformation through service with others.
Who are the Sisters of Bon Secours?
Twelve young women gathered together in Paris in 1822 with a desire to nurse the sick in their homes. This small group had a vision – they desired to take the care of the sick and dying out of the hands of mercenaries and place it in the hands of those who care about each person for God’s sake. Josephine Potel was chosen by the group as their leader. On January 24, 1824, these 12 women made their vows and received the name Sisters of Bon Secours, meaning “good help.”
The next years found Bon Secours expanding to Ireland, Great Britain and the USA. In May, 1881 three Sisters arrived in Baltimore and immediately began nursing the sick in their homes.
Early in the 20th century, the Sisters were called to take responsibility for hospitals and nursing homes. Today, the Bon Secours health care ministry extends to Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Florida, South Carolina, New York, and Kentucky.
The innovative spirit of the 12 foundresses and the ever present desire to reach out to address unmet needs continues. Sisters are involved in ministries that reach beyond the traditional walls of health care. Today, Sisters serve as community organizers, parish nurses, advocates for the poor, and in hospice services.
In the 21st century, the Sisters of Bon Secours continue to be united throughout the world with a renewed common vision which states: