During the oppressive penal period of the late eighteenth century, Nano Nagle, foundress of the Presentation Sisters, began her work among the poor of her native Ireland.
Following in her footsteps, the Presentation Sisters today, work in Australia and many other parts of the world.
Addressing the pressing ever changing needs over the years, the Presentation Sisters have seen their work take on many different aspects of being there to support those in need. Their source of inspiration, the spirit of Nano Nagle continues to inspire and strengthen their resolve.
Before the sisters moved to this address, they taught at St Thomas’ Primary School, in 10 Reserve Street from 1908; travelling for thirty five years by horse and cart to and from Iona, our Mosman Park Convent.
That original school building still stands at number 10 today.
Alongside the traditional owners of this land, the Presentation Sisters, founded by Nano Nagle, have been custodians of this place since moving into their new convent, (originally called St. Joseph’s), here at 6 Reserve Street on 16 July 1943.
In 1989, the Convent became the Novitiate for the Presentation Sisters in Western Australia, with Sr Paula Quinn the first director of novices.
In 1990, the Prayer House was built within the grounds at 6 Reserve Street, as a residential retreat house and venue for workshops, lectures and days of prayer.
Sr Paula Quinn was the first to provide spiritual direction, retreats and days of reflection from this place.
Sr Kathleen Corby followed on, making the Prayer House available for hospitality and naming it ‘Ein Karem’.
For these women and the many other Presentation Sisters who have lived out Nano Nagle’s spirit in this place, we give thanks.
Today, the Nano Nagle Centre marks a fresh expression of Nano Nagle’s spirit as it seeks to respond to the pressing needs of the Church in the modern world; journeying with adults exploring their spiritual journey.
Sr Catherine Warner pbvm