The MSC Congregation was born in Issoudun, a small town some 250 Km south of Paris in France, a little over 150 years ago, on the 8th December 1854. The vision of its founder, a 30 year old priest named Jules Chevalier, was to establish a missionary society that would have as its purpose to bring an experience of the compassionate and merciful love of God to all people as the one remedy for the evils that afflicted society.
This was the vision that had captivated him since his seminary days, a dream he would quicky share with a small band of other young, enthusiastic men. The beginnings were humble indeed, but perseverance and complete trust that their project was indeed the will of God, led to a flurry of vocations and early missionary expansion.
Rapid early growth and a first foothold in England and Ireland
The growth of the Congregation was rapid and by the spring of 1876, just twenty one years after its foundation, one of Fr. Chevalier’s original companions visited England to explore the possibility of acquiring a house and establishing a community there.
In August of the same year Fr John Neenan, a young Irish priest from the Diocese of Cloyne in Ireland, travelled to France to enter the MSC novitiate. So began the inseparable link between the MSCs in the little town of Issoudun and the countries of Ireland and England. The first house in these islands was opened in Madely in Shropshire, England in 1882 and by 1909 the first foundation in Ireland had been established on the Western Road in Cork.
The mission continues... Our Founder