At the heart of the world


It was on the Croix Rousse hill that Sister St Jean Fontbonne arrived on July 13th 1816 to open a novitiate in a part of the Chartreuse Convent, rue Pierre Dupont.

And it is from there that the Congregation of St Joseph of Lyon has spread.

Today this foundation place is the bearer of the rich history of our Congregation which has seen the Saint Joseph branches break off and become independent Congregations.

A section called “Heritage Centre” has been inaugurated, visited by countless Sisters of St Joseph and countless laity from all over the world.  The Province of Europe includes in her mission promotion of these visits which help to make known the history of the Sisters of St Joseph.

The Province Europe includes Sisters in France, Belgium and Switzerland.

A Council composed of a Provincial and four Assistants favors the life of the Sisters in the communities at the service of unity and the mission.

The Sisters are assembled in apostolic communities according to their age and possibilities:

Small communities of 3 to 5 Sisters;

Large communities of 8 to 15 Sisters;

In Retirement Care Homes where they share the life of the lay residents.


The Sisters are engaged in society and in the Church in different ways:

Through Associations, helping people in need, migrants.

Presence with the youth: extra help with school work, helping foreign students.

Pastoral activity through catechetics, Biblical formation, Catholic Action, spiritual accompaniment, counselling in bereavement.


For a certain number of years the Province has chosen to entrust responsibilities to the laity in our Schools as well as in our Retirement Care Homes.

The animation of such establishments is according to the “Saint Joseph Spirit” – Religious and laity working together as partners striving after” the double union of people together and with God.”

As for Education, the Sisters are actively engaged in the schools or in the Conseil de Tutelle.

La Tutelle Scolaire in the Province.

The Tutelle is a guarantee of the evangelical authenticity of the educational project and of its implementation in the schools under its pastoral responsibility.

The “Conseil de Tutelle” organises the follow up of the schools so as to promote their dynamism according to the spirituality of St Joseph.


As for the Retirement Care Homes some Sisters are active members of the executive council; our elderly Sisters who are Residents “lead their religious life right to the end.”

Retirement Care Homes of the Province.

The Retirement Care Homes is a place where each one contributes to the community project according to her possibilities.

Through Associations which manage these Retirement Care Homes the Sisters and the Laity help to transmit the “Saint Joseph culture”.

The Associates.

In the Province there are a few persons who are committed Associates.

The group of Associates is open to all individuals who are seeking a spirituality to help in the deepening of their faith, in their relationship with God and with others.