Sisters of the Company of Mary Our Lady
Saint Jeanne de Lestonnac School is quite unique in that many of the Sisters of the Company of Mary Our Lady who own and operate the school are a visible presence in administration, supervision on the playground, and in the classroom alongside their lay collaborators. The Sisters are also active in the kitchen, the extra-curricular activities of the school, and the daycare program. Who actually was this special saint? The Sisters’ order, founded by Jeanne de Lestonnac is over 400 years old and was established at a time when girls did not have the opportunity to have a formal education in a school environment. Jeanne was born in Bordeaux, France, in 1556. She was the niece of the famed humanist French philosopher, Michel de Montaigne. For 24 years she faithfully lived the vocation of loving wife and mother to five children. After the death of her husband, she felt God’s call again to the religious life. Jeanne de Lestonnac founded an order of nuns approved by the Pope Pius V in 1607 to provide formal education for girls. Today the Sisters of the Company of Mary’s mission as educators is expressed in a variety of ministries in 26 countries. The Company of Mary schools serve over 60,000 students worldwide from preschool through university.