On The Mountain Top
Sr. Maria Celeste Crostarosa received the Rules for a new Order on April 25, 1725. In Scala, Italy, a Neapolitan mountain town, the Heavenly Father opened his heart to her: “With desire have I desired to give my spirit to the world…to enclose all people in my bosom of charity. For this reason I gave to the world my Only-begotten Son…” She saw Jesus wearing the red tunic and blue mantle that the nuns would wear. The Father chose this institute “that it may be a living memory and figure of the works of salvation and love worked by my Only-begotten…” With the intervention and support of St. Alphonsus de Liguori, the first Redemptoristines made their profession on Pentecost, 1731. He was convinced of the validity of the revelation received by Sr. Maria Celeste. A year and a half later, Alphonsus would found the Redemptorists, largely due to a further revelation granted to Sr. Maria Celeste.
Across the Ocean
Dutch Sisters from Parti Wittem, Holland, were the first Redemptoristines to cross the ocean to make a foundation in French-speaking Ste. Anne de Beaupre, Quebec in 1905. The monastery in Chudleigh, England, made the first English-speaking foundation in North America. 4 Sisters flew to Toronto via New York in 1947. The young community grew fast and by 1957 they numbered 38. In the meantime, they had moved to a larger monastery at Barrie, Ontario. At the invitation of the Redemptorists of the Baltimore Province, six Sisters traveled to make a foundation in Esopus, New York, the site of the major seminary of the Redemptorists. Only two and a half years later, another group left Barrie and settled in Liguori, Mo., site of Liguori Publications.
Around the World
In the second half of the twentieth century, Redemptoristine monasteries began to pepper the globe—springing up in Japan, Australia, the Philippines, Burkina Fasso and South Africa. And, at the dawn of the 21st century, the Polish Sisters began sending out foundations: to Eastern Europe; first of all Kazakhstan, then in Slovakia where they established two monasteries—one of the Latin rite and the other of the Byzantine rite.