Our Founding Mother

Rev. Mother Mary Veronica von Elmendorff

Seven centuries ago our founders, Saint Francis and Saint Clare responded to the Gospel summons to leave all things and follow Christ. The Gospel, ideal of poverty and humility which they lived, enriched the Church and became a guiding light for the men and women who joined them. In 1877, five Poor Clares from the exiled community of Düsseldorf, Germany, founded our community in Cleveland, Ohio, the first permanent community of Poor Clares in the United States. For them, as for us, the ideals of St. Francis and St. Clare were very real. They brought to our land the vision of Francis and Clare, whose very name means "light". This lovely light still shines, for in the heart of each young woman whom the Lord calls to our community, He kindles the light of Clare, just as He kindled it in the hearts of five valiant nuns over a century ago. Young and old, we cherish the memory of our founding Sisters.

  Like a glowing votive lamp, the Poor Clares gave brilliance to the Church of God. In the 15th century, however, the luster of the Franciscan light had been dimmed by historic trauma in Church and civic life. One of Clare's spiritual daughters, Saint Colette of Corbie, France, was called by God to fan the embers to a renewed blaze of warmth and light again. Poor Clares following the primitive observance restored by Saint Colette are often referred to as Poor Clare Colettines.

  Our monastery of the Blessed Sacrament was founded in 1877 from Düsseldorf, Germany. Our community presently numbers 24 sisters; 21 are cloistered nuns and 3 are extern sisters who care for the eternal service of the monastery.
Perry Street Convent

Permanent Home on Rocky River Drive - 1906