Mother Agnes Mary, SV, was among the first women to respond to John Cardinal O’Connor’s inspiration to found the Sisters of Life, a religious community dedicated to the protection and enhancement of the sacredness of human life.
The Sisters of Life were founded in 1991 as a contemplative/apostolic community with the primary work of prayer on behalf of vulnerable human life. The apostolic works of the Sisters include a “Holy Respite,” where pregnant guests are welcomed to live in the spiritual environment of a religious house, and a “Visitation Mission,” offering hope and providing practical resources to women for whom pregnancy creates a crisis. The Sisters of Life host a variety of retreats to uphold the culture of life, and to invite those who have suffered from abortion back to the Lord’s merciful love. An apostolate in the Archdiocese of Denver, Colorado, is one of evangelization specifically tailored to students attending area universities and colleges. The Sisters staff the Office of Respect Life for the Archdiocese of New York. The Sisters serve in New York, Philadelphia, DC, Denver, Toronto, and Stamford, Connecticut.
Mother Agnes has served as Superior General of the community since 1993. She was richly prepared by God for her consecrated mission with a PhD in Psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1985, and as a faculty member and professor of psychology at Columbia University in New York City and The College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia. In her professional career as an academic and clinical psychologist, she focused on family intervention, mother/child relationships, and children with special needs.
Responsible for anchoring the religious community of the Sisters of Life in its charism, and for guiding the Sisters to holiness, Mother Agnes is often called to share the gift and patrimony of the Institute — reverence for human life — across the United States and the world. She currently serves as a member of the Pontifical Academy for Life, as a consultant for the USCCB Committee on Pro-Life Activities; and in other ways, as all Sisters of Life do, to embody the affirmation of the Catholic Church of the “feminine genius” and the culture of life.