As the Father has loved me,
so I have loved you.
Remain in my love.
If you keep my commandments
you will remain in my love,
just as I have kept my Father's commandments
and remain in his love.
I have told you this
so that my own joy may be in you
and your joy be complete.
This is my commandment:
love one another,
as I have loved you.
A man can have no greater love
than to lay down his life for his friends.
You are my friends,
if you do what I command you.
I shall not call you servants any more,
because a servant does not know
his master's business;
I call you friends,
because I have made known to you
everything I have learnt from my Father.
You did not choose me,
no, I chose you,
and I commissioned you
to go out and to bear fruit,
fruit that will last;
and then the Father will give you
anything you ask in my name.
What I command you
is to love one another.
Foundress of the "Company of Saint Ursula" and its various branches, including
THE URSULINES OF THE ROMAN UNION
Angela Merici was born in the year 1474 to a middle class farming family living in Desenzano, Italy, on the shores of Lake
Garda. From an early age she was nourished by her father's reading of the lives of the Saints and so, from childhood, she
was drawn to things spiritual.
Her life's work was influenced by a supernatural event, which took place with the purpose of revealing the mission to
which God was calling her. One afternoon, praying alone in a wooded spot, she saw a procession of angels and saints
among them her sister, who told her that she would gather around her other young women who would give their lives to
God. She took the habit of the third Order of St Francis so that it would be easier to go to Mass, Confession and
Communion without becoming the talk of the district, as in those days lay persons were not allowed to receive frequent
communion as was the case later.
From accounts of those who knew Angela well we learn that her way of living was an example to all. People were
captivated by her kindness and by her wisdom. She was singled out as the person to whom one could turn in the time of
need. They came to her to seek advice about changing their way of life, or how to support trials, to draw up a will, to get
married or to marry off their sons and daughters. In addition, no opportunity was ever lost of making peace between
husband and wife, father and son, brother and brother. She gave advice and consolation to each one to the best of her
ability. They all experienced a spontaneous and serene availability to which they could have recourse in time of need.
Visitors came from all social backgrounds - Angela knowing full well that rich clothes could be hiding interior poverty.
When she was in her early forties, Angela moved to Brescia where she remained until her death. Attracted to Angela as
she radiated a quiet joy, many young women were won over and applied to join her. After being prepared by meetings
and spiritual formation for a few years, the little group, twenty-eight in number, met on 25 November 1535,
(the Feast of St Catharine of Alexandria), in a small oratory in Brescia where they pledged their lives to God. Angela gave
the name "Company of St Ursula" to her followers. Probably Angela was struck by the audacity of this early Christian
martyr and of her being entrusted with a mission from on high - a spiritual encounter similar to what she herself had
It was the aim of the company to live an active life, but with the mind always raised heavenwards, so as to permeate
urban society through their widespread function of witness and of service. The first Sisters of the Company continued to
live with their families, carrying out their normal occupations, but living their consecration on the lines bequeathed to
them by Angela. In 1540, when Angela died, her followers numbered one hundred and fifty.
A SHORT HISTORY
EARLY DAYS OF THE COMPANY
Brescia became one of the foremost among the cities influenced by the Protestant Reformation and the new religion. Th
Bishops set up Schools of Christian Doctrine and enlisted the members of the Company of St Ursula as teachers. Thus
began a long tradition of education, which was to be a characteristic of the Company to this day. The principles of St
Angela's mode of government, as given by Angela to the first Superiors, became transferred to the educational activity of
From Italy the company first spread to France. Later, other European countries, whether through natural expansion or
because of persecution, which forced the Sisters to seek refuge abroad, were dotted with Ursuline convents, each
autonomous but all looking to St Angela as their Mother and Foundress. New foundations were always made in view of a
work of education to be accomplished.
At the end of the l9th century, Pope Leo XIII suggested to the Ursulines that they should form a Union. In 1900 this
became a reality when autonomous Ursuline Convents throughout the world joined the Roman Union of the Order of
St Ursula. Houses that were geographically close were formed into Provinces and a Generalate was built in Rome as a
residence to the Mother General and as an administrative centre.
Dear, ST ANGELA,
You were granted the gift of reconciling enemies and
showed great understanding of and insight into human
Obtain from God for us, in our families and in all our
relationships, the gift of understanding, reconciliation,
forgiveness and true love of each other.
Help us to think the best of each other always. Show us
the joy of true self-forgetfulness, that we may go out of
ourselves, reach out to others and show concern for them,
especially those for whom we have no natural liking, or
from whom we are estranged.
May we obtain peace in our relationships, and a full
share of your charism of love and peace, unity and
Ask this for us from His Divine Majesty,
through His Beloved Son and in the power of the Holy
Spirit: the one Trinity, whom you so much loved and
adored during and through your life. Unworthy though
we are, we make this prayer today, offering you our
affection as devoted members of your family, and
trusting in your love and intercession. AMEN.
St Angela Merici (Setswana)
Saint Angela Merici
Our saint - Who is she?
Why is she so important to us?
Angela Merici o tshotswe ka ngwaga wa 1474 mo motsaneng mongwe wa Italy o o bidiwang Desenzano, kwa bokoni jwa
Italy. Rragwe ene ele molemi mme mmaagwe e ne ele motho yo tle tseng tshlamo. Otshidle ka nako e Europa ene e
simolola go tlhabologa.
Bontle jwa tikologo e aneng mogo yone ya legae mo tidimalong le kgodiso ya se Kreste e a e tseneng mo batsading jwa
mo dira gonna mokneste yoo tileng. Lorato lwa ga Angela mo Modimong le mo bathong ba bangwe le ne le itshupa ka
borapedi jwa gagwe le ditiro tse dintle.
Ka 1535 Angela o simolola Company ya St Ursula e le bokopano jwa bomme le basetsana ba ba bereki. Mme ba rata go
direla Modimo ka maitsholo a mantle ba tshela ka bonolo le mo khumanegong. Se ene ce tsela se bothokwa go likgethela
bagolo jang ka nako e bomme ba neng ba ka lthophela magaring ga lenyalo le botshelo jwa baithlami.
Fa e sale nako e o mo ngwageng di feta makgolo a mane, kopano ya Ursulines e setse e lekantse lefatshe ka bophara,
moya a o Boitshepho o ba goga go dira le go direla batho. Boteng jwa tumelo ya rona ya semoya e tiotloma tswa ke
maikano a rona a gore,
'Go Galaletsa Modimo fela'
Companions of St Angela ba simolotswe ka 1955, ba tseile moya wa ga Angela.