Daughters of Divine Charity
The Congregation of the Daughters of Divine Charity was founded by Mother Franciska Lechner in 1868 in Vienna, Austria. She became aware of the situation of poor country girls who came to the large cities of Europe to find employment. They were often exposed to physical and moral dangers and she felt impelled to provide them with shelter and the protection of a sound grounding in their Christian Faith. This vision grew into residences for women in large cities, schools, and small country classrooms in dozens of countries in the world. Care for women included retired servants who often had no place to go. As a result homes for the elderly were founded so they could find a quiet religious atmosphere in their retirement.
In 1968, the Congregation, in response to the mandate of the Second Vatican Council, held its special Chapter of Renewal and Adaptation according to the teachings of that Council. Common reflection on the title of the Congregation led to the adoption of a new emblem symbolizing the Blessed Trinity, the origin of the divine love which the Sisters want to make visible in their convent communities and the world by, "Doing good, giving joy, making happy and leading to the Kingdom of Heaven" (Mother Franciska).
As an International Religious Congregation we are present in 17 countries world wide. From its 1868 foundation in Austria the Congregation of the Daughters of Divine Charity spread quickly, first to many European countries and later to North and South America. In 1992 and 1998 respectively the Polish Province established missions in Bolivia and the Ukraine. As soon as Albania was freed after 40 years of Communism the Divine Providence Province established a mission there in 1992. An international community went to Rushooka, Uganda in October 1998 following an invitation to help in the mission to the people of God in that area.