A commemorative postage stamp on English Catholic Religious Sister Mary Ward, founder of Sisters of Loreto (The Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary) :
Issued by India
Issued on Feb 2, 2011
Issued for : India Post is happy to issue a commemorative postage stamp on ‘Mary Ward – Loreto Institutions’ to mark 400 years (1609-2009) of the founding experience of Mary Ward.
Stamp, FDC & Cancellation : Alka Sharma
Type : Stamp, Postal Used
Colour : Multicolour
Denomination : 500 Paise
Stamps Printed : 0.4 Million
Printing Process : Wet Offset
Printer : Security Printing Press, Hyderabad
Name : Mary Ward
Born on Jan 23, 1585 at Mulwith, Yorkshire, England
Died on Jan 30, 1645 at Heworth, York, England
- Mary Ward an English Roman Catholic nun, was born on 23rd January 1585 at Old Mulwith, Yorkshire. She was a woman of exceptional abilities, both intellectual and spiritual, endowed with extraordinary foresight and courage.
- She founded an ‘Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary‘ in 1609 at St Omer in France with seven others and began the momentous task of teaching young women. “Fervor is not placed in feelings but in a will to do well, which women may have as well as men. There is no such difference between men and women.” She believed that women in time-to come will do great things. In 1621, she took her famous journey to Rome, walking all the way from Brussels. At Rome she requested non-enclosure for her institute and government by a Superior General. This marked her out as a pioneer, far ahead of her times. However, it was not all smooth sailing for her. She met with opposition from within during the papacy of Pope Urban VIII. Her order was suppressed and in 1631 she was imprisoned. She endured all these suffering with fortitude, perseverance and courage. In 1632, she was released and allowed to restart her work of educating young girls. In 1639, she returned to England and settled with her community in Yorkshire.
- The Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary, known also as ‘Loreto Sisters‘ globally, has also presence at United Nations as a Non-government organization (NGO) that is engaged in education and service to the poor and needy.
- Mary Ward’s vision and way of life was brought to India in 1842. She was pioneer for the role of women in education. What seems ordinary today was startling in her time. Her teachings and work are innovative and revolutionary and have inspired many people down the ages.
- Today, Mary Ward’s teachings and work are being carried on throughout the world. With more than 4000 members branching out on 6 continents, Loreto Institutions are imparting education to more than 70,000 students worldwide.
- In India, Loreto Sisters care for thousands of girls across their educational institutions. Since the Institute was founded ‘to answer a call to sharpen engagement with the world’, it has endeavored to keep pace with rapid social and academic changes which time and circumstances inevitably bring. The institutions in India care for the weak, the oppressed and the marginalized and provide adult literacy classes for deprived young women.
- Mary Ward a leader of originality, faith and daring courage, whose inspiration continues to inspire young women worldwide, to serve the poor even today, believed in ‘doing ordinary things well’. She passed away on 20th January, 1645.
- Text : Based on the text provided by the proponent.