Maitland, New South Wales, Australia
The Catholic Diocese of Maitland was established in 1886 with the Right Rev Dr James Murray serving as Bishop. Presiding over the spiritual well-being of Catholics residing in a geographic area that spread north all the way to the Queensland border and west as far as far as could be reached, Bishop Murray knew the task was enormous, much too big for the Sisters of the Good Samaritan, who arrived in the area two years earlier, to deal with on their own.
Recognising the tradition of the Dominicans as educators, and acknowledging Catholic education in the diocese as a priority, he called upon their Irish leaders to support a long term plan. Dominican Sisters provided a unique possibility. Not only could they continue the work of the schools for the less fortunate, as did the Josephites and Good Samaritan Sisters, but they could also educate young women who would have the financial backing and social standing to become the first of generations of Catholic teachers for the people of the Maitland Diocese.