SND foundation established in 1924

In 1924, six Sisters of Notre Dame arrived in Japan to assume responsibility for a girls’ high school in Okayama. Anti-American sentiments were strong in Japan at the time, though the Sisters had a single-mindedness which focused their attention and energies on their religious life, their mission of evangelization, and their primary task of education.

On December 8, 1941, when war was declared, the American Sisters were interned in a camp near Hiroshima. Three Japanese Sisters and other dedicated Japanese educators continued the work of the Notre Dame Sisters in Okayama. When the war ended, the American Sisters returned to their convent and school to pick up the pieces and helped build upon the wonderful progress made while they were imprisoned. The government and people of Okayama admired their loyalty and dedication to education and responded with respect and gratitude. The Notre Dame school flourished after the war ended, and today Japanese Sisters continue the many wonderful works begun by the American Sisters. Today, the Japanese government and Japanese society are grateful for the presence, the works and the contributions made to Japan by the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur – those from Japan and those from the United States.

Our Sisters in Japan exist as a significant part of the small Christian presence in a predominantly Buddhist/Shinto culture.

Ministries in Japan
  • Education
  • Missionary Work
  • Vocational Work
  • Administration
  • Apostolate of Prayer