Our Story

The Sisters of Saint Dominic arrived in Blauvelt over 130 years ago.


Since then, their mission to spread God's love, especially to the underprivileged, has allowed them to do great work in Rockland County and the world.


While the ministries of the sisters and associates have undergone many changes, their dedication to the Dominican mission has never wavered.

Learn the story of our History and Heritage.


Before his birth in 1170, Dominic de Guzman’s mother had a dream in which she saw a dog with a burning torch in its mouth racing around the globe. Since the founding of the Order of Preachers (Dominicans) in 1216, women and men aglow with compassion, a burning desire to search for truth, and alight with a love of God have willingly vowed to follow in the footsteps of St. Dominic, who set the world afire through preaching and reaching out to people in need. Over many centuries, St. Dominic's followers have fanned his passion to bring life and love to the world into flame.



Like Saint Dominic and his followers, Mary Ann Sammon was a woman blazing with love of God and God’s children. After immigrating to New York from Ireland, she entered a


While the Sisters never forgot the founding mission of Mother Mary Ann, they responded to the sign of the times by coming out of cloister. As the new century began, requests for teachers arrived from Illinois, and Blauvelt Sisters answered the call. It wasn’t long before schools in the Bronx, Yonkers, Manhattan and many counties along the Hudson River, as well as in Rhode Island, Florida, and New Jersey, were staffed by the our sisters. The Sisters taught in elementary schools, high schools, and colleges; some also ministered to cancer patients, taught the blind, and served as house mothers for orphans in what is now St. Dominic’s Home.

Dominican convent of nuns on Second Street in New York City in 1869. These Sisters had been invited from the cloister in Ratisbon, Bavaria to New York in order to open a school for the children of German immigrants. Seeing the many children wandering the streets, Sister Mary Ann, herself an orphan, recognized the need to establish a home away from the urban streets, where these boys and girls could be cared for and educated. Accompanied by her Superior, Mother Hyacinth, Sister Mary Ann sought a suitable location for an orphanage. The ideal spot was found in Blauveltville, New York where Sister Mary Ann and Mother Hyacinth found a house for sale. So the seed was planted, and in 1878, the ministries began that would spread God’s love and compassion across Rockland County—and the world—for many decades.

Recent News from the Sisters of Saint Dominic

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