History of the order of the Incarnate Word and Blessed Sacrament in Houston, Texas



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The present work traces the history of the Sisters of the Incarnate Word and Blessed Sacrament, with special emphasis on their accomplishments in the Diocese of Galveston. After a brief introduction outlining the aims, purposes, and objectives of Christian education, the first chapter gives a few necessary highlights in the early history of the Order in France and in the life of the Holy Foundress. Chapter two deals with the establishment of the Order in Texas and the trials and hardships of the pioneer Sisters in a strange land. The advances made by the Sisters in the field of Christian education is reviewed from its first, weak beginning down to the present day. The third chapter traces in detail the growth and development of the Incarnate Word Academy, from the time the first classes were held in a half-finished building in January of 1874, until it was demolished in June of 1948, The many sacrifices and achievements of our founding mothers are stressed, as well as the many acts of kindness and generosity of our friends all down the years. The primary work of the Order in the Diocese of Galveston, namely, the education and instruction of youth in the parochial schools, is developed in the fourth chapter. Each school directed by the Sisters is discussed separately, and all historical incidents of any significance are brought to the attention of the reader. A new field—that of mission school work—entered into by the Sisters in 1919, is the subject of chapter five. Since this was somewhat new and since it was undertaken by way of experiment, this field is given more prominence. Another sphere of activity dear to the order is the instruction of Sunday school classes. With this is closely associated the work in vacation schools. The accomplishment of the Sisters in both of these tasks is noted in the sixth chapter. The final chapter describes and explains the Novitiate and its purposes. Here it is, that young Sisters are trained for their life work as religious teachers. On this Novitiate training depends all undertakings of the Sisters in every house; hence, this is the last chapter, but one of the greatest importance to the furtherance and advancement of the Order of the Incarnate Word and Blessed Sacrament.