The Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary were founded in Longueuil, Quebec in 1843. The three founding women of this Congregation were Mother Marie Rose Durocher, Mother Mary Agnes Dufresne, and Mother Mary Madeleine Cere. In 1859 twelve Sisters of the Holy Names arrived in Portland and established St. Mary’s Academy. In 1893 they began Marylhurst College as the first liberal arts college to serve the educational needs of Northwest women.
In 1908 the Sisters purchased land between Lake Oswego and West Linn. The Sisters named this pastoral land Marylhurst, which means “Mary’s Woods.” Today, the Sisters are an international congregation of religious women. They carry the fire of Marie Rose Durocher into a wider world of education that embraces parish communities and diverse populations working toward a more just world.