in Contested identities
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The efforts of women religious in encouraging religious practice and devotions were essential in the battle against 'leakage', and women's congregations had an important role in the work of salvation of nineteenth-century England and Wales. Women's Catholic congregations often concentrated their efforts on women and children. The medium used most often by women's congregations to evangelise the Catholic family was education, although their efforts in health care and social welfare also aimed to place the Catholic faith at the heart of the family unit. This chapter examines women religious as religious activists and links the services they performed to their religious identity. The missionary identity of women religious was a facet of their religious identity: they were active in both domestic and international missionary work. The chapter also examines their missionary identity as missionaries in England, the home mission field.

Contested identities

Catholic women religious in nineteenth-century England and Wales


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