St. Clare Monastery

The Clares at prayer in the Monastery of St. Clare

On June 24, 2020, we celebrated the 30th anniversary of the founding of our Cincinnati monastery. We began 30 years ago because three Poor Clares in three different monasteries heard the Holy Spirit’s call and responded to that call to live a new expression of Poor Clare life in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati.

Poor Clares

Poor Clare Sisters Doris Gerke, Anna Marie Covely, and Dianne Short in 1990

Our 1990 foundation was 115 years in the making. In 1875, Mother Mary Magdelene Bentivoglio was sent to the United States by Pope Pius IX to establish a Poor Clare Monastery, but she was turned away from several dioceses, including Cincinnati. In 1956, a second attempt was made to establish a Poor Clare Monastery in Cincinnati, but that request was also denied.

Then, in 1990, the Friars of St. John the Baptist Province invited, and Archbishop Daniel Pilarczyk welcomed, our Sisters Doris Gerke, Dianne Short and Anna Marie Covely to the Archdiocese of Cincinnati. Today, our numbers have more than tripled, growing into a community of 10 solemnly professed sisters (our monastery is built for a total of 12 sisters). We continue to walk with women in initial discernment and remain ready to welcome new vocations so our Poor Clare way of life in Cincinnati continues for years to come.

The Covid-19 pandemic has changed all our lives. We miss our visitors and guests who usually share Mass and Liturgy of the Hours with us. Although we are not together in physical location, we are always connected by our faith and love. Instead of a public Mass and celebration for our 30th Anniversary, we had a private Mass and small celebration with Fr. William Farris, OFM. During our celebration, we shared memories of the early days and our hopes for the future. Know that we are here to pray for you, and we welcome your prayer requests.

Ask the Poor Clares to pray for your intentions on their website: poorclarescincinnati.org