RSHM Goals and Criteria

The Institute of the Religious of the Sacred Heart of Mary (RSHM), was founded in Béziers, France, in 1849 by Ven. Jean Gailhac and Mère St. Jean. From its very foundation, the first religious community was drawn to the educational apostolate.

Since that time, the Sisters have been engaged in the ministry of education in sixteen countries on four continents. In the late nineteenth century, the first schools were established in the United States. While the education of the whole person is the general aim of all schools, Sacred Heart of Mary schools are committed to the attainment of this goal through a deep personal belief in God, who calls each person to the fullness of life.

The mission of the Religious of the Sacred Heart of Mary is:

"To know and love God,To make God known and loved, 

to proclaim that Jesus Christ has come in order 

that all may have life." 

(RSHM Constitutions #7)

This mission finds expression in the following Goals and Criteria by which an educational institution is identified as belonging to the RSHM network. These goals are implemented within a school community which is composed of Board of Trustees, Board of Regents, administrators, faculty, staff, parents, students, graduates and former students.

Goals and Criteria of the RSHM Schools

Goal 1: To foster a personal relationship with God.
As a school community:

1. We make God known and loved through Christian living rooted in Gospel values.
2. We welcome and respect the diverse religions of the world.
3. We empower each individual to understand, live and bear witness to her or his faith, in a respectful awareness of others beliefs.
4. We promote personal and communal prayer and reflection through liturgies, multi-faith services and retreats.
5. We encourage sacramental preparation and active participation in worship.
6. We explore in our religious education program the relationship of humanity to God, through the study of Scriptures, history, traditions, theology, spirituality and ethical system.
7. We participate in the life of the local Catholic church and pursue positive relationships with the wider community.

Goal 2: To create unity through diversity.
As a school community:

1. We create an atmosphere of respect, forgiveness, openness and joy.
2. We cherish each of our members and are sensitive to the diverse talents, abilities and needs of each one.
3. We nurture positive and co-operative working relationships among and between students, parents, administration, faculty and staff.
4. We celebrate and share our diverse cultures and national traditions to enhance international understanding.
5. We foster an appreciation for the culture and customs of the country in which we live.
6. We maintain positive relationships with other schools and educational organizations.

Goal 3: To Instil a life-long love of learning.
As a school community:

1. We provide an educational program of the highest standard that recognizes and develops each individual's potential in a stimulating environment.
2. We ensure balanced intellectual growth through an integrated curriculum.
3. We educate our students to communicate clearly, live cooperatively and function effectively in a global and technological society.
4. We develop an informed awareness of beauty in the universe.
5. We enable students to study and research independently, to think critically, to reflect wisely and to have informed opinions.
6. We maintain a high level of professional development.

Goal 4: To encourage and affirm personal growth.
As a school community:

1. We are dedicated to the harmonious growth of the whole person through each individual's physical, emotional, intellectual, social, moral and spiritual development.
2. We conduct our relationships according to the principles of honesty, compassion, truthfulness.
3. We promote a high standard of self-discipline and instill a deep sense of personal responsibility.
4. We provide opportunities to develop skills for effective decision making and leadership.
5. We cultivate growth in self-knowledge and self-esteem.
6. We encourage appropriate independent action and effective participation in the community.
7. We promote a positive and responsible attitude toward physical and mental well-being.

Goal 5: To awaken a consciousness of social justice.
As a school community:

1. We respect the sacredness of life and recognize the kinship of all people as God's children.
2. We integrate social justice and human rights issues into the curriculum.
3. We actively and compassionately respond to the needs of others, especially the powerless, the deprived and the marginalized.
4. We are committed to an active social service program.
5. We promote awareness of the interdependence and unity of all life.

Goal 6: To fulfil the mission of the Religious of the Sacred Heart of Mary “That all may have life.”
As a school community:

1. We share the spirituality, history, and traditions of the Religious of the Sacred Heart of Mary and their Founders.
2. We are attentive to living the distinctive spirit of the RSHM mission, "That all may have life".
3. We foster and sustain the RSHM spirit through programs in the formation of others for partnership and leadership within the school, a Catholic school, in a multi-faith setting.
4. We continue our partnership with the RSHM ministries in Africa, and support others needs identified by the General Chapter of the Institute.
5. We participate in the network of RSHM schools throughout the world.