In 1916 with the foundation of a four-year Catholic College, the Immaculate Heart Congregation made a definite statement as to the importance of education in their own lives and as a treasure to be shared with the Church and larger community of Los Angeles. Thus began a chapter in the history of education in this Archdiocese that has been unparalleled. In the 1930s and 1940s the IHM Sisters staffed numerous schools throughout the Archdiocese from Santa Barbara to the San Gabriel area. It was an excellent preparation for the phenomenal population growth of the mid-1940s to the mid-1960s. With a weekly influx of 1,000 Catholics into the area, the IHM Sisters welcomed the opportunity to staff Archdiocesan schools and share with the people of Los Angeles their great love and thirst for education.When the IHM Congregation realized there was not a sufficient number of Sisters to staff the burgeoning schools, it showed its resourcefulness by turning to other countries for help. Mother Eucharia Harney went to Ireland to recruit women religious for the Archdiocese. As these women arrived, the IHM Sisters opened their convents to welcome them.From the time of arrival of Sisters from Ireland, Hungary, India and other countries, and as long as they needed special guidance, the IHM Sisters assisted them with respect, gentleness and generosity. They assured their new teaching colleagues that all would be well and all manner of things would be well, and they were!In the 1930s and 1940s the IHM Sisters staffed numerous schools throughout the Archdiocese from Santa Barbara to the San Gabriel area. It was an excellent preparation for the phenomenal population growth of the mid-1940s to the mid-1960s.After the Second Vatican Council in the 1960s, a number of the IHM Sisters chose to be dispensed from their vows and pursued various avenues of service to the Church. Those who remained in the Congregation continued their educational ministry in the post-Vatican II era in Southern California from their Motherhouse in the Los Feliz area. Their leadership, foreseeing that the Congregation might look to new forms of ministry, arranged with the Archdiocese for the care and well-being of their diminishing membership.In 2005 the department of the Holy See known as the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life appointed Father Thomas Anslow, C.M., as its “Pontifical Commissary” to run and guide the affairs of the IHM Sisters with the authority of a Superior General and answerable directly to the Holy See. Since then, seven of the Sisters have relocated from their Motherhouse to a variety of retirement facilities. Now, the IHM Congregation is starting a new chapter as the three members who still reside at the Motherhouse begin the process of joining the others in two of these facilities.Father Anslow noted, “This transition will allow these wonderful women of faith and service to have the health and living assistance they need at this time as well as the spiritual resources and the companionship and support of fellow religious.” “While they may be increasingly frail,” he added, “most of these women are still vigorous in their own way and pursue some form of active ministry.”With this new chapter, the presence of the Congregation will continue in the Archdiocese through its remaining members. The IHM Sisters will also continue to have their Motherhouse which they plan to make available on a limited basis as a retreat center and for in-service education of teachers and principals, and for other adult education efforts.This article was prepared for The Tidings by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.