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Cultivating leaders for life at Gwynedd Mercy Academy HS

In Dublin, Ireland in 1827, a devout Catholic woman named Catherine McAuley decided to build a home where she would educate and shelter poor girls. Catherine eventually founded the Sisters of Mercy, a religious congregation with a mission centered on service to the poor.

Catherine’s vision of educating women as a means to spread Christian values and effect social change inspired the Sisters of Mercy to establish a Catholic, independent, college-preparatory, secondary school for young women in 1861, known today as Gwynedd Mercy Academy High School.

Committed to academic, spiritual, and social development of young women, Gwynedd offers a challenging curriculum, extra-curricular activities, service opportunities and retreat experiences, individualized attention and encouragement towards personal growth, in the classroom and beyond.

Recently Gwynedd students journeyed to Dublin, Ireland for the Young Mercy Leaders Pilgrimage, along with other Mercy students from around the world. Excerpts from student reflections provide observations of Mercy history and insight into impacting change in our life.

The foundation of a good leader is built on confidence. When defining a leader, terms often include, “powerful, strong, challenging, bold.” When thinking of Mercy foundress Catherine, words such as “kind, gentle, and compassionate,” are conjured.

“Can a leader be both gentle and strong? Can a woman be both kind and bold?” The answer is yes as evidenced in the life of Catherine herself, the true embodiment of a Mercy leader. We are called to show leadership through kindness and compassion for the marginalized.

Ask yourself each morning, “How can I best love today?” Those words may grant you peace in knowing that you have acknowledged a calling of Mercy leaders, that of loving others in the best way possible. 

This is the Mercy Difference.

PHOTO CAP: Gwynedd Girls arrive at Catherine McAuley’s home for Young Mercy Leaders Conference in Dublin, Ireland. Left to right: Erin Cassidy ’18, Michaela Moore ’18, Payton Campbell ’19, Grace Kelly ’18, Holly Grosse ’18, Lizzy Lange ’19, Carly Bachinsky ’19, Alyssa Martin ’19, Meghan Dutill ’19.