The Church which “goes forth” is a community of missionary disciples who take the first step, who are involved and supportive, who bear fruit and rejoice. An evangelizing community knows that the Lord has taken the initiative, He has loved us first, and therefore we can move forward, boldly take the initiative, go out to others, seek those who have fallen away, stand at the crossroads and welcome the outcast. Such a community has an endless desire to show mercy, the fruit of its own experience of the power of the Father’s infinite mercy. (Evangelii Gaudium 24)

Greyfriars Convent in Elgin, Scotland dates back to 1479, when the Order of Friars Minor, founded by Saint Francis of Assisi built a friary for living Franciscan religious life and for charitable works in the Elgin community. Parts of the convent became a ruin after the Reformation. All was rebuilt in 1898 through the beneficence and vision of the third Marquis of Bute, John Crichton-Stuart who allowed the newly-arrived Sisters of Mercy to use it for a religious house. In 1944 his heir, Colum Crichton-Stuart donated the convent to the Sisters of Mercy with the provision that should they leave, the property would pass into the hands of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Aberdeen. Greyfriars Convent once again became a centre of Catholic religious life and good works, as the Sisters of Mercy trained young women in the religious life and ran schools throughout Moray County. The sisters found it necessary to withdraw from Greyfriars in 2010, and thus the property passed into the hands of the Diocese of Aberdeen.

dominican sisters of st cecilia in scotland, elgin, scotland, nashville dominicans in scotland,,Right Reverend Hugh Gilbert, OSB, bishop of the Diocese of AberdeenIn 2013 at the request of Right Reverend Hugh Gilbert, OSB, bishop of the Diocese of Aberdeen, the Dominican Sisters of St. Cecilia were invited to serve in the Diocese of Aberdeen, for the purpose of providing faith formation opportunities to the people of the diocese. Four sisters of the community were sent, residing in Greyfriars Convent, Elgin. The sisters engage in various apostolates in Scotland: volunteering in local Catholic schools’ religious education programs; providing sacramental preparation for the local parish; St. Sylvester’s; running youth groups; planning and conducting retreats and days of recollection for teenagers, young adults, and adults; leading Catholic Faith Formation series for adults; and giving talks to parishes, university groups, and schools when requested. The Dominican Sisters of St. Cecilia are grateful for the opportunity to serve alongside other religious, priests, and laity who are working in the new evangelization.

For more information about retreats or other events in hosted by our sisters in Scotland, click here or email email