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And yet different

Zusters van Liefde van Onze Lieve Vrouw, Moeder van Barmhartigheid 1960/2000

A. van der Veen, D. Verhoeven
Uitgeverij Verloren b.v., 2005

ISBN: 9789065508683


Nuns in the turbulent 1960s and beyond, that was the subject of this historical study. On the basis of archive material, but especially on the basis of many conversations with sisters, we looked for essential changes as well as constants in a congregation more than a century and a half old.


A wave of renewal rolled through Western society in the 1960s, including the Catholic churches and monasteries. Just about everything changed in the lives of monastics: their work, their way of life, their appearance and how they interacted with each other and others. Many dropped out, others developed a new way of being religious within monastic life. This book shows how this process of change took place among the ‘Sisters of Tilburg’, as they are popularly known. They form the largest Dutch sister congregation with branches in more than ten countries, spread over four continents. Based on archive research and many interviews, a varied picture emerged: of joy over new opportunities, of pain over the loss of traditions, of uncertainty about the new course, but above all of the struggle to remain united as a group while allowing members to be different.