Religious Sisters of Mercy in Jamaica


The story of Alpha is the story of the Religious Sisters of Mercy in Jamaica.

All Sisters of Mercy worldwide trace our roots to our founder, Catherine McAuley, an Irish Catholic laywoman. Catherine recognized the many needs of people who were economically poor in early nineteenth century Ireland and determined that she and women like her could make a difference.

Spending her inheritance, she opened the first House of Mercy on Lower Baggot Street in Dublin, Ireland on September 24, 1827, a place to shelter and educate women and girls.  Impressed by her good works, the Archbishop of Dublin advised her to establish a religious congregation. Three years later on December 12, 1831, Catherine and two companions became the first Sisters of Mercy. In the 10 years between the founding and her death, she established 14 independent foundations in Ireland and England.

Our work in Jamaica

The first Sisters of Mercy arrived in Jamaica from Bermondsey, England in 1890. Since then, the RSM in Jamaica have established and continue to host 5 schools on the original 26 South Camp Road property in Kingston  (Jessie Ripoll Primary, Alpha Infant, Alpha Primary, Convent of Mercy Academy (Alpha Academy for Girls) and Alpha Boys School (now called Alpha Institute).

The Laws Street Adult Training Centre in downtown Kingston operated by Sister Benedict serves adult training and basic needs. And the St John Bosco Children’s Home (click here) in the Hatfield community of Mandeville in the central parish of Manchester, is a residential facility providing educational and vocational training to 150 boys 8 to 18 years old.

The Religious Sisters of Mercy in Jamaica are associated with the South Central community based in Belmont, North Carolina.

Learn more about the Religious Sisters of Mercy

For more information about the RSM please visit the RSM website online at