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Our Story

St Aloysius College is a Catholic school for girls established by the Sisters of Mercy in 1880.

The Congregation of the Sisters of Mercy had its formal beginnings in Ireland on 12 December 1831. Catherine McAuley, in response to the needs of the time, established an institution particularly for the care and education of less advantaged girls and young women. 

Since that first foundation, the Congregation has continued to act in response to contemporary needs in society. As part of this heritage, St Aloysius College was set up in Adelaide to educate women to realise their potential and to contribute more fully to the wider community. The Mercy Mission demands a particular commitment to the life of Jesus Christ with a call to proclaim, to liberate and to heal.

At St Aloysius College, the Spirit of Mercy lives on... a spirit of loving kindness, an awareness of the worth and needs of others and a willingness to serve.

As testimony to our Mercy philosophy is the calibre of the young women who graduate from the College:

  • young women of strength and integrity
  • young women with a strong sense of social justice
  • young women who possess the gentle, compassionate humanity which is Mercy.

St Aloysius College is a specialised form of local Church in which Christian formation takes place. In the day to day ministries of the school there is an emphasis on the love of God and future unity for all creation.

The Fleur de Lis

The Fleur de Lis is a variety of lily which is often used as the emblem of royalty. It was chosen by St Louis, King of France, as a symbol of dedication, consistency of purpose and strength of friendship.

Our Motto

The words ‘Loyal en Tout’ incorporated in the emblem may be translated as ‘Loyal in All’. These words refer to the loyalty which each student has to God, to others, to the school and to themselves.

St Aloysius Gonzaga

Born on 9 March 1568, Aloysius Gonzaga was the son and heir to the Duke of Castiglione in Lombardy and Marta Tana, companion to Isabel of Valois.

The Gonzagas were a very powerful and wealthy family. Despite growing up surrounded by this wealth, by the time he was seventeen Aloysius was committed to a life of prayer and penance. In 1585, he waived his right of succession in favour of his brother and joined the Society of Jesus.

When the plague broke out in Rome he worked among the sick of the city, finally contracting the disease himself to die on 21 June 1591. Despite his youth, Aloysius displayed enormous talent and wisdom and was often involved as a mediator.

As the patron saint of young students, St Aloysius Gonzaga is a fitting patron saint for the College, and he is honoured on 21 June.

Catherine McAuley

Catherine McAuley, Founder of the Sisters of Mercy, was born on 29 September 1778 in Dublin, Ireland. Catherine’s early life instilled in her a great compassion for the poor of Dublin and in 1824 she leased a property in Baggott Street Dublin which would become the House of Mercy.

The House of Mercy flourished and hundreds of girls enrolled in the school. It also became a home for young servant girls and the visitation of the sick was added to the activities of the House of Mercy under Catherine's care.

Catherine’s vision for educating young women and actively attending to the needs of the poor underpins Mercy ministries around the world today.