Saint Mary Joseph Rosello

Saint Mary Joseph RoselloAlso known as

  • Benedetta Rossello
  • Benedicta Rossello
  • Josepha Rossello
  • Maria Giuseppe Rossello
  • Maria Joseph Rollo
  • Sister Mary-Joseph



One of nine children, her father was a potter. Born in poverty, she suffered from poor health all her life. Pious from early youth she tried to enter a religious order, but was refused admission due to her health and lack of dowry. The pious, childless couple she worked for could have given her a dowry, but would not because they did not want to lose her as member of their family. Franciscan tertiary at age 16.

Her bishop knew of her skill in teaching the faith to girls, and in 1837 he gave her a house which she and three other young women made into two classrooms. From this humble beginning came the Institute of the Daughters of Mercy in 1837 under the protection of Our Lady of Mercy and Saint Joseph, groups devoted to teaching the young, and caring for the sick. Any deserving girl would be accepted into the community, even without a dowry. Mary Joseph served as superior of this band of teachers for over 40 years. In 1875 they opened their first house in the Americas at Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Josepha’s success and personal holiness were such that her bishop, over strong objection from many, allowed her to organize a group that encouraged vocations to the priesthood.




Additional Information


The hands should be at work, the heart with God. Saint Mary Joseph

MLA Citation

  • “Saint Mary Joseph Rosello“. CatholicSaints.Info. 17 September 2021. Web. 27 September 2021. <>