Venerable Marie-Josephte Fitzbach

Also known as

  • Marie of the Sacred Heart
  • Marie-Josephte Roy


Born to a poor family, Marie received no education and left home at age 13 to work as a domestic servant in Quebec City; she spent part of her pay for a seminarian to teach her to reading, writing and arithmetic. Marie felt drawn to religious life, but when her employer’s wife died, she accepted his marriage proposal, and she was married on 17 April 1828. Widowed in 1833 with five children to raise. The two step-children moved in with their maternal grand-parents, and Marie dedicated her life to raising her biological daughters; the youngest died of natural causes in 1846, and in 1849 the other two joined the Sisters of Charity in Quebec. Finally on her own at age 43, Marie-Josephte moved to the Hospice of Charity to be close to her daughters and to live the rest of her life in silence and prayer. Soon, however, Marie was asked to run a shelter for women released from jail, and on 11 January 1850 she took charge of Saint Magdalen’s Refuge in Quebec City. To staff the Refuge she helped found the Congregation of the Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Good Shepherd Sisters on 2 February 1856. Mrs Roy took the name Mother Mary of the Sacred Heart and served as the first superior.




MLA Citation

  • “Venerable Marie-Josephte Fitzbach“. CatholicSaints.Info. 16 April 2015. Web. 26 October 2021. <>