They may be one of the oldest religious orders for women, but the Poor Sisters of Saint Clare are refusing to fall behind the times.

The community of cloistered contemplatives was founded by St. Francis of Assisi and St. Clare of Assisi in 1212. Now, 70 years after arriving in the Archdiocese of Vancouver, the Poor Clares are celebrating by launching a modern website that could rival the online presence of most religious congregations.

They have also begun offering online vocation events due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Their homepage describes the life of a Poor Clare as one of “simple joys, hard work, and loving sisterhood.” Members of the community live under vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience, and they treasure silence and solitude while also staying prayerfully – and virtually – connected with the global Church.

The Poor Clares’ first home in B.C. was in Victoria in 1911. They landed in the Archdiocese of Vancouver in 1950 and took up residence in New Westminster.

In 1962 the convent moved to Mission to be near Westminster Abbey and the Benedictine monks who could more easily serve the convent as chaplains and confessors.

Learn more about the Poor Clares at and the photo collection below.