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Mission and History

Hands with candleMission and Vision

Mary's Pence invests in women across the Americas by funding community initiatives and fostering collaborations to create social change.

We envision a world where empowered women and their communities flourish in solidarity and justice.


For over 25 years Mary’s Pence has been giving grants to women’s organizations. We supported the initial stages of many small women’s organizations.

  • Grants totaling over $1,500,000, funding over 500 projects, in 15 countries.
  • Sponsored 9 ESPERA Funds – lending pools owned and managed by a women’s network - in El Salvador, Nicaragua, Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras and Haiti.
  • Provided opportunity for people of faith to support social change.

Our Creation Story

A group of women met at a time when few foundations were paying attention to the needs of women and children. Our founder, Maureen Gallagher, OP took her concerns to prayer and imagined herself before God who asked, “What did you do to help women minister?” Sister Maureen answered, “I’m a woman, I couldn’t do anything.” And God asked her again, “What did you do?” And she gathered women leaders from many walks of life to create Mary’s Pence.

Founding Board

Founding Board, Kaye Ashe OP (1930-2014), Carol Coston OP, Maureen Gallagher OP (founding coordinator), Edwina Gateley, Janemarie Luecke OSB (1924-1987), Amata Miller IHM, Sheila Murphy, R. Muschal-Reinhardt (1933-2013), Rosemary Radford Ruether, Mary Luke Tobin, SL (1908-2006), Yolanda Tarango, CCVI, Margaret Traxler SSND (1924-2002), Teresita Weind SNDdeN


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