Posts Tagged ‘St. Vincent de Paul’

A home for “friendless French girls”

August 4, 2008

About 125 women currently live in the Jeanne D’Arc Home, a residence hotel on Eighth Avenue and 24th Street run by an order of nuns. It’s probably the only residency in the city, single-sex or otherwise, that has its own chapel, and one of the few that prohibits men past the front desk. 

The home has an interesting history. An original brick building was put up in 1896 by the Fathers of Mercy of the Church of St. Vincent de Paul, a Catholic church on 23rd Street that still holds mass in French. The home was to be a place where “friendless French girls who come to this country” could establish themselves and find work as “femmes de chambre, bonnes d’enfant, and gouvernantes,” as an 1896 New York Times article explains. 

Though the women living there now represent all nationalities, the home still maintains a very Catholic purpose: to care for the spiritual and temporal needs of women, as a mission statement in the foyer reads.