North Belgium 1968
In 1806, at the request of the bishop, Mgr Fallot de Beaumont, Mère Julie arrived in Flanders where she opened a convent at Saint Nicolas. Thus, sisters with a Netherlands language entered the congregation. Marie Steenhaut was the first Flemish novice. After the closure of Saint Nicolas in May 1809, Mère Julie sent sisters to Ghent and to Zele in 1811.
The foundation of the North Belgian Province was approved by the General Chapter 1968/69. The desire of the sisters to separate themselves from the French speaking sisters was the result of the history of Belgium and the desire of Flanders to be emancipated. In 1962, several Belgian laws established the linguistic border in Belgium with Flandres in the North and Wallonie in the South. At the same time, the Belgian sisters divided their province into two distinct linguistic regions.
The sisters of North Belgium have been very active in education especially at Nouveau-Bois in Ghent, a school known by Mère Julie. The Flemish sisters have sent missionaries to the Congo and Brazil. At the present time, they give service in various areas: they give lessons in Flemish to undocumented women and lessons in arithmetic to children. They support unwed mothers and visit elderly and sick persons. The sisters are also involved in parish ministry and in social work.