Mission Statement and Ethos


History of the Presentation Congregation

Nano Nagle founded the Institute of the Charitable Instruction of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, on Christmas Eve, 1775, in Cork, Ireland. This foundation was the fruit of more than twenty years of loving service to the poor of that city where she had founded her first school as a lay woman, in 1754.

The purpose of the foundation was to ensure the continuation and extension of the work of Nano and her companions for the education of the poor, the evangelisation of her people, and the relief of those exploited by the Penal Laws.

Nano Nagle was born into a wealthy Catholic family and so had the advantage of a Catholic education in her own home and in France. She was assured also of a comfortable future. But Nano heard the call of God in the cry of the poor, condemned as they were to ignorance, superstition and loss of faith.

Conscious of her own weakness, she resisted the call, but, after much suffering and heart-searching, Nano did respond. From that moment her response was lived out in her wholehearted dedication to the cause of Catholic education and to the relief of misery and social ills wherever she discovered them. At great personal and family risk, Nano began her mission among the poor in the “little school” in Cove Lane, Cork in 1754. Within a short period she had schools in several parts of the city. While her immediate mission was confined to her native city, Nano’s understanding of mission was universal. She recognised the potential of the poor and of youth to minister to one another.

Urged on by her faith in her own mission and by her desire to give stability to her works, Nano eventually founded a religious society in 1775 – the Sisters of the Charitable Instruction of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. At the age of sixty-six, surrounded by her small community of three Sisters, Nano Nagle died in Cork in 1784.

It was not until 1791 that Pope Pius VI granted the Institute qualified papal approval. Because of the nature of their apostolate, the Sisters took simple vows and were not bound to enclosure. However, difficult historical and social circumstances of the period caused significant changes in the Institute’s manner of life. In 1805, Pope Pius VII, at the request of the congregation, approved new constitutions that incorporated the profession of solemn vows and a rule of enclosure. At the same time the Institute was given its official title: The Congregation of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

From small beginnings in Cork city, the Congregation spread to many towns in Ireland and thence to several parts of the world.


Presentation Philosophy of Education

Nano responded to the needs of her time and developed an educational curriculum suitable to her students. To-day, Nano Nagle is regarded as one of the great pioneers of Catholic education. Her work laid the foundation for a voluntary school system in Ireland. Her spirit and tradition inspire the Presentation Philosophy of Education.

Presentation Education draws inspiration from and is guided by the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the spirit and life of Nano Nagle, the teachings of the Catholic Church and our Constitutions:

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Christ King Girls Secondary School is a Voluntary Catholic Secondary School for girls only, operating under the Trusteeship of CEIST which supports the Religious and Educational Philosophy of the Foundress of the Presentation Order, Nano Nagle.

Everything we do at Christ King is encompassed the goals of our Mission Statement:

  • To respect the uniqueness of the individual.
  • We are committed to providing an environment within which the development of intellectual and spiritual values is of prime importance.
  • We hope this mission will be fulfilled in co-operation and partnership with pupils, parents and the wider community.

Key Elements of CEIST

Promoting Spiritual and Human Development

We believe a knowledge of and a personal relationship with Jesus Christ give meaning and purpose to our lives.

Achieving Quality in Teaching and Learning

We are committed to excellence and to continually improving the quality of teaching and learning.

Showing Respect for Every Person

We respect the unique and intrinsic value of every person

Creating Community

Our Schools are faith communities of welcome and hospitality where Gospel values are lived and where there is special care for those most in need.

Being Just and Responsible

We seek to act justly and responsibly in all our relationships.


South Douglas Road, Cork, Co. Cork, Ireland.
021 496 1448
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