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Salesian Spirituality

Spirituality is everywhere at Visitation. It is lived by the Sisters who call Visitation home and alive in our classrooms, hallways, and Chapel. Our teachers offer companionship on students’ spiritual journeys.

Salesian Spirituality is the summation of the teachings of our spiritual co-founders, St. Francis de Sales and St. Jane de Chantal, who founded the Visitation Order more than 400 years ago in France. They recognized the importance of spiritual direction for lay people; this is the spirituality that Visitation teaches and models today.

Salesian Spirituality is a universal, practical spirituality, appropriate for any person at any time. Fundamentally, it encourages us to trust in God’s loving providence as we walk through our days—and it provides common sense guidance on how best to do this.

Our embrace of Salesian Spirituality makes religious exploration particularly transformative for young women. Visitation Order co-founder St. Francis de Sales spoke of the power of Little Virtuesvalues like kindness, patience, and cheerful optimism.

Sr. Marguerite Marie in the garden

The Sisters have always lived Salesian Spirituality. Previously, students absorbed it through the presence of the Sisters in the classroom and around the school. Recently, the school and Monastery started discussing and teaching Salesian Spirituality in a very intentional way. Today, as lay leaders, our faculty and staff have assumed this responsibility and continue to nurture this spirituality that serves as our community’s foundation.

To safeguard and continue this incomparable way of life, Georgetown Visitation founded the St. Jane de Chantal Salesian Center in May 2016. The Center offers us the assurance of a permanent home for the tangible and intangible treasures of our school history and of the Sisters’ spiritual endowment for generations to come.

“There is nothing so strong as gentleness and nothing so gentle as real strength." St. Francis de Sales


Strong and gentle, proud yet humble, spirited and spiritual, our students embrace the Salesian emphasis on balance, achieving harmony as well as great things. They grow through Christian service and retreats, and develop passion and compassion as they discover themselves and the God-given gifts they can bring to the world.

Little Virtues

Joyful Optimism

"My favorite Little Virtue is Joyful Optimism. We have a joyful spirit here at Visi. It is so noticeable. I think this virtue pairs with perseverance: you can do things happily, even when they're hard - that’s admirable."

Read More about Joyful Optimism
Holy Friendship

"I believe that friends are the foundation of the school. You’ll keep the friends you make each year the rest of your life. All the Little Virtues are reflected in Holy Friendship. Making good friends means being generous, showing simplicity; friendships have to be based off that."

- Maia '22

Read More about Holy Friendship

"Generosity includes many of the other virtues, and is a crucial part of life. A simple act of generosity can make someone’s day, which is why I appreciate the idea of spreading goodness to others."

- Makaela '24

Read More about Generosity

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Salesian Spirituality 101

Though Salesian Spirituality is centuries old, it is still highly relevant in the 21st century because it is based on knowledge of human nature. In addition to our relationship with God, it offers direction on how to navigate life’s relationships and challenges through simple ideas and small actions.

Salesian Programming

To ensure that the Sisters’ gentle, inspired common sense approach to living a faith-filled life continues to endure, flourish, and guide all aspects of a Visitation education into our third century and beyond, Visitation founded the St. Jane de Chantal Salesian Center, which works collaboratively with the Sisters of the Visitation, Salesian Ministry, Campus Ministry, Christian Service, and Religion Departments to create meaningful ways for our lay community to be the hands and voice of our Salesian charism as we witness the Sisters’ beautiful way of Living Jesus.

Salesian Events

  • Founders' Day
  • Salesian Soup for the Soul
  • Pilgrimages to Annecy, France
  • Salesian Leadership Camp

Holding Your Intentions in Prayer

The Sisters hold our  community in prayer each day, and welcome our special intentions. Please email intentions to

Campus Ministry

Visitation's Campus Ministry Office supports students’ spiritual development through Masses, prayer services, in-class talks, and retreats

Christian Service

Caring for others is a fundamental part of our Catholic faith and Salesian tradition, and our Christian Service Program provides girls with opportunities to put their knowledge and beliefs into immediate practice.

Religious Education

Visitation's religion classes contemplate the relationship between faith and reason and examine the world from a Catholic perspective.