Our Heritage

Brigidine Sisters


The Brigidine Sisters are members of a global congregation founded by Bishop Daniel Delany, in Ireland, in 1807. In establishing the congregation, Bishop Delany linked the Brigidine Sisters to the ancient monastic order founded by Saint Brigid in the fifth century, which survived in Ireland until Reformation times.

Saint Brigid's first monastery was founded in Kildare, Ireland. She was a champion of the impoverished and she inspired others to value culture, education and faith. At the invitation of the bishops, Saint Brigid set up convents all over Ireland.

The Brigidine sisters came to Australia in 1883 and currently sponsor secondary schools in Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland and South Australia. They are also committed to working in the areas of primary education, social justice, the environment and pastoral support within parishes.

Our Name and Motto

Mother Margaret Mary Bourke who was Principal for thirty-eight years placed an indelible stamp on Kilbreda College. During her term, the name Kilbreda was officially adopted. It comes from the Gaelic Kil or Cill – church or community and Breda – Brigid. This beautiful name, Community of St Brigid, is complemented by the Brigidine motto, adopted from Bishop Daniel Delany: Strength and Kindliness.

Landmark Buildings


Kilbreda’s iconic landmark building commenced life as the Mentone Coffee Palace. It was built in the land boom years of the 1880s, but by the early 1900s, it had closed and fallen in to disrepair. In 1904, James McGuffie secured the property on behalf of the Brigidine sisters. This extraordinary purchase enabled the establishment of a new Brigidine community and school. Today we enjoy the beautiful gardens and a mix of historic buildings and modern facilities, as we continue the tradition of offering a unique and quality education for young women of the 21st century.