History & Mission


Historically, the Sisters of Mercy, in the spirit of their foundress, Catherine McAuley, have endeavored to serve those in need and to be responsive to unmet needs in society.  In 1988, a formal decision was made by the governing body of the Sisters of Mercy of North Carolina to seek a way to become involved in ministering to people living with AIDS. 


As the Sisters conducted a study to determine how best to use their limited resources to respond to the epidemic, it became clear that housing was the greatest need in the area; at that time, there were no housing options for persons living with HIV/AIDS.

After much planning, many obstacles, and three years, the happy day arrived when the House of Mercy was able to open its doors and welcome the first residents. House of Mercy officially opened on May 18, 1991.

Today, House of Mercy remains a family care home licensed by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services. The facility is able to serve up to six residents at a time in an intentionally home-like setting. 

House of Mercy remains a sponsored ministry of the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas, located in the Sisters of Mercy South Central Community


The Sisters of Mercy of the Americas South Central Community, ever mindful of our name, MERCY, endeavor to respond to the needs of society in light of the concerns of our foundress Catherine McAuley.  We strive to give individual and corporate witness to the compassion and love of God to Persons Living with HIV/AIDS while embracing the value of sacredness of life, justice, human dignity, service, and integrity.

Through our ministry of the HOUSE OF MERCY, Inc., we:


1.  give visible witness to God's merciful love, reverence, acceptance, and dignity to all Persons Living with HIV/AIDS;


2.  witness to a community of healing and reconciliation which enables Persons Living with HIV/AIDS to move from a sense of alienation to one of unity, from a sense of being judged to one of unconditional love and acceptance;


3.  respond to the physical, spiritual, social, emotional, and psychological needs of Persons Living with HIV/AIDS;


4.  acknowledge and foster respect for individual differences, ensuring that the people served are treated with justice, dignity, and compassion;


5.  create, through education, a more compassionate, just, and understanding society in relation to Persons Living with HIV/AIDS.


6.  collaborate with HIV/AIDS service agencies and other human service organizations in order to better meet the needs of Persons Living with HIV/AIDS.

Did you know House of Mercy in Belmont was named after the original House of Mercy in Dublin, Ireland?


Founded by Sister of Mercy and foundress Catherine McAuley, the original House of Mercy opened in 1827 to serve the poor, particularly women and their children. Today it is known as Mercy International Centre.

Click here to enjoy a video tour.


Catherine McAuley, 
Foundress of the

Sisters of Mercy.

Sister Mary Wright, 

the first President

of House of Mercy