Sister Luise Ahrens

Sister Luise Ahrens, M.M.

Current Ministry Location-Maryknoll Sisters Center

Sister Luise, from Detroit, Michigan, earned her B.A. in English in 1960 from Manhattanville College and then entered the Maryknoll Sisters Congregation the same year. She taught at Mary Rogers College and in 1966 earned her M.A. in English from Fordham University. She then went to Maryknoll High School in Maui, Hawaii, where she taught for three years. She returned to New York and earned her PhD in English Literature in 1973 and then was assigned to Indonesia, where she was a professor in a MA program at Provincial University of Java.

In 1983, Sister Luise was asked to complete the term of a Maryknoll Sisters Central Governing Board member who died in a plane crash in Chile. Sister Luise was elected President of the Maryknoll Sisters Congregation in 1984, and served for six years. In 1985, she received the Fordham University Distinguished Alumni Award.

In 1991, she was assigned to Cambodia to help re-establish the Royal University of Phnom Penh, which was hit particularly hard during the reign of terror of the Khmer Rouge. Only two educators and thirty-six students were still alive and able to return to help re-establish the university. Sister Luise continued in the English Language program and in the university library she collaborated in planning in the national higher education system until she left in 2017 for New York.

Presently, Sister Luise resides at Maryknoll Sisters Center in New York to serve in the Personnel Department’s Education Office.