Fraternite Notre Dame Detroit

Fraternite Notre Dame is a Catholic Religious Missionary Order which is not tied with a diocese. Fraternite Notre Dame also performs humanitarian activities in several countries. Fraternite Notre Dame's Mission is to help anyone in need, with no distinction of race, class, gender or creed; to be attentive to the cries of the poor, and be attentive to those who suffer in their heart or in their body.

Detroit, Michigan; this is another blessed United States City which opens its gates to Fraternite Notre Dame! Christ’s Charity urged Fraternite Notre Dame to open a new Mission in that location! The Religious of Fraternite Notre Dame cannot believe their eyes! They tell themselves, assuredly, nothing can stop their Founder! But why Detroit? Certainly, that city counts a host of poor people, whose cries have come up towards Heaven... to save a beautiful church, which was dying...

Here are some useful facts. After the glorious and flourishing years of the automobile industry in Detroit, a severe downfall had ensued. Part of the City sank into an economic depression with high unemployment and insecurity. More than half of the population left. Detroit, at an earlier time was prosperous, but today, certain areas are immense waste lands spangled with abandoned houses and destroyed or burned down buildings. Vacant land is plenty, there are trees growing in homes and others with windows boarded-up. The remainder of the population lives in insecurity, fear and distress. When you cross the northern part of Detroit, it feels more like a prairie, with scattered old houses here and there; one is abandoned, while another is just barely alive. Poverty is definitely palpable here.

Under such conditions, Fraternite Notre Dame had an opportunity to purchase a church, with large adjacent buildings, namely, the rectory, a convent and a large school. What an unhoped-for opportunity!

Serving the population which experiences misery, we offer material support and restore hope. Fraternite Notre Dame is able to establish an ideal help center for this community. Besides, the church wears the beautiful name of “Holy Name of Jesus.” The premises once sheltered several Religious Orders, including the Dominican Sisters. They had a very large school built, and many people who are in their fifties and sixties call it their Alma Mater, and treasure great memories of it. Some of them actually prayed so the church could be taken over by Religious people, as they watched it falling into severe disrepair.

But one day, this past July, all of a sudden, they saw little Sisters and some Priests wearing their habit, appearing out of nowhere, and keeping quite busy, as the Servants and Handmaids of Our Lady ever are! A wind of renewal was blowing to revive the area. A breeze of charity... First, the Religious made sure to clear the parking lot and building surroundings from all weeds and unwanted bushes, for it was turning into a jungle. When that was finished, the real work started. Nothing can stop Fraternite Notre Dame, that’s the least we can say, when we see how bad this location was.

But its gaze has already penetrated the future, and it can see the magnificent promises that have already germinated for this place. What an example of courage! The assessment of what it is like, however, proved just disastrous. In some spots, you may wonder if a tornado has hit, uprooting all things in its path. In fact, robbers are responsible for breaking things up, destroying and

Actually, in Detroit, abandoned buildings often fall prey to robbers who devastate and burn the houses in order to steal anything copper, and then sell it for scrap metal. Thus, before our religious arrived there, all the copper gutters, all the heating system pipes, all radiators and all bath fixtures were stolen. The place was virtually devastated. They scrapped all copper pipes, that is, the whole plumbing and heating system. They climbed on the roofs and pulled all the gutters out. As a result of such vandalism: the heating system was gone, the radiators where stolen, ceilings were severely damaged, roof tiles broken, and the lack of gutters obviously caused huge flooding inside the church and the other buildings. How terrible it is to see these ruined roofs and you can easily figure out that the water naturally finds its way inside the premises.

The Sanctuary though, is magnificent and very large. The church’s vault is immense. The whole structure stands out as being really impressive. Now, currently, the holy site is strewn with debris and piles of removed lumber, for the entire indoor works need to be redone. But the roof comes first on the list, followed by the plumbing and heating. They have taken it all out. The drop ceilings where slashed, and the sinks, thrown onto the floor. The aggressors had no pity for the walls or the roof tiles, as they broke them indiscriminately, in a sort of evildoer’s frenzy.

Repairing as soon as possible has become a priority, but we have to find funds and pray a great deal so that Providence would send us benefactors.

In the first few days, Fraternite Notre Dame already started the food pantry Service for needy families. Residents from the neighborhood came right away, and were very welcoming, kind and happy! And the miracle happened!

A barbecue is organized each year by the former students of the school, but this year is like no other, given the fact these Religious have arrived, fulfilling many a person’s dream!

A young woman visited the church with her baby and mother. The grandmother is a bit concerned, for the child has not been baptized yet, but she and her daughter feel helpless about it. The daughter took a picture with her smart phone of the church’s rose window, which is over the choir loft. The day was overcast, and the window was very dark. However, the photo revealed another horizon, and when she saw the photo, the young woman uttered a cry. Indeed, above the rose window on her picture, the upper part of the church has disappeared, revealing a blue sky with some magnificent clouds. The walls are not there any longer. There is a luminous cloud, just as when God the Father had said: “This is My beloved Son, hear ye Him!” Everyone has commented on this picture, which was then circulated on many smart phones.

On that same afternoon, in the parking lot of a store, not far from our church, another miracle occurred for the Superiors of Fraternite Notre Dame. The sun, like in Fatima, Portugal, started dancing, moving in circles, and then, imitated a heartbeat, and finally, it would come closer to the earth and then recede, to resume its dance. This is very encouraging and stimulating. The Good God is showing us that we are in a place that was carefully selected.

The Religious Nuns, Friars and Priests of Fraternite Notre Dame run a food pantry service on Tuesdays, and numerous less-fortunate families come faithfully. For Thanksgiving, the poor received a nice turkey per family, along with their food box; they could not believe their eyes! A needy lady was crying with gratefulness, as she left with her turkey; she was just unable to contain her emotions.

The poor are truly grateful and they thank God for having sent us to this less-fortunate neighborhood. The Religious Nuns, Friars and Priests of Fraternite Notre Dame celebrated Christmas and offered presents to the less-favored children from the area.

And even though the works have barely started, and the task is gigantic, the Mission has started, the poor are already comforted, and the Holy Names of Jesus and of Mary, Mother of Mercy and Mother of the Church, are already exalted!

Help us to repair our Church and our Convent.

Your donation will be truly welcome!

May God bless your generosity and reward you in His own way, which will be the best.

Fraternite Notre Dame
Church of the Holy Name of Jesus and
Mary, Mother of Mercy and Mother of the Church
13640 Van Dyke Avenue
Detroit, Michigan 48234
  • Maria Pini 
    • $50 
    • 36 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $20 
    • 36 mos
  • Gail Aglynas 
    • $25 
    • 36 mos
  • Richard Egan 
    • $100 
    • 37 mos
  • Mary C Sherman 
    • $100 
    • 37 mos
See all


Shane Crosby 
Detroit, MI
Fraternite Notre Dame, Inc. 
Registered nonprofit
Donations are typically 100% tax deductible in the US.