Born in France, Marguerite founded a community of religious women or 'sisters', the Congregation of Notre Dame (C.N.D.).
In the 17 th century, she opened the first school in New France in a stable and taught children of European and Aboriginal backgrounds. She also educated the 'Filles du Roi' (Daughters of the King), young single women sent from France to marry the French settlers, and was known as 'Mother of the Colony' in Ville-Marie (later Montreal). Marguerite Bourgeoys (1620-1700) was canonized in 1982.