As Friends of Mary at the Foot of the Cross, we are called to care for Earth in its pain, to celebrate its beauty, and to create space for its healing. Land is our common heritage, owned by no one, responsibly tended and cared for by each generation. Those responsible for land at any particular time should regard it as a sacred trust, received with gratitude, tended with care for its integrity and long-term sustainability.  

Loretto Land Ethic

The Loretto Community and the Loretto Motherhouse hold stewardship of Earth as a key value. We invite you to learn about our land conservation efforts and our green building work on the grounds.


The Loretto Motherhouse property has been a working farm from the time Fr. Stephen Badin purchased the land in 1794 and named it St. Stephen’s farm. The land became sacred to the Loretto Community when the Friends of Mary at the Foot of the Cross moved to St. Stephen’s farm in 1824. It was from this sacred place that the Loretto journey westward began.


Concerned about the environmental impact of traditional burials, Loretto set aside 6 acres of woods and meadow as a natural burial site for Loretto Community members.


In 2004 and 2005 an earthly-friendly cabin was built at Cedars of Peace. Based on the principle that nature transforms everything, the cabin was built using 18” lengths of cedar logs for the walls, old prayer kneelers as wainscoating, and many other materials that had been overlooked or discarded.