Who We Are

A community of Catholic religious sisters from Australia and Papua New Guinea inspired by the gospel of Jesus Christ and their foundress Catherine McAuley’

The Sisters of Mercy have been at Santa Casa since they first purchased the land in 1901 and opened a boarding school for girls.

Since then, the ministries at Santa Casa have adapted and evolved in response to the needs of the time. It has been a holiday home for disadvantaged children, a rehabilitation hospital during the Polio epidemic, a holiday house for the sisters and a centre for formation for novices from different congregations across Australia.

Today, Santa Casa’s primary ministry is being a retreat and spirituality centre that provides a place for prayer, reflection and renewal of body and spirit.

Santa Casa is less than 100km from Melbourne and is situated on the unique and stunning cliffs of Victory Bight on the Bellarine Peninsula. A short 50m walk from the back gate leads down to the normally quiet and beautiful Santa Casa beach. This attractive coastal location is on 2 acres and the spacious grounds make it an ideal place for participants who desire to be close to nature. Santa Casa adjoins a pristine swimming beach

Other Attractions include:

  • approximately 30-minutes drive from Avalon airport
  • less than two-hours drive from Melbourne
  • approximately 200 metres from Swan Bay and the Marine and Freshwater Discovery Centre
  • a 10-minute walk to Queenscliff town centre and churches
  • bus service to and from Geelong every hour
  • a 15-minute walk to the Queenscliff-Sorrento Ferry service
  • an easy drive to Point Lonsdale, Ocean Grove, Barwon Heads and then further on to the Great Ocean Road
  • several wineries and golf-courses within a 30-minute drive
  • home of the historic Bellarine Railway