"In spite of the zeal of the Missionaries, their efforts will not produce sufficient fruit if they are not seconded by women apostles working with the women.
Men cannot give this service themselves, only women have free access to pagan women and are able to maintain charitable relations with them; help them in their trouble and so touch their hearts. This apostolate does not stop with the women, for a woman is a fountainhead because she is mother."
Cardinal Lavigerie underlined the importance of woman's place in the world and in the Church. He saw her as an agent in the transformation of society through her role as "head" of the family, parallel to that of man. Hers is a ministry of love and of humanity.
"Women are destined to be the most effective missionaries of the African peoples" 1871