As early as 1983 some people were expressing a desire to be connected in a deeper way with the Sisters Faithful Companions of Jesus, and were invited by different groups of FCJ sisters to form Associations. The 1983 General Chapter affirmed these initiatives and encouraged consultation at provincial and regional levels about their further development. 

In its turn, the 1988 General Chapter recognised not only the potential of the FCJ Associations for the spiritual development of the laity but also the richness that such association can bring to the sisters.

Two different forms of FCJ Association developed, one characterised by prayer, mutual exchange and friendship; the other essentially a Program for those who, supported by our spirituality, wished to live faithful companionship with Jesus within their own vocation in life. 

Sr. Paola Terroni fcJ.The 1988 Chapter affirmed these two forms of FCJ Association and encouraged yet further development at provincial and local level. It also recommended that there begin to be some international coordination.

In her report to the General Chapter of 1998, Sr Paula Terroni, reflecting on the gradual development of the different types of association, wrote:

"This is not the first time we have considered the question of possible ways in which people who are not called to the vowed life, but who want to live Faithful Companionship with Jesus, can be affiliated with the Society.  We value our charism greatly and we want to share it as widely as possible…   The spirituality of the Society is certainly very relevant for today.  How can we, who are entrusted with the charism of Faithful Companionship with Jesus, find other ways in which it can be lived authentically?

As a result of reflection and prayer, the 1998 General Chapter decreed the establishment of the Companions in Mission, as “a public expression of relationship with the Society of the Sisters, Faithful Companions of Jesus, and a form of commitment for those who wish to be more closely associated with us in our mission."

Sr. Bonnie Moser fcJIn the following eighteen months there was much discussion and consultation.

A paper, 'A Framework for Discussion on FCJ Affiliation', was presented for discussion at the 1998 Consultative Meeting, (an annual meeting of the general and provincial leadership teams of the FCJ sisters.)  In May 1999 a group of lay people and FCJ sisters were consulted about the further development of this venture. 

At the 1999 Consultative Meeting, it was announced that Sr. Bonnie Moser was to be appointed as international co-ordinator of the “Companions in Mission .” As part of her role, Sr. Bonnie undertook to explore possible resources and to centralize any information on programmes, handbooks, co-members, etc. In subsequent months, there was further consultation of FCJ sisters.

On 2 January 2001, the "FCJ Companions in Mission" was officially launched by Sister Paula Terroni. Groups began immediately and by the time of the General Chapter in October 2003, several Companions in Mission had already made their first commitment.

The 2003 General Chapter affirmed the growth of the Companions in Mission and encouraged its further development. 

In April 2004, Sr. Frances Kennedy was appointed to replace Sr. Bonnie as International Coordinator.

As of February 2005, there are groups of Companions in Australia , Canada , Bolivia, England, Ireland , Italy and the USA. Thirty-seven Companions have committed themselves to a life of deeper companionship with Jesus and a further fifty-five women and men are preparing for commitment.

Recognizing the inspiring contribution that Companions in Mission make to our lives and how the gift of the charism entrusted to Marie Madeleine is enriching for our Church and world, the 2008 General Chapter encouraged further development of Companions in Mission throughout the Society by:

  1. Sr. Paula Mullen fcJ.The naming of a Society-wide Coordinator of Companions in Mission (since 2009, Sr. Paula Mullen)
  2. The collation of the experiences of Companions in Mission grouops to facilitate ongoing planning and direction.
  3. The production of a comprehensive document with information and norms that facilitates ongoing formation and collaboration to be written by FCJs and Companions in Mission. The document will include, for example, criteria for membership, formation, lines of accountability and finances.
  4. The development and sharing of programme resources (e.g. personnel, materials and ideas)
  5. The further formation of, and networking among, all Coordinators.

The Chapter affirmed the need to honour Society-wide norms, while respecting local differences.