our history

L’Arche International

L’Arche began as a response to the loneliness of people with intellectual disabilities living in institutions.

The first L’Arche home opened in 1964, when a group of people with and without disabilities began sharing life together in a small cottage in the French village of Trosly-Breuil.  The residents shared daily tasks of cooking and cleaning, and had regular times of relaxation and prayer together. They named their house “L’Arche,” after Noah’s ark.


Word quickly spread about this creative experiment in communal living.

Young people from around the world came to join the Trosly-Breuil community, drawn by the opportunity to share life with people who had a disability.  As the community grew and more homes were opened, the vision of L’Arche emerged: the recognition that each of us, regardless of ability or disability, has gifts that can enrich others’ lives; that each of us yearns to be accepted and celebrated by others for who we are; and that human flourishing is constituted, in large part, by having meaningful relationships with others. 

By the seventies, L’Arche became a fast-growing global movement.

L’Arche began in Canada in 1969 and in India in 1970, and as communities continued to emerge in other countries L’Arche became increasingly ecumenical, interfaith, and multicultural.  Today, there are 154 L’Arche communities in 38 countries around the world.


Circle Drive Alliance Church
3035 Preston Ave. South


L’Arche Saskatoon
P.O. Box 23006
Saskatoon, SK
S7J 5H3