Who Is Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton

The Life of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton

Mother Seton is a woman who was born into a family of aristocrats. “Elizabeth Ann Seton is a saint in my opinion. St. Elizabeth Ann Seton was born in the United States. The aim behind all of us saying this is to commemorate the place and nation from whence she burst forth as the first bloom in the calendar of saints, and to do it with a great sense of gladness. Elizabeth Ann Seton was born and raised in the United States! Rejoice in the accomplishment of your wonderful daughter. You should be proud of her.

After her 19th birthday, Elizabeth tied the knot with billionaire businessman William Magee Seton, with whom she would have a family of five children.

When Elizabeth learned about Catholicism in Italy, where her husband had died, she returned to the United States and became a member of the Catholic Church in New York, where she was confirmed in 1805.

Joseph’s, the first religious order for women to be established in the United States.

  • Joseph’s Academy and Free School, which was instrumental in establishing Catholic education in the United States.
  • Pope Paul VI canonized Mother Seton on Sunday, September 14, 1975, at St.
  • Emmitsburg, Maryland, is home to the Basilica of the National Shrine that bears her name, where her remains are interred.
  • It is designed just for children and teenagers.
  • Student Learning Packets and much more educational resources on Mother Seton may be found by clicking here.

Biography: Elizabeth Ann Seton

Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton was the first American to be canonized as a saint, and she was also the first woman to do so. She was reared as an Episcopalian, but subsequently converted to Catholicism after becoming a mother. Despite the difficulties and tragedies she had in life, she maintained her religious beliefs. The creator of the first Catholic schools in the United States, she is also known as “Mother Teresa,” and is the patron saint of Catholic schools, widows, and mariners. August 28, 1774 was the day of Elizabeth Ann Bayley Seton’s birth in New York City, where she was the daughter of a rich Episcopal family.

  1. Richard Bayley, was a doctor who served as one of the city’s earliest health authorities in the early twentieth century.
  2. Elizabeth Magee Seton married William Magee Seton on January 25, 1794, when she was nineteen years old.
  3. In her Episcopal religion, Seton lived a complete life of loving service to her family, compassion for the less fortunate, and religious development.
  4. When her husband, William, fell ill, the Seton family’s lives took an unexpected turn.
  5. The couple, together with their eldest daughter Anna Maria, decided to travel to Italy in the hopes of improving his health.
  6. On the 19th of December, they were allowed to leave quarantine.
  7. Seton and Anna Maria stayed with the Filicchi brothers, who were business colleagues of her husband’s, while they awaited their return to the United States, which took many months.

She was particularly captivated to the notion of the Eucharist as the true body of Christ, which she found very compelling.

After returning home, she continued to be torn between her Episcopal and Catholic religious beliefs.

She had her confirmation in 1806 and selected the name Mary for her confirmation name.

Elizabeth Ann Seton revered the Virgin Mary and decided to canonize her so that she may continue to help others spiritually.

Seton established a boarding home for young men.

Seton and her family were urged to relocate to Baltimore, Maryland, by a number of different priests.

Catholic women from all across the nation flocked to assist Mary in her work, and together they eventually established a convent.

Joseph’s at Emmitsburg, Maryland, where they lived for the rest of their lives.

Lizzie Seton was elevated to the position of first superior and bestowed with the title “Mother.” After that, she continued in that position for another twelve years.

On July 19, 1813, Seton and eighteen other sisters took the oath of poverty, chastity, obedience, and service to the needy, which they have kept ever since.

A mission to an orphanage in Philadelphia was approved by the community in 1814, marking the beginning of the group’s first mission outside of Emmitsburg.

Anna Maria died in 1812 and Rebecca died in 1816, both while living in Emmitsburg, as a result of TB contracted while living there.

She devoted the latter years of her life to the administration of St.

She passed away on January 4, 1821, when she was 46 years old.

Pope John XXIII pronounced her life holy (also known as beatification) on December 18, 1959, and she was canonized a year later.

She was the first native-born saint of the United States, having been born in New York City.

For Seton, miracles occurred as a result of intercession, or prayers that asked for assistance.

Elizabeth Seton occurred in New Orleans in the 1930s, when Sister Gertrude Korzendorfer made a full recovery from pancreatic cancer after undergoing surgery.

Elizabeth Seton.

Kalin was finally admitted to St.

He had been diagnosed with meningitis of the brain and was in a coma at the time of his death.

Kalin awoke after only a few hours.

Elizabeth Ann Seton was well-known during her lifetime and afterward for her piety, compassion, and willingness to assist others, traits that have endured.

It was during this time that she became a Catholic, where she worked to establish and grow the Sisters of Charity, who prayed to her for healing. Elizabeth Ann Seton is the first American saint, and she is an unique figure.

Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton

Saint The Life and Times of Elizabeth Ann Seton Mother Seton is considered to be one of the founding figures of the American Catholic Church. The Sisters of Charity, the first religious community for women in the United States, was formed by her. She founded the first Catholic parish school in the United States and the first Catholic orphanage in the United States. All of this she accomplished over the course of 46 years, while raising five children. Elizabeth Ann Bayley Seton was born on August 28, 1774, barely two years before the signing of the Declaration of Independence, and is considered a real daughter of the American Revolution.

  • She was raised as a devout Episcopalian, and she learnt the importance of prayer, Scripture, and a nightly examination of conscience from her parents.
  • Richard Bayley, was not a religious person, he was a tremendous humanitarian who instilled in his daughter a desire to love and serve people.
  • She was far from morose and depressed; instead, she approached each new “holocaust,” as she described it, with a positive and happy attitude.
  • Their family grew to include five children before his business collapsed and he succumbed to TB.
  • Elizabeth observed Catholicism in action while in Italy with her dying husband, thanks to the generosity of family friends.
  • When she converted to Catholicism in March 1805, she was met with hostility by many of her family and acquaintances.
  • Her group was created in 1809 on the principles of a religious community, which was followed from the beginning by her group.

She went through a lot, including sickness, misunderstandings, the deaths of loved ones (her husband and two young daughters), and the heartache of a wayward son, among other things.

Emmitsburg, Maryland, is where she is laid to rest.

She was not a mystic or a stigmatic in the traditional sense.

She had two great devotions: complete surrender to God’s will and a burning devotion to the Blessed Sacrament.

The writer Julia Scott expressed her desire to trade the world for “a cave or a desert,” writing to a friend in the process.

Everyone can experience her brand of sanctity if they love God and do what he asks of them. Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton is the patron saint of the following institutions:Catholic Schools Educators/Teachers The Death of One’s Parents Widows

Click here for a meditation on St. Elizabeth Ann Seton.

Home PhilosophyReligion Personages associated with religion Scholars SaintsPopesSaints of the United States Alternative titles include: Elizabeth Ann Bayley is a woman who lives in the United States. It was St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, née Elizabeth Ann Bayley, who became the first native-born American to be canonized by the Roman Catholic Church on August 28, 1774 in New York City and died on January 4, 1821, in Emmitsburg, Maryland, United States (canonized in 1975; feast day January 4). She was the founder of the Sisters of Charity, the first religious community to be established in the United States.

  • Elizabeth Bayley’s daughter, Elizabeth Bayley, was the daughter of a famous physician.
  • Graham and others to establish the first charitable institution in New York City, the Society for the Relief of Poor Widows with Small Children, serving as the organization’s treasurer for seven years during that time period.
  • Seton.
  • Seton became a member of the Roman Catholic Church in New York City in 1805 as a result of her experiences and acquaintances while in Italy.
  • For a brief period of time, she was the principal of a tiny boys’ school.
  • Mary’sCollege in Baltimore.
  • Joseph, the first Catholic sisterhood to be founded in the United States.
  • Because of a revision to the rule of the Sisters of Charity of St.
  • Joseph in 1812, and the name stuck.
  • Mother Seton continued to teach and serve for the community until her death in 1821, by which time the order had grown to include 20 communities across the world.

In September 1975, she was declared a saint. Adam Augustyn was the author of the most recent revision and update to this article.

St. Elizabeth Ann Seton – Saints & Angels

Elizabeth Ann Bayley Seton was the first native-born American to be canonized by the Catholic Church, and she was also the first woman to be canonized by the Catholic Church. Elizabeth grew up in the elite echelon of New York society, having been born two years before the American Revolutionary War. She was a voracious reader, who devoured everything from the Bible to modern literature in her spare time. Although she came from a privileged upbringing, Elizabeth’s childhood was peaceful, uncomplicated, and frequently lonely.

  • Elizabeth married William Seton, a rich young man with whom she had fallen in love and who had proposed to her in 1794.
  • “My own home at twenty—the world—that and heaven too—quite unattainable,” Elizabeth wrote in her journal during the first fall of her life.
  • The young couple was left in charge of William’s seven half-brothers and sisters, as well as the family’s importing company, when William’s father passed away four years later.
  • Both William’s business and his health were in decline.
  • Unfortunately, William died as a result of TB while on his trip to Italy.
  • Elizabeth’s heart was drawn to God and eternity as a result of the numerous forced separations from loved ones caused by death and distance.
  • Following her strong care for the spiritual well-being of her family and friends, Elizabeth finally found her way into the Catholic Church.
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Over the course of many months, Elizabeth got interested in the Catholic faith, with the assistance of her Italian friends, who helped her through her Catholic education.

With her mother having passed away when she was a child, Elizabeth found immense solace in the notion that the Blessed Virgin was genuinely her mother.

A school in Baltimore, Maryland, was established at the recommendation of the president of St.

After word of her conversion to Catholicism spread, several girls were expelled from the school where she had previously taught.

They were instrumental in establishing the first free Catholic school in the United States.

Elizabeth Seton made her vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience on March 25, 1809, and they were only valid for one year after that.

Despite the fact that she was suffering from TB, Mother Seton continued to lead her children in their lives.

It was based on a rule made by St.

By 1818, the sisters had created two orphanages as well as a second school, in addition to their original institution.

It was the 23rd Psalm that Seton prayed most often, and she acquired a great devotion to the Eucharist, Sacred Scripture, and the Virgin Mary throughout her time at Seton.

Only sixteen years after becoming a Catholic, Mother Seton died in 1821 at the age of 46, when she was 46 years old. On March 17, 1963, Pope John XXIII declared her to be a saint, and on September 14, 1975, Pope Paul VI declared her to be a saint.

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Help Now The following is a beautiful prayer in Saint Elizabeth’s honor: Lord God, you gifted Elizabeth Seton with gifts of grace as a wife and mother, educator, and foundress, so that she may dedicate her life in service to your people, as written in the Bible.

We pray in the name of Christ our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit as one God for all time and eternity.

Biography of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton

SETON, Elizabeth Ann, was born on the 28th of August in New York City and died on the 4th of January in Emmittsburg, Maryland. Elizabeth Ann Bayley, one of two daughters of a distinguished Episcopal family, was born on August 28, 1774, in New York City. Her father was a renowned Episcopal minister. She was a sweet young girl, with petite bones and exquisite features, as well as beautiful brown eyes. After losing her mother when she was three years old, she had a strong attachment to her medical father, and she used to sit near her schoolroom window and look out for him on the street.

  • She grew up to be a popular visitor at parties and balls since she was beautiful, lively, fluent in French, a wonderful pianist, and a skilled horsewoman, among other things.
  • It’s no surprise that William Seton fell head over heals in love with her when he was younger.
  • In a magnificent home on Wall Street, with William absorbed in his family’s shipping company and Elizabeth occupied with the beginnings of a family, everything seemed to be going smoothly.
  • Their financial situation began to deteriorate following the death of his father.
  • “Troubles usually require a tremendous deal of mental effort on my part,” she said, “and give my intellect a force that it is otherwise unable to muster.
  • Elizabeth spent Christmas Eve standing guard at the front entrance, hoping to keep the seizure officer out.
  • Her physician father refused to allow her to breastfeed some of the newborns of freshly arrived Irish immigrants because she was in the process of weaning her fourth child.

The outbreak of yellow fever claimed him as well before the end of the summer, leaving Elizabeth distraught.

They decide to travel to Italy in order to visit their friends, the Felicchi family, against Elizabeth’s better judgment.

Even though the cruise was nice, when they arrived in Leghorn, they were confined in a stone tower on a cane outside the city due to a yellow fever outbreak that had broken out in New York at the time.

Afterwards, she sobbed and scolded herself for acting as if God were not in the room with her.

When the cold had chilled them to the point of being unable to move, she and Anna Maria skipped rope.

Only the laundress would be able to assist the young widow in arranging his body.

Interestingly, if this teaching about the Blessed Sacrament had been given at that time, in the Episcopal church in New York, Elizabeth Seton’s tale would have turned out quite differently, as this idea was at the core of her conversion to Catholicism.

The revelation of her involvement with the church caused disquiet among those who heard it.

Her family’s financial situation deteriorated after many attempts to raise funds failed.

When the president of St.

On June 8, 1808, she accepted the offer and departed New York for good.

For formal occasions, women wore black skirts with shoulder capes, a plain white bonnet knotted under the chin (similar to Elizabeth’s mourning attire), and for everyday use, they wore whatever they happened to have on them at the time.

Their diet consisted primarily of vegetables, with the occasional addition of salt pork or buttermilk, as well as a beverage known as carrot coffee, all of which were spiced with the immense zest for survival that had become a habit with Elizabeth.

Eventually, the residence was built, and they were able to enjoy “an attractive little church,” “30 cells,” a “infirmary,” a refectory, “parlor,” “school,” and a “workroom.” Mother Seton approved the norms and constitution of St.

Following that, a complex of buildings was constructed, which included a house for the Sisters, a novitiate, a boarding-school for young girls, a school for impoverished children, and an orphan asylum for orphans.

One more body was sent to New York in 1817, this time in response to a different appeal from the city.

Despite the fact that, according to the constitution of her order, no one could be elected to the office of mother-superior for more than two terms consecutively, an exception was made in her favor due to the unanimous desire of her companions, and she continued to hold the position throughout her life.

She was able to survive on nothing except a small amount of port wine in the end.

Even though she had merely hoped to marry a lovely guy, be a happy wife, and create a beautiful family, the adventurous young woman had had adventures well beyond her wildest expectations.

In the midst of each trial, God revealed new resources, strength, and courage in her that she had not previously recognized. Mother Seton was canonized by Pope Paul VI in 1975, making her the first American-born saint.

Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton

The Sisters of Charity, founded by Elizabeth Ann Bayley Seton, were the first religious community of women to be established in the United States. Born on August 28, 1774, in New York City, she was the daughter of a distinguished Episcopalian family. A physician and professor of medicine, Dr. Richard Bayley was one of the city’s first health officials and was one of the city’s first health commissioners. In 1886, when Elizabeth was just three years old, she lost her mother, Catherine Charlton Bayley, who was the daughter of a Protestant Episcopal preacher.

  • Anna Maria, William, Richard, Catherine, and Rebecca were born between 1795 and 1802, making a total of five children.
  • John Henry Hobart, an assistant at Trinity Church.
  • William Seton’s business and health suffered greatly as a result of the political and economic instability of the time.
  • A journey to Italy was planned by Elizabeth, William, and Anna Maria in the hopes of halting the disease’s progression.
  • Elizabeth and Anna Maria spent several months with the Filicchi brothers of Leghorn (Livorno), who were business acquaintances of her husband’s.
  • For the first time in her life, Elizabeth encountered Roman Catholic religiosity among her social peers.
  • She returned to New York in June 1804, in a storm of religious controversy.

Following the request of numerous priests, Mary and her family relocated to Baltimore in June 1808 in order to establish a school for young women.

The idea of establishing a religious group gradually became a reality.

Joseph’s on July 31, 1809, officially becoming Sisters of Charity of St.

For the following twelve years, Elizabeth Seton served as the first superior, a position she held until her death in 1898.

The Daughters of Charity Rule, which had been adopted from the French Daughters of Charity, was put into effect, and the first group of women to take religious vows was Elizabeth, who did so on July 19, 1813.

By 1817, sisters had been dispatched to New York to function in a similar capacity.

By that point, she had become weakened as a result of the disease’s consequences. She devoted the latter years of her life to the administration of St. Joseph’s Academy and the growth of her community. She passed away on January 4, 1821, when she was just 37 years old.

Elizabeth Bayley Seton Chronology

William Magee Seton, a member of a rich commercial family, became her husband in 1794. 1795-1802 – Became the mother of five children, named Anna Maria, William, Richard, Catherine, and Rebecca, all of whom survived to adulthood. Organized and actively participated in the Society for the Relief of Widows and Children with Small Children in 1797, which was the first benevolent organization in the United States to be founded and operated entirely by women. Following the death of her husband’s father-in-law, she assumed responsibility for seven of her husband’s younger siblings.

  1. 1803 – She traveled to Italy with her husband and oldest daughter, when her husband died.
  2. 1805 – Made her public declaration of faith as a Catholic; as a result of her widowhood and conversion to Catholicism, she experienced rejection and financial hardship.
  3. 1809 – Elizabeth and her companions relocated to Emmitsburg, Maryland, where they established the American Sisters of Charity, with Elizabeth serving as Mother.
  4. Joseph’s Academy, a free school, and an orphan home were all established during the year 1812-1813, following the approval of a Rule by Archbishop John Carroll.
  5. 1814 – Missioned three Sisters of Charity to administer an orphan home in Philadelphia; in 1817, Sisters of Charity were dispatched to New York to carry out a similar mission.
  6. Joseph’s Hospital in Emmitsburg.
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Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton, Maryland Women’s Hall of Fame

Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton, sometimes known as “Mother Seton,” holds a particular place in the hearts of all Americans because of her historical, humanitarian, and spiritual significance. Despite the fact that she was born in the New York City region, she spent the majority of her life in Maryland from 1809 until her death. Elizabeth Ann Seton was widowed when she was 29 years old, and she was left to care for her five children on her own. It had been a difficult time for her late husband’s shipping company, and money had been limited.

  • Despite the disapproval of her friends and family, she decided to convert to the Catholic religion.
  • After outgrowing its initial home on Paca Street in Philadelphia, this school moved to Emmitsburg, Maryland in 1809, where it remained until the education system was established in the United States.
  • The Daughters and Sisters of Charity are descended from this religious order, which originally existed as a religious order.
  • Mother Seton and her religious daughters began establishing schools, orphanages, and hospitals all throughout the world in 1814, and they have continued to do so today.

The National Shrine of Saint Elizabeth Ann Setoncan be found near Emmitsburg, Maryland, and is open to the public. The following biography was provided by the Maryland Commission for Women in 1986.

Life of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton

St. Elizabeth Ann SetonHazard yet ForwardSt. Elizabeth Ann Seton (1774-1821) was bornElizabeth Ann Bayley on August 28, 1774, in New York andwas raised Episcopalian. She was the daughter of RichardBayley, a respected physician in the city, andCatherine, the daughter of an Episcopal rector. In 1777,Catherine died while giving birth, leaving St. ElizabethAnn and her older sister, Mary, motherless. RichardBayley remarried in 1778 and that new marriage changedSt. Elizabeth Ann’s status in the family and herrelationship with her father. As a highly respectedphysician, Dr. Bayley frequently traveled for longperiods of time. Her young stepmother, Charlotte, whilecaring for Mary and St. Elizabeth Ann, obviously lovedher own children more. Dr. Bayley, as a way to honor hisnew wife, focused his attention on his new children.Despite St. Elizabeth Ann being anxious for her father’sattention, at age eight, St. Elizabeth Ann and hersister, Mary, were sent to live with relatives in thecountry (Long Island, New York).St.Elizabeth Ann benefited from her time in the country.She developed a keen love of nature and a sense of God’spresence. Often lonely, she turned to God forcompanionship, and it was during this period of time shebegan her life-long devotion to reading the Bible.Although she had a quiet, reflective side, St. ElizabethAnn was also lively and vivacious. As she grew older,she loved to dance, sing, play piano and go to thetheatre. In 1787, St. Elizabeth Ann and Mary returned tothe city and their father’s house. St. Elizabeth Annoften took care of her stepbrothers and sisters (theoldest was seven). She sang and read to them anddiscovered the joy in helping.Just as it seemed that life was becoming normal, the NewYork “Doctors’ Riots” broke out. The Doctors’ Riotsoccurred in April 1788 when it was discovered thatphysicians were using bodies from Potter’s Field toteach surgery to medical students at New York Hospital.Wild exaggerations about body snatchers stealing corpsesfrom family plots lead to a full-scale riot, duringwhich doctors’ homes were ransacked. Dr. Bayley wasamong the physicians who used these bodies, and thoughtheir home escaped intrusion, they were surrounded byangry mobs. This left everyone in the household visiblyshaken. Soon, Dr. Bayley left to England to study newmedical procedures.St. Elizabeth Ann and Mary weresent back to live with relatives in the country. St.Elizabeth Ann missed her father greatly, but Dr. Bayleynever wrote to his wife or to any family member duringhis year away. Although she never lost her loyalty toher father, St. Elizabeth Ann felt abandoned and soughtsolace through her attachment to God.In spite of difficult and lonelytimes, St. Elizabeth Ann embraced life with joy andeagerness. In her late teens, she met William MageeSeton, the oldest son of a wealthy and distinguishedshipping family of New York. They fell in love andmarried (St. Elizabeth Ann at nineteen, Will attwenty-five). The young couple took an active role inthe New York social scene. President and MarthaWashington were residing in New York which created a lotof diversions for the young couple to participate in.Her long years of loneliness and estrangement seemedexorcized by the young couple’s happiness.St. Elizabeth Ann and Will had five children: threedaughters and two boys from 1785 to 1802. In 1798,Will’s father injured himself with a fall on the iceresulting in his death. Will inherited the business andthe responsibility for taking care of his seven youngerbrothers and sisters.Soon, the “family disease,” tuberculosis, took holdof Will. In addition, the shipping business, plagued bypiracy and bad investments, failed rapidly. A disastrousshipwreck in 1800 caused the family business to declarebankruptcy and reduced the Setons to near poverty. St.Elizabeth Ann found friendship with Will’s sisterRebecca, whom she called “my soul’s sister.” Rebecca andSt. Elizabeth Ann prayed, read the scriptures and foundstrength in each other as they shared their faith.Together, they joined other women in New York to helpthe poor immigrants and established the “Society for theRelief of Poor Widows with Children” where St. ElizabethAnn was known as the “Protestant Sister of Charity.”In 1803, Will’s tuberculosis became fatal. In thesummer of 1803, Will turned to God, thus answering St.Elizabeth Ann’s prayers and mitigating her anxiety. Eventhough he would never be cured, Will and St. ElizabethAnn tried one last separate attempt to alleviate histuberculosis – a trip to the milder climate of Italy.Through the shipping business, the Setons formed a closerelationship with the Filicchi family of Livorno(Leghorn) Italy. Will decided to visit them, and St.Elizabeth Ann went with him, even though their youngestwas only a year old. Other than the eight-year-old, Ann,who accompanied her parents to Italy, the children wereplaced with relatives as St. Elizabeth Ann and Will leftfor Italy. The family thought they were crazy, but St.Elizabeth Ann said she was desperate.They sailed from New York in early October 1803.During the seven-week journey, Will seemed to improveand they were quite hopeful. However, a yellow feverepidemic struck New York and because Will was visiblyill, the Italian health authorities quarantined theSetons in a cold stone tower near the entrance of theharbor used for the detention of those with contagiousdiseases. The Filicchis visited them through the gratingand brought warm food to the Setons. The stone buildinggrew cold (Anna warmed herself by jumping rope) and Willbecame steadily more ill. They were finally released onDecember 19, one month after their arrival in Italy.Will died eight days later, having spent his last hourspraying with his wife.The two Filicchi brothers and their families welcomedSt. Elizabeth Ann warmly. They took St. Elizabeth Ann toFlorence, where the churches overwhelmed her and thedevotion of the common people impressed her. She beganattending Mass with the Filicchis and witnessed people’sbelief in the real presence of Jesus in the Eucharist.This began a process of questioning and reordering herown faith. Unexpected delays in sailing home gave St.Elizabeth Ann more time to experience the Catholicfaith. Such rituals as the ringing of the bells in thestreets, which signaled that the Blessed Sacrament wasbeing carried to the sick, stirred her discernment. Bythe time she sailed for New York in April 1804, she hadnew questions about her faith.Arriving home, though joyous, she soon discovered hersister-in-law (and best friend), Rebecca, was also dyingof tuberculosis. St. Elizabeth Ann cared for her “soul’ssister” until her death, and losing Rebecca caused grieffor St. Elizabeth Ann as Rebecca was a strong supportfor her.St. Elizabeth Ann needed financial help at this time,and at first her friends came to her aid. However, asshe expressed interest in becoming Catholic, herEpiscopal minister and many of her friends and relativesturned away from her. They called her deluded anddemanded that she read books which expressed argumentsagainst Catholicism. She understood this opposition toCatholicism, and the class disparity, as most of NewYork’s Catholics were poor Irish immigrants in run-downchurches. The Filicchis supplied St. Elizabeth Ann withbooks about Catholicism and St. Elizabeth Ann read bothviews. Though a period of intense confusion followed,she prayed insistently for God to lead her to the truthand give her courage when she discovered it. Finally,St. Elizabeth Ann became a Catholic on March 14, 1805.Her first communion seemed to sweep away her doubtscompletely.To support herself, she tried to start a boardingschool, but her former Episcopal minister warned hisparishioners against associating with St. Elizabeth Annor supporting her business. These months of trialdeepened St. Elizabeth Ann’s faith, but also deepenedher financial difficulties. When her sister-in-law,Cecilia, became Catholic in June 1806, a new storm ofopposition formed and parents withdrew their childrenfrom St. Elizabeth Ann’s school, her chief means ofsupport.As her financial situation became more tenuous, St.Elizabeth Ann met Fr. William Dubourg of the Society ofSaint Sulpice, who was the founder of St. Mary’s College(now St. Mary’s Seminary) in Baltimore. After attendingSunday Mass at St. Peter’s Church, where Fr. Dubourgpresided, St. Elizabeth Ann knocked on the rectory toseek him out. They talked long and frankly, and at theend of the conversation, Fr. Dubourg asked St. ElizabethAnn about her plans for the future. She described herconcern that her two sons would not receive a propereducation and her hope that she could continue herministry of teaching.Returning to Baltimore, Fr. Dubourg discussed variousalternatives with Archbishop John Carroll (the firstU.S. Bishop). They invited St. Elizabeth Ann to come toBaltimore and open a small Catholic school. BecauseMaryland was relatively free of anti-Catholic hostility,she opted for this opportunity. Her sons went ahead tobegin their education at Georgetown University, thanksto the generosity of the Filicchis and ArchbishopCarroll. Through the vision of Archbishop Carroll, St.Elizabeth Ann established a Catholic school which wasopen to all (free) and focused on the poor andimpoverished. This began the Parochial Catholic Schoolsystem in the United States. At the time, public schoolscharged tuition and were only available to the elite ofthe society.In a letter to Antonio Filicchi, St. Elizabeth Annmentioned the possibility of forming a community ofwomen religious. St. Elizabeth Ann did not push thisplan, but waited for God’s divine providence to leadher. Soon, Cecilia O’Conway (“Philadelphia’s firstnun”), joined her in her work in December 1808. SamuelS. Cooper, a wealthy seminarian, gave $10,000 to helpSt. Elizabeth Ann establish a religious community,provided that the Mother House would be in Emmitsburg,Maryland. Archbishop Carroll appointed St. Elizabeth Annto be superior of the new community and she received herfirst vows on March 25, 1809. St. Elizabeth Ann was thencalled “Mother Seton.”Other young women joined St. Elizabeth Ann and on June2, 1809, the sisters came to Mass imitating St.Elizabeth Ann’s style of dress, the dress of a widow – ablack dress with a leather belt from which hung arosary, a short cape and a white muslin cap. Some dayslater, St. Elizabeth Ann’s sister-in-laws, Harriet andCecilia Seton, joined the community.The Sulpician Fathers were appointed by ArchbishopCarroll to be the ecclesiastical superiors of theEmmitsburg sisters. Since they had close ties with St.Vincent de Paul and the Daughters of Charity, they urgedthe sisters to model themselves after the FrenchDaughters of Charity. It was hoped to bring theDaughters of Charity from France to unite the twocommunities and for the French sisters to instruct theAmerican sisters in religious life. However, due to theturmoil in France from Napoleon’s adventures, theDaughters could not leave France. The Rule andconstitutions did make their way to America and wereadapted by St. Elizabeth Ann and her community.Archbishop Carroll approved the permanent rules of theEmmitsburg Sisters of Charity on September 11, 1811.Life for the religious community was difficult. Thesisters had little income and their housing was sparse.The cold winters took their tool, but the work prosperedwith St. Elizabeth Ann at the helm.The community rose at 5:00A.M., said Morning Prayer,meditated, attended Mass and then had breakfast. At9:00A.M., the community prayed an act of adoration. Theyworked until 11:45A.M. and made an examination ofconscience and read the Scriptures. A brief recreationperiod followed lunch. At 2:00P.M., the sisters gatheredto hear the Imitation of Christ, to read and to pray.They worked again until 5:00P.M., at which time theyrecited the rosary. During supper, they listened tospiritual readings. The community recreated until8:30P.M., said night prayer and went to bed. Besideteaching and other ministerial duties, the sisterscleaned, sewed, tended their own garden and did theirown laundry. Their lives were balanced between work,prayer and recreation. Like most women of their time,they lived hard lives. Yet, the community grew.Tuberculosis ravaged the community. Anna, St. ElizabethAnn’s oldest daughter, contracted the disease. Annaspent some time living in Baltimore, but she foundherself lonely and unhappy while away from thecommunity. She entered the community formally, but onlylived a short while as a sister, dying a few monthsbefore her seventeenth birthday. Rebecca, St. ElizabethAnn’s youngest child, fell on the ice and badly injuredher hip. Not wanting to cause trouble, she did not tellher mother and tried to walk as straight as possible.This aggravated the injury and permanent damageresulted. Tuberculosis settled in the injured joint, andRebecca died in her mother’s arms in 1816, when she wasonly fourteen years old.St. Elizabeth Ann, too, was losing her own battle withtuberculosis. The trials of separation from herchildren, conflict and death had worn on her. The summerof 1820 marked the beginning of St. Elizabeth Ann’s lastillness. She began to feel weaker. She tried to followthe exercises and rules of the community, but hercondition grew worse. As the new year of 1821 began, St.Elizabeth Ann was urged to take her medicine, but sherefused, saying “Never mind the drink. One Communionmore – and then eternity.” Early on the morning ofJanuary 4, 1821, St. Elizabeth Ann Seton diedpeacefully. St. Elizabeth Ann Seton is the first UnitedStates native to be canonized by the Catholic Church.Her motto was “Hazard yet forward” which is anindication of her deep conviction that Christ indeed isour Savior and everything we do ought to be done forhim. Our “hazard” is being bold in proclaiming the GoodNews of Salvation, in proposing to live this Good Newsso that our lives are truly different and all people maysee the face of Christ in our own. We celebrate St.Elizabeth Ann Seton’s feast day on January 4.Resources on St.Elizabeth Ann SetonAlderman, Margaret, and JosephineBurns.Companions for the Journey: Praying withElizabeth Seton. Winona, MN: Saint Mary Press,1992.Craughwell, Thomas J.Saints for Every Occasion:101 of Heaven’s Most Powerful Patrons.Charlotte,NC:C.D. Stampley Enterprises, Inc., 2001.Delaney, John J.Dictionary of Saints.Garden City, NY:DoubledayCompany, Inc., 1980.Kelly, Ellin and Annabelle Melville,eds. Elizabeth Seton: Selected Writings. New York:Paulist Press, 1987.McBrien, Richard P.Lives of the Saints:from Mary and St. Francis of Assisi to John XXIII andMother Teresa.San Francisco, CA:HarperSanFrancisco (Division of HarperCollinsPublishers), 2001.Walsh, Michael, ed.Butler’s Lives of the Saints.Concise Edition.New York, NY:HarperRowPublishers, 1985.
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Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton

The Diocese of Arlington is patronized by Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton, who is its secondary patron. She is also the patroness of Catholic educational institutions. Her feast day is on the 4th of January.


  • A famous Anglican family in New York, Elizabeth Bayley was born in 1774
  • The Seton family fortune had crumbled in 1803 and her husband William had had TB at the time of her birth. Elizabeth, William, and their eldest daughter, Anna Maria, on a trip to Italy, which had a more pleasant temperature. Elizabeth became a widow at the age of 29 when William died in Pisa, Italy, despite their best attempts. She had five little children, all under the age of eight, when William died. In the meanwhile, while Elizabeth and Anna awaited their return home to the United States, the Filicchi family gave them with hospitality and led Elizabeth to Catholicism
  • 1805 – Elizabeth’s love to Our Lady and her thirst for Christ in the Eucharist grew even more intense. Elizabeth got her First Holy Communion when she was thirty years old
  • In 1808, she traveled to Baltimore, Maryland, to assist the Sulpician priests in the establishment of a school for the religious instruction of children. In exchange for her chastity and obedience, Elizabeth received the title “Mother Seton.” Elizabeth died at Emmitsburg in 1821
  • Elizabeth was canonized by Pope Paul VI in 1975, and her remains are interred in the Basilica dedicated to her in Emmitsburg, Maryland.

Interesting Facts

  • As the first person born in the United States to be canonized as a saint, she made history. More information on St. Elizabeth Ann Seton may be found here, as well as an opportunity to pray her intercessory prayer.


The text for the biographical information about the saints was collected from the website of the St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church in Los Angeles.

Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton

Also referred to as Profile Elizabeth Bayley was born into a wealthy and important Episcopalian family, the daughter of a Dr. Richard Bayley, and nurtured in the upper crust of New York society during the late 18th century. Elizabeth’s mother died when she was three years old, and her younger sister died a year later. She married the rich businessman William Magee Seton in 1794 when she was 19 years old, and she was the mother of five children. Approximately 10 years after their marriage, William’s company collapsed, and he died of TB shortly thereafter, leaving Elizabeth an impoverishedwidow with five tiny children.

It was on March 14, 1805, that she made the decision to convert to Catholicism, upsetting many members of her strict Episcopalian family in the process.

Despite the fact that it was a private and secular organization, she managed it in the manner of a religious community from the outset.

For the purpose of running the institution, she formed the Sisters of Charity in 1809, who were the first native American religious community for females.

  • On August 28, 1774, in New York City, New York, the United States of America asElizabeth Ann Bayley, a pseudonym
  • Natural causes caused the death of Emmitsburg, Maryland, on January 4, 1821.
  • We are fighting against in-law issues, against the killing of children, and against the death of parents. People mocked for their religious beliefs
  • The Apostleship of the Sea (two of her sons worked on the sea)
  • The Diocese of Shreveport,Louisiana
  • Widows
  • And the hostility of Church officials.

Information Supplementary to the above

  • Father F G Holweck’s American Martyrology is a must-read. Mother Elizabeth Seton’s biographical sketch
  • The Book of Saints by Thomas Merton Pope Benedict XVI
  • Father Lawrence George Lovasik (S.V.D. )
  • Catholic Encyclopedia Great Wives and Mothers, by Father Hugh Francis Blunt
  • Great Wives and Mothers, by Father Hugh Francis Blunt Saint Vincent de Paul’s Hymn is sung. Sister Mary Agnes McCann’s portrait of Mother Seton, the Founder of the Sisters of Charity
  • Father Robert Seton, D.D.’s biography of Mrs Seton
  • The centennial celebration of Mother Seton
  • The New Catholic Dictionary
  • And more. A poem by Katherine Rabenstein, entitled Saints of the Day
  • Father John Clement Reville, S.J., Ph.D., wrote a biography of Elizabeth Bayley Seton, the first American Sister of Charity. It was the Church’s holiness that was celebrated in the nineteenth century. Louise Malloy’s The Life Story of Mother Seton is one of her publications.
  • The Catholic Cookbook
  • Catholic Culture
  • Catholic Exchange
  • Catholic Fire
  • Catholic Ireland
  • Catholic News Agency
  • Catholic Online
  • Communio
  • Cradio
  • The Domestic Church, written by Catherine Fournier
  • The Catholic Cookbook Locate a Grave
  • Saints for Sinners
  • Saints Stories for All Ages
  • Vatican News
  • Wikipedia
  • National Shrine of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton
  • National Women’s Hall of Fame
  • Regina Magazine
  • Prayer to Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton
  • Catholic Bytes
  • Divine Office
  • BreadCast:Prayer to Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton
  • Father Robert Seton’s memoirs, letters, and journal of Elizabeth Seton, a conversion to the Catholic religion and Sister of Charity, are available online.

Readings It is necessary for us to pray without ceasing in every situation and activity of our life – that prayer that is more a habit of raising the heart to God as if we were in continual conversation with Him. –St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, a.k.a. The first goal I suggest for our daily labor is to carry out God’s will; the second goal is to carry out God’s will in the manner in which he wills; and the third goal is to carry out God’s will since it is his will. –St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, a.k.a. What was the first rule of our beloved Savior’s life, and what was the second?

So, the first goal of our daily labor is to carry out God’s will; the second goal is to carry out God’s will in the manner in which he desires; and the third goal is to carry out God’s will simply because it is his will.

We are aware that he provides us with every grace, every bountiful grace, and that, despite the fact that we are so weak in ourselves, this grace is capable of carrying us over every obstacle and hardship that comes our way.

— adapted from the works of Citation for Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton in the MLA

  • “St. Elizabeth Ann Seton” is a saint. CatholicSaints.Info will be online on September 18, 2021. 4th of January, 2022
  • Web.

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