St. Elizabeth Ann Seton

St. Elizabeth Ann Seton was born Elizabeth Bayley in New York in 1774, the child of Dr. Richard Bayley — — the very first teacher of anatomy at Columbia College — — and Catherine Charlton, child of an Anglican minister. When Elizabeth was just 3 years old, Elizabeth’s mom passed away. Her dad remarried and Elizabeth got along effectively with her stepmother and sis and stepbrothers. The household was all of the Anglican faith and Elizabeth was really spiritual. She constantly used a crucifix around her neck and liked to check out the Scriptures.

Elizabeth wed William Seton in 1794 and struck up a terrific relationship with her sister-in-law, Rebecca Seton. Together, they tackled on objectives of grace and ended up being called the “Protestant Sisters of Charity.” Elizabeth was really delighted, her household was rich and popular and she was doing the Lord’s work. Things could not have actually been much better. In 1798, her father-in-law passed away and Elizabeth and her hubby discovered themselves the caretakers of the big orphaned household. Right after, her other half’s health likewise began to stop working and they went to Pisa, Italy, in hopes of discovering medical assistance for him. He passed away there, and Elizabeth was widowed with 5 kids.

She stayed in Pisa for a while after his death, dealing with a Catholic household. While living and going to Mass with them, she quickly fell for the Catholic faith and pertained to recognize that was where she belonged. She went back to the United States in 1805 and was gotten into the Church by Fr. Matthew O’Brien at St. Peter’s Church in New York. This occasion caused her ostracization by her Protestant friends and family. When she and a Catholic couple attempted to open a school for young boys in the residential areas of New York, some began the report that they were attempting to transform the kids to Catholicism and the school was required to close.

In 1806, Elizabeth’s youngest sister-in-law Cecilia Seton ended up being extremely ill and demanded seeing her ostracized member of the family. Elizabeth was summoned and ended up being a consistent visitor. Cecilia informed her that she, too, wanted to end up being a Catholic. When Cecilia’s choice was made recognized, risks were made to have actually Elizabeth expelled from the state by the legislature. When Cecilia recuperated from her health problem she left to Elizabeth for sanctuary and was gotten into the Church.

Three years later on, Elizabeth was asked to open a school in Baltimore by Fr. Dubois, rector of St. Mary’s Seminary there. Together with 4 others, Elizabeth established a spiritual neighborhood called the Sisters of Saint Joseph and a school for bad kids. The brand-new neighborhood was authorized by Archbishop Carroll of Baltimore, and in 1812, Elizabeth was chosen remarkable. With 18 other females, she took her promises in 1813, establishing the Sisters of Charity, the very first American spiritual society. By the time of Elizabeth’s death in 1821, there were some 20 neighborhoods.

She was canonized by Pope Paul VI in 1975, the very first American-born saint.


Elizabeth withstood excellent persecution when she transformed to the Catholic Church, consisting of loss of interaction with relative and good friends. Even throughout her time as Mother Superior of the Sisters of Charity, her suffering continued. There were excellent trials consisting of the loss of her own kids. Her child Anna passed away throughout her novitiate, however was permitted to pronounce her pledges on her deathbed. Another child, Rebecca, likewise passed away after suffering through a long disease. Elizabeth never ever swayed in her faith and her passion to assist others, and since of her effort and determination, lots of people were assisted and numerous souls gave the Lord.

From Johnnette Benkovic’s Graceful Living: Meditations to Help You Grow Closer to God Day by Day

 Graceful living Click the image above to buy your own copy of Graceful Living.

Live just, so that all might merely live.

—– Traditionally credited to St. Elizabeth Ann Seton.

Today, I will do an evaluation of conscience according to this mentor and ask myself these concerns: What 2 virtues are implicit in this quote? To what level has a consumerist mindset avoided me from living these virtues? What favorable actions can I take, starting today, to treat this scenario?


Father, we are so pleased that you called Elizabeth to the Catholic faith and for all she achieved for others in her life time. We thank you for her excellent spirit and example and hope that you will raise up numerous others like Elizabeth in our nation to be fantastic saints that we might replicate. Amen.

image: Nheyob , CC BY-SA 3.0 , through Wikimedia Commons

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