Prayer to St. Elizabeth Ann Seton
You blessed Elizabeth Ann Seton with
gifts of grace as wife and mother,
educator and foundress,
so that she might spend her life in
service to Your people.
Through her example and prayers,
may we learn to express our love
for You in love for one another.
We ask this through our Lord
Jesus Christ, Your Son, who lives
and reigns with You and the
Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
About Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton
St. Elizabeth was born in New York City in 1774 and was raised in a devout Episcopalian family. At the age of 19, she married William Magee Seton and they had five children. She and her sister-in-law Rebecca became involved in social work and organized the Protestant Sisters of Charity to work among the poor in the city.
With a failing business and her husband’s poor health due to tuberculosis, Will and Elizabeth sailed to Italy as an effort to save his life. She was inevitably left a widow at the young age of 29, in a strange country and without her children. Because of the strong faith of her new friends in Italy, Elizabeth became attracted to the Catholic faith. Upon her return to America, she joined the Catholic Church which caused her to be rejected by many of her friends and family. She was invited by Bishop John Carroll to move her children to Baltimore and open a school next to St. Mary’s Seminary. It was the first free Catholic school in America. She moved to Emmitsburg and opened a school for poor children.
Despite the loss of her oldest daughter to tuberculosis in 1812, Elizabeth continued to persevere. She established community life with the first of her Sisters of Charity, and in 1813 seventeen more women had made their vows. In 1816, her youngest daughter, Rebecca, died. And with her eyes fixed on the Blessed Sacrament, Elizabeth too died of tuberculosis in 1821. The first miracle credited to her intercession was the cure of a nun with cancer in New Orleans, Louisiana. She was canonized in 1975 by Pope Paul VI.
Feast Day: January 4
Name Meaning: My God is an oath or My God is abundance
Patron Saint of: Death of children, In-law problems, Loss of parents, Opposition of Church authorities, People ridiculed for their piety, Diocese of Shreveport, Louisiana, Widows.
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