Essay Example on Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton was an outstanding American








Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton was not only an outstanding American but was also the very first native-born American person that the Catholic Church canonized She was strong as she suffered from the deaths of many dear to her The first all-girls Catholic school in the United States was founded by her and she opened many orphanages as well Additionally Elizabeth established the Sisters of Charity a community for religious sisters in America Today six different congregations trace their roots back to her This was all accomplished while Elizabeth was raising five children all by herself On August 28 1774 Elizabeth Ann Bayley was born in New York City NY Her parents were Richard Bayley and Catherine Charlton Bayley Elizabeth s father Dr Bayley was a well respected surgeon Her only sibling was her sister Catherine Her father taught her to love and care for others through his actions One example of this would be when Dr Bayley risked his life to care for many of the people who suffered during a great outbreak of the yellow fever

Throughout Elizabeth s childhood, she suffered many losses including her mother s death in the year 1777 Then her baby sister Catherine died in 1778 at the age of three Not long after Elizabeth s father married Charlotte Amelia Barclay who participated in the Episcopalian social ministry Occasionally Charlotte took Elizabeth on her charity rounds Elizabeth learned the value of prayer reading scripture and having a nightly examination of conscience through her Episcopalian upbringing At the age of 19 Elizabeth married William Magee Seton on January 5th, 1794 William was a wealthy businessman in the area of export trade During their marriage the couple had 5 children Anna Maria William II Richard Catherine and Rebecca Mary 

The family regularly attended the Trinity Episcopal Church where Elizabeth grew in her faith Elizabeth s social ministry continued throughout her marriage and she eventually became a member of The Society for the Relief of Poor Widows with Small Children William and Elizabeth s marriage seemed to have good fortune until it was struck with financial troubles Due to the loss of some merchant ships and a disagreement between the US and the French republic William Seaton became bankrupt In addition to his financial troubles William suffered from tuberculosis and he continued to decline in his health Shortly thereafter William was sent to Italy because doctors believed that the warmer climate would help with his worsening tuberculosis With his beloved wife and oldest daughter by his side William died in Italy on December 27 1803 Without a source of income Elizabeth was left impoverished with five young children to raise While in Italy Elizabeth had developed many friendships who helped her through her sorrow and loss Through the loving actions of her dear Italian friends Elizabeth was introduced into the Catholic faith Elizabeth felt a great desire to receive the Eucharist and had a devotion the Blessed Virgin Mary as her true mother Elizabeths 

Italian friends also taught her Catholic catechesis Thereafter Elizabeth moved back to the United States to continue her studies of the Catholic faith At the age of 30 on March 14, 1805, Elizabeth joined the Catholic Church and received the Eucharist While in Baltimore Maryland the president of Saint Mary's College asked her to start an all-girls school which she did Once news traveled that Elizabeth Ann Seton had become Catholic some families took their daughters out of the school It was at that time that Elizabeth and two other co-workers solidified their intention to become sisters Afterward they set up the very first free American Catholic school This school was well accepted in the community Elizabeth worked hard in these endeavors all while Elizabeth raising her children Elizabeth s calling to sisterhood was complete when she took her vows on March 21, 1807

Sister Elizabeth Ann Seton was henceforth called Mother Seaton She kept her devotion to Mary and to the Eucharist as she continued to open new Catholic schools and orphanages Mother Seaton died of tuberculosis at the age of 46 on January 4 1821 In 1963 she was beatified by Pope John XXIII and was canonized in 1975 by Pope John Paul VI She now is known as Saint Elizabeth Ann Seaton In conclusion Saint Elizabeth Ann Seaton was a strong Christian woman who was struck with many losses of loved ones early in her life Through prayer and devotion to Jesus she stayed strong and eventually found her way to the Catholic faith This faith and love of Christ as well as her devotion to Mary gave her great comfort Saint Elizabeth Ann Seaton is an excellent American because she paved the way for other Catholic women to thrive in America though her all girls Catholic schools She also opened many orphanages that helped children in need Saint Elizabeth Ann Seaton has made an impact on my life through her persistence and Christian love of others even though she faced many trials I hope she will make an impact on your life as well

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