The feast day of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton is celebrated on January 4. She is the patron saint of in-law troubles and loss of children.
St. Elizabeth Ann Seton is the first native born American to be canonized a saint.
Elizabeth was born on Aug. 28, 1774 in New York City. She was raised in the Episcopal Church. At the early age of 3 her mother died. At the age of 19 she married William Seton, a wealthy businessman.
Within four years, she suffered the death of her father in-law which left William in charge, not only of his father’s business but the seven half-brothers and sisters as well. The business failed, forcing bankruptcy.
William became ill with tuberculosis. In an attempt to find a cure they moved to Italy. He died while living in Italy. Elizabeth grew very close to God. She accepted and embraced the will of God. Elizabeth eventually was led into the Catholic church. She had a strong devotion to the Virgin Mary.
St. Elizabeth Ann Seton established the first free Catholic school in America. On March 25, 1809 she took a vow of poverty, chastity, and obedience. She became the founder of the Sisters of Charity, which followed the rules written by St. Vincent de Paul for the Daughters of Charity in France. She became Mother Seton.
Her final years were spent leading and developing the new congregation. The sisters opened free schools and orphanages along the East Coast.
Elizabeth. died in 1821 of tuberculosis at age 46.
Pope John XXIII canonized her as St. Elizabeth Ann Seton on Sept. 14, 1975. He stated,
“In a house that was very small, but with ample space for charity, she sowed a seed in America.”
“Be attentive to the voice of Grace.”
Quote of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton
January is the Month of the Holy Name