Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton Feast Day
Elizabeth Ann Seton was born in New York City as Elizabeth Ann Bayley in 1774.
Brought up as an Episcopalian, she married William M. Seton, heir to a wealthy family, at age 19. In 1803 her husband contracted tuber-culosis and the couple sailed to Italy so he could recuperate. Months later in Pisa, Italy, William died. While in Italy, Elizabeth was taken in by friends of her husband. They introduced her to the Catholic faith. Upon her return to New York, she converted to Catholicism.
On Ash Wednesday in 1805, Elizabeth Ann Bayley Seton entered for the first time the little wooden Church of St Peter that originally stood on this site on Barclay Street. She prayed that God would direct her in searching for the truth and in seek-ing spiritual consolation. God answered her prayer with the won-drous grace of conversion and on March 14th she was received into the Catholic Church at “Old” St. Peter’s and on March 25th (Feast of the Annunciation) she received Our Lord in the Sacra-ment of the Holy Eucharist.
A little while later, Elizabeth and her five children moved to Maryland. There she opened a school for girls. She formed a community based on the rule of the Sisters of Charity of St. Vin-cent de Paul of France. The rule was officially adopted—-and the Sisters of Charity became America’s first congregation of women religious.