Catholic schools hold as primary belief in God, Christ, and Church, the value of the human person, and commitment to a mission of service.
Saint Elizabeth’s strives to provide students and families with opportunities for growth in faith formation through a variety of liturgical experiences.
By integrating the faith, knowledge, and values they gain, Saint Elizabeth’s students will think critically, discover a love of learning, live the Gospel message, reach out to others in service, further social justice, and deepen their relationship with God.
Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton, Our Patron Saint
Elizabeth Ann Bayley was born in New York City on August 28, 1774, two years before the Declaration of Independence. Her mother died when she was three, and her baby sister died a year later. She was reared as an Episcopalian by her father and stepmother. At 19, she married a wealthy young merchant, William Seton, and they had five children.
In 1803, William became quite ill, and the doctors suggested that a sea voyage would do him good. He died of tuberculosis when they were in Italy, and Elizabeth then spent some time there with friends. While in Italy, she was introduced to and came to appreciate the Catholic faith. She returned to New York and became a Catholic on March 14, 1805, when she was 30 years old.
Many of her family and friends abandoned Elizabeth when she became a Catholic, leaving her and her children without income. She opened a school and began to teach. One day Elizabeth was introduced to a young priest from Baltimore, who told her of the great need in that city for a religious community to teach young girls. Although she felt quite unworthy, she prayed about it, consulted her spiritual director, and agreed to try.
God soon sent Elizabeth several young women who wished to become teaching sisters. He also sent a generous benefactor who provided the finances necessary to build a school, an academy and a hospital in Emmitsburg, Maryland. Elizabeth trained teachers and prepared books, and laid the foundation for the American parochial school system.
Elizabeth Ann Seton founded the U.S. Sisters of Charity, the first native American religious community for women. She also opened the first American Catholic orphanage. Elizabeth made a wonderful Superior, for she gave her sisters a perfect example of prayerfulness, of calm, of mortification and of self-sacrifice. She looked after each sister and young pupil as diligently as she had looked after her own children. She died on January 4, 1821, and was the first American-born citizen to become a saint, canonized by Pope Paul VI on September 14, 1975.
The feast day of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton is celebrated January 4th.
School Outreach Programs
One of the learning outcomes for our Saint Elizabeth’s students is being a good member of the community who helps those in need. As an introduction to the social ministry of the Church, we recognize that our school is part of a wider community and we can make a difference. Many times throughout the year we offer an option for our students to support particular charities by collecting food, clothing or money. We encourage families to discuss if and how they would like to participate in any or all of these drives.
Altar Servers: All Catholic students in 4th to 6th grades are welcome to be altar servers for our school and parish Masses. Through this unique ministry, young people can share their faith with the Saint Elizabeth’s community by their actions and words. Students who choose to serve the parish in this capacity must attend a special training session.
Catholic Schools Week: This annual national celebration, held in late January, honors our Catholic faith and of the privilege we have in attending St. Elizabeth’s school. We share our pride in our high-quality, values-driven Catholic education which we feel stands out among the school choices available to our students and families.
First Communion and First Reconciliation: Catholic 2nd graders spend the year preparing to receive the sacraments of first Reconciliation (usually in November) and first Holy Communion in the spring. This memorable year offers both students and parents’ wonderful opportunities to grow in faith together and to deepen their relationship with God and with one another.
May Crowning Mass: At this special Mass in May, our school gathers to honor the Blessed Virgin Mary. This is a special day for our school as we ceremonially crown Mary’s statue to signify her as Queen of Heaven and the Mother of God.
Wednesday Mass at 9:00am is a special Mass at which we have student lectors and choir members. We especially invite family members to attend! At times the weekday for Mass changes do to Holy Days and other liturgical feasts.