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Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos

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Title: Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos


1
Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos
2
Birth and Baptism
  • Seelos was born on January 11, 1819 in Fussen,
    Bavaria, Germany.
  • He was baptized on the same day in the parish
    church of St. Mang.

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4
Seminarian
  • Having expressed a desire for the priesthood
    since childhood, he entered the diocesan seminary
    in 1842 after having completed his studies in
    philosophy. He was 23 years old.

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6
Redemptorists Congregation of the Most Holy
Redeemer
  • Soon after meeting the missionaries of the
    Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer
    (Redemptorists), founded for the evangelization
    of the most abandoned, he decided to enter the
    Congregation.

7
German Immigrant
  • He wanted to minister to the German speaking
    immigrants in the United States.
  • He was accepted by the Redemptorist Congregation
    on November 22, 1842.
  • He sailed the following year from
  • Le Havre, France
  • arriving in New York on April 20, 1843.

8
LeHarve, France, New York, U.S.A.
Le Havre
9
Ordained
  • On December 22, 1844, after having completed his
    novitiate and theological studies, Seelos was
    ordained a priest in the Redemptorist Church of
    St. James in Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.A.

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12
St. Philomena Pastor 1850-1853
  • After being ordained, he worked for nine years
    (1844-1853) in the parish of St. Philomena in
    Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, first as assistant
    pastor with St. John Neumann, the superior of the
    Religious Community, and later as Superior
    himself and for the last three years as pastor.

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Seelos and St. Neumann
  • During this time, he was also the Redemptorist
    Novice Master. With St.John Neumann he dedicated
    himself to preaching missions.
  • Regarding their relationship, Seelos said He
    has introduced me to the active life and, he
    has guided me as a spiritual director and
    confessor.

15
Seelos and Neumann
  • Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos
  • St John Neumann

16
Confessor
  • His availability and innate kindness in
    understanding and responding to the needs of the
    faithful, quickly made him well known as an
    expert confessor and spiritual director, so much
    so that people came to him even from neighboring
    towns.

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Redemptorist
  • Faithful to the Redemptorist charism, he
    practiced a simple lifestyle and a simple manner
    of expressing himself.

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Preacher
  • The themes of his preaching, rich in biblical
    content, were always heard and understood even by
    everyone, regardless of education, culture, or
    background.

21
Seelos' Practical Guide to Holiness
  • 1. Go to Mass with deepest devotion.
  • 2. Spend a half hour to reflect upon your main
    failing make resolutions to avoid it.
  • 3. Do daily spiritual reading for at least 15
    minutes, if a half hour is not possible.
  • 4. Say the rosary every day.
  • 5. Also daily, if at all possible, visit the
    Blessed Sacrament and toward evening, meditate
    on the Passion of Christ for a half hour.

22
Seelos' Practical Guide to Holiness
  • 6. Conclude the day with evening prayer an
    examination of conscience over all the faults
    sins of the day.
  • 7. Every month make a review of the month in
    confession.
  • 8. Choose a special patron every month imitate
    that patron in some special virtue.
  • 9. Precede every great feast with a novena, that
    is, nine days of devotion.
  • 10. Try to begin end every activity with a
    Hail Mary. 

23
Instructor
  • A constant endeavor in this pastoral activity was
    instructing the little children in the faith. He
    not only favored this ministry, he held it as
    fundamental for the growth of the Christian
    community in the parish.

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1854, 1857, 1862
  • He was transferred from Pennsylvania to Maryland
    Baltimore in 1854,
  • then Cumberland in 1857,
  • and to Annapolis in 1862.
  • He engaged in parish ministry and served in the
    formation of future Redemptorists a Prefect of
    Students.

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Pastor
  • Even in this post, he was true to his character
    remaining always the kind and happy pastor,
    prudently attentive to the needs of his students
    and conscientious of their doctrinal formation.

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Teacher
  • Above all, he strove to instill in these future
    Redemptorist missionaries the enthusiasm, the
    spirit of sacrifice and apostolic zeal for the
    spiritual and temporal welfare of the people.

30
Bishop of Pittsburgh
  • In 1860 while assigned to a parish in Cumberland,
    Maryland, he was proposed as a candidate for the
    office of Bishop of Pittsburgh. He asked to be
    excused!

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Itinerant Missionary
  • Having been excused from this responsibility by
    Pope Pius IX, from 1863 until 1866 he dedicated
    himself to the life of an itinerant missionary.

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Itinerant Missionary
  • Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos
  • began preaching in English and German
  • in the states of
  • Connecticut, Illinois, Michigan,
  • Missouri, New Jersey, New York,
  • Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island
  • and Wisconsin.

35
Connecticut
36
Illinois
37
Michigan
38
Missouri
39
New Jersey
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New York
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Ohio
42
Pennsylvania
43
Rhode Island
44
Wisconsin
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New Orleans, Louisiana
  • After a brief period of parish ministry in
    Detroit, Michigan, he was assigned in 1866 to the
    Redemptorist community in New Orleans, Louisiana.

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Church of St.Mary of the Assumption
  • Here also, as pastor of the Church of St. Mary of
    the Assumption, he was known as a pastor who was
    joyously available to his faithful and singularly
    concerned for the poorest and the most abandoned.

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September 1867
  • In Gods plan, however, his ministry in New
    Orleans was destined to be brief. In the month of
    September, exhausted from visiting and caring for
    the victims of yellow fever, he contracted the
    dreaded disease.

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October 4, 1867
  • After several weeks of patiently enduring his
    illness, he passed on to eternal life on October
    4, 1867, at the age of 48 years and 9 months.

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Blessed
  • His Holiness Pope John Paul II, proclaimed Father
    Seelos Blessed in St. Peter's Square on April 9th
    of the Solemn Jubilee Year 2000.  His Feast Day
    is October 5.

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Blessed Tapestry
  • The artist commissioned by the Redemptorists for
    the official Seelos portrait was Giuseppe Antonio
    Lomuscio of Italy.
  • The original oil painting and the tapestry are
    housed at the National Shrine of Blessed Francis
    Xavier Seelos in St. Mary's Assumption Church,
    New Orleans, LA. 

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