Vincentian Digital Books


Shin Ja Lee



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Elizabeth Ann Seton became the first North American-born saint in 1975 and her sainthood was a fruit of her spiritual formation in the Episcopal and the Catholic Church. That formation qualified her as a spiritual director to her contemporaries. This dissertation examined what characterized her reception and practice of spiritual direction through an analysis of her letters, journals, meditations, her translations and works she copied.

This dissertation claims that Elizabeth was a qualified spiritual director and her practice of spiritual direction contributed to the enrichment of the ministry of spiritual direction. Her biblical, Eucharistic, liturgical, and ecclesiastical piety led individuals to deepen their spiritual life by following her example of piety. Her emphasis on the Christcentered life in her spiritual direction offered insight on the method and goal of spiritual formation. Her method of spiritual direction via her letters and writings contributed to the ministry of spiritual direction by encouraging individuals by their own letters and spiritual reflections to aid others in deepening their spiritual life.

Publication Date



Shin Ja Lee


Washington, D.C.

Country of Publication

United States



Subject Headings

Seton, Elizabeth Ann, Saint, 1774-1821

The Practice of Spiritual Direction In the Life and Writings of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton