In 1872, after recovering from smallpox contracted while visiting the sick and the poor, she was asked to teach at a girls' school. After six years of teaching, she followed the request of her bishop and founded the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart to care for the poor children in schools and hospitals. She eventually came to the United States in 1889 at the urging of Pope Leo XIII. She was accompanied by six Sisters, and their mission was to work among the Italian immigrants of New York City.
Before long, she founded schools, hospitals, and orphanages, and by the time of her death in Chicago on December 22, 1917, her institute numbered houses in England, France, Spain, and South America. In 1946 she became the first American citizen to be canonized, when Pope Pius XII elevated her to sainthood. We celebrate her feast day on November 13.
The Saint Frances Cabrini Shrine is located at 710 Fort Washington Avenue (190th street) in New York City. Phone 212-923-3536.
Mother Cabrini Shrine in Golden Colorado
Photo Copyright 1946 by N.G.Basevi.
Article appeared in "The Cabrini Connection" Volume 1. Issue 1. Fall 1997.
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