12 More Great American Saints

12 More Great American Saints November 18, 2020

In a previous post I wrote about 12 + American Saints

and now

The Catholic Bard presents to you…

12 More Great American Saints

Margaret Haughery (1813–1882)

Margaret Haughery  was a philanthropist known as “the mother of the orphans”. Margaret Gaffney Haughery (pronounced as HAW -a- ree) was a beloved historical figure in New Orleans, Louisiana the 1880s. Widely known as “Our Margaret,” “The Bread Woman of New Orleans” and “Mother of Orphans,” Margaret devoted her life’s work to the care and feeding of the poor and hungry, and to fund and build orphanages throughout the city.

An Irish immigrant widow woman of many titles, Margaret was also commonly referred to as the “Angel of the Delta,” “Mother Margaret,” “Margaret of New Orleans,” the “Celebrated Margaret”, “Head Mame”, and “Margaret of Tully.” A Catholic, she worked closely with New Orleans Sisters of Charity, associated with the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New Orleans.

She opened up four orphanages in the New Orleans area in the 19th century. Many years later in the 20th and 21st centuries, several of the asylums Margaret founded as places of shelter for orphans and widows evolved into homes for the elderly.

A woman of great charity, Margaret became famed for her lifelong championing of the destitute. Some people considered her a living saint worthy of canonisation. Born into poverty and orphaned at a young age, she began her adult life as a washwoman and a peddler – yet she died a businesswoman and philanthropist and received a state funeral.

Further Resources
Margaret, Friend of Orphans (1996)by Mary Lou Widmer  | Oct 31, 1996

Roots Holy People, Holy Places Episode 6 Margaret Haughery Part 1
Roots Holy People, Holy Places Episode 7 Margaret Haughery Part 2


Fr. Ignatius Maternowski, OFM Conv.  (1912-1944)
In the early morning hours of D-Day, Fr. Ignatius parachuted with a large number of troops into occupied territory, the hamlet of Guetteville in the town of Picauville. An American glider had crashed nearby. There were many casualties. Immediately Fr. Ignatius began ministering to the wounded paratroopers and glider victims. Realizing that a suitable aid station would be needed, Fr. Ignatius calculated a risky strategy: attempting negotiations with his German counterpart, in the peaceful hope of combining their wounded together in one common hospital. Walking between enemy lines unarmed, with helmet hanging from his belt, and wearing his chaplain’s insignia and a Red Cross arm­band, he bravely went to meet with the head Nazi medic. As he returned through the no-man zone to the American side, he was shot in the back by an enemy sniper – becoming the only US chaplain to be killed on D­-Day. He was 32 years of age, in the 5th year of his priesthood.
– From Our Lady of the Angels Website

Further Resources 

Story of His Life

St. John Neumann (March 28, 1811 – January 5, 1860)
Canonized June 19, 1977 Vatican City,by Pope Paul VI
Feast Day January 5,  March 5 (celebrated by the Bohemians)

St. Neumann (not to be confused with St. John Henry Newman)  was a Catholic priest from Bohemia. He immigrated to the United States in 1836, where he was ordained and later joined the Redemptorist order and became the fourth Bishop of Philadelphia (1852–1860). He is the first United States bishop (and to date the only male U.S. citizen) to be canonized. While Bishop of Philadelphia, Neumann founded the first Catholic diocesan school system in the United States.

Further Resources 

Saint John Neumann: His Writings and Spirituality (2010) by Richard Boever
Saint John Neumann (Ess)
(2016) by Laura Brown and Virginia Esquinaldo

 St. John Neumann -The little simple things

Johannes Nepomuk Neumann.jpg

Blessed Titus Brandsma (23 February 1881 – 26 July 1942)
Beatified November 3, 1985 by Pope John Paul II
Feast July 27

Blessed Titus was a Dutch Carmelite friar, Catholic priest and professor of philosophy. Brandsma was vehemently opposed to Nazi ideology and spoke out against it many times before the Second World War. He was imprisoned in the infamous Dachau concentration camp, where he was murdered. He has been beatified by the Roman Catholic Church as a martyr of the faith.

Further Resources
Edith Stein, Marcel Callo, Titus Brandsma: Victims of the Nazis (20th Century Martyrs) (2017)by Matthew Monk   

The “short priest with the cigar” who was killed at Dachau

Celebrating the Saints On YouTube
Titus Brandsma Film Trailer, Carmelite, Martyr, Blessed – On YouTube


Saint Rose Philippine Duchesne (August 29, 1769 – November 18, 1852)
Canonized July 3, 1988, Vatican City, by Pope John Paul II
Feast November 18th

The Italian St. Cabrini went to the US as a missionary although she had wanted to go to China. The French St. Rose on the other hand wanted to go to America as a  missionary. Along with the foundress, Madeleine-Sophie Barat, she was a prominent early member of the Religious Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, So in 1818, when St. Seaton was only 3 years away from her death, St. Rose headed to New Orleans with 4 other sisters  but ended up in St. Louis. The community established a new Sacred Heart convent in a log cabin there, known as the Duquette Mansion, the first house of the Society ever built outside France.

 “”Poverty and Christian heroism are here and trials are the riches of priests in this land.”

She spent the last half of her life teaching and serving the people of the Midwestern United States.

Further Resources 

Rose Philippine Duchesne: A Dreamer and a Missionary (2013)  by Barbara Yoffie and Katherine Borgatti
Saint Rose Philippine Duchesne: A Heart on Fire across Frontiers (2017) by Carolyn Osiek RSCJ  

Saint of the Week: St. Rose Philippine Duchesne


Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos, (January 11, 1819 – October 4, 1867)
Beatified April 9, 2000, Vatican City, by Pope John Paul II
Feast October 5th

Blessed Francis was a German Redemptorist who worked as a missionary in the United States frontier. Towards the end of his life, he went to New Orleans to minister to victims of yellow fever. He then died after contracting the disease.

Further Resources 

A Life of Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos, Redemptorist (2000) by Rev. Carl Hoegerl C.Ss.R. and Alicia von Stamwitz  

Francis Xavier Seelos on YouTube

Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos.jpg

Bl. Carlos Manuel Cecilio Rodríguez Santiago (1918–1963),
Beatified: 29 April 2001 by Pope John Paul II
Feast July 13 (May 4 in Puerto Rico)

He is the first Puerto Rican, the first Caribbean-born layperson in history to be beatified.

Further Resources 

Vincent Robert Capodanno (1929–1967), became a Servant of God On May 21, 2006

Servant of God Vincent was a Roman Catholic priest and Maryknoll Missioner (M.M.) who was killed in action while serving as a United States Navy chaplain assigned to a Marine Corps infantry unit during the Vietnam War. He was a posthumous recipient of America’s highest military decoration, the Medal of Honor, for heroic actions above and beyond the call of duty.

Further Resources
The Grunt Padre (2012) by Fr. Daniel
The Miracle of Father Kapaun: Priest, Soldier and Korean War Hero (2013) by Travis Heying and Roy Wenzl 
Armed with Faith: The Life of Father Vincent R. Capodanno, MM (2018) by Stephen DiGiovanni  

Saint Théodore Guérin (October 2, 1798 – May  14, 1856)
Canonized  October 15th, 2006, Vatican City by Pope Benedict XVI
May 14th (3 October for the Sisters of Providence and in Indiana)

St. Theodore was a French-American saint and the foundress of the Sisters of Providence of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, a congregation of Catholic sisters at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, Indiana. Guérin immigrated to Indiana from France in 1840, and became known for her advancement of education, especially in Indiana and in eastern Illinois; founding numerous schools including Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, Indiana; and for her care of the orphaned, the sick, and the poor of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Vincennes, Indiana.

Further Resources
Saint Mother Theodore Guérin: Woman of Providence (2011) by Sister Diane RisSister Joseph Eleanor Ryan, et al. |

Journals and Letters of Mother Theodore Guerin (2014) by Theodore GuerinMary Theodosia Mug, et al. 
Lest We Forget: The Sisters of Providence of St. Mary-of-the-Woods in Civil War Service
 (2018) by Mary Theodosia Mug 

Ven. Henriette DeLille (1813–1862),
Declared Venerable: March 27, 2010

Ven. Henriette was a Louisiana Creole of color from New Orleans, Louisiana, who founded the Roman Catholic order of the Sisters of the Holy Family in that city. Composed of free women of color, the order provided nursing care and a home for orphans, later establishing schools as well. They taught enslaved children when such education was prohibited by law.[2]

The order grew in number in the late 19th and the first half of the 20th centuries, reaching a peak of 400 sisters in 1950. They taught numerous students in black parochial schools. Since the turn of the century, African Americans in Louisiana, including Creoles, had been disenfranchised by the state legislature and subject to Jim Crow laws. In the 21st century, the order operates facilities for the poor in four states and Washington, DC, in the United States, and has a mission in Belize.

Further Resources

Henriette Delille: Rebellious Saint (2010) by Elsie Martinez

An Hour With Mother Henriette Delille (2020) by SSF Goudeaux, Sr Doris  

Saint Marianne of Molokaʻi, (January 23, 1838 – August 9, 1918)
Canonized October 21, 2012, Vatican City by Pope Benedict XVI
Feast January 23 (Roman Catholic Church) April 15 (Episcopal Church (United States))

In November 1888, Cope moved to Kalaupapa. She cared for the dying Father Damien, SS.CC., who was already known internationally for his work in the leper colony, and began to take over his burdens. She had met him shortly after her arrival in Hawaii.

When Father Damien died on April 15, 1889, the government officially gave Cope charge for the care of the boys of Kalaupapa, in addition to her existing role in caring for the female residents of the colony. A prominent local businessman, Henry Perrine Baldwin, donated money for the new home. Cope and two assistants, Sister Leopoldina Burns and Sister Vincentia McCormick, opened and ran a new girls’ school, which she named in Baldwin’s honor. A community of Religious Brothers was sought to come and care for the boys. After the arrival of four Brothers of the Sacred Heart in 1895, Cope withdrew the Sisters to the Bishop Home for leprous women and girls. Joseph Dutton was given charge of Baldwin House by the government.

Read more about St. Damion in Laborers in the Vineyard of the Lord

She was declared a saint alongside Saint Kateri Tekakwitha. Read more about her in 18 Young Saints and Their Companions 

Further Resources
Pilgrimage & Exile: Mother Marianne of Molokai (2009) by O.S.F. Sister Mary Laurence Hanley and O. A. Bushnell

The Colony: The Harrowing True Story of the Exiles of Molokai  (2010) by John Tayman   

James Alfred Miller (Leo William) [Santiago] (1944–1982),
Beatified: 7 December 2019 by Cardinal José Luis Lacunza Maestrojuán
Feast February 13th

Professed Religious of the Brothers of the Christian Schools (De La Salle Brothers); Martyr (Wisconsin, USA – Huehuetenango, Guatemala)

Miller served as a teacher first in Cretin High School before being sent to teach in Bluefields in Nicaragua where he remained until his superiors ordered him to leave. He was requested to leave his work in Nicaragua due to political tensions that put Miller at risk of being killed but he was frustrated to be sent back to his native home where he remained for some time to teach.  He was known for his construction and practical abilities to the point where students at Cretin High School referred to him as “Brother Fix-It”. Miller was later sent to Guatemala where he taught and he remained there until he was murdered. His killing was never resolved despite a long investigation.

Further Resources 

The Life and Death of Brother James Miller, FSC

Blessed Brother James Miller '66, M'74


Cardinal John Joseph O’Connor (January 15, 1920 – May 3, 2000) was an American prelate of the Catholic Church. He served as Archbishop of New York from 1984 until his death in 2000, and was created a cardinal in 1985. He previously served as a U.S. Navy chaplain (1952–1979, including four years as Chief), auxiliary bishop of the Military Vicariate of the United States (1979–1983), and Bishop of Scranton (1983–1984).

Maybe someday he’ll be a Saint, His cause for Saint Hood is open.

Further Resources

John Cardinal O’Connor: at the storm center of a changing American Catholic Church(1988) by Nat Hentoff
Books at Open Library
Full of Grace: An Oral Biography of John Cardinal O’Connor (2002) by Terry Golway
John Cardinal O’Connor and the Culture of Life (2011) by Charles P. Connor

Cushing, Spellman, O’Connor: The Surprising Story of How Three American Cardinals Transformed Catholic-Jewish Relations
(2011) by Rabbi James Rudin


Cardinal O’Connor & the Sisters of Life on YouTube

John O'Connor (cardinal) - Wikipedia


The goal in this article was not to deliver an original expose American Saints, it was to give you an intro and overview of Great American Saints. The information and descriptions were copied exactly from an already established source that has already said it as exactly and accurately as possible. That source is  Wikipedia which I find gives you pretty good info on various topics.  Catholic Apologist and Mysterious World podcaster links to Wikipedia articles in his show-notes because he believes it a pretty good source of information. If it’s good enough for Jimmy it’s good enough for me. 

Assembling and compiling information is still hard work so the compilation and gathering of information is still totally mine.  I hope you found the information helpful and useful for your spiritual life.

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