Category Archives: Simon Brute

Death of Elizabeth Ann Seton, January 4, 1821

Sketch of Elizabeth Ann Seton

Sketch of Elizabeth Ann Seton by Simon Gabriel Bruté. Handwritten text at the top reads, “Pray for me.” Handwritten text at the bottom reads, “Mother Seton on her death bed 1/2 hour after she had expired on the 4th of January 1821.” Image and all text used with permission of the Daughters of Charity Province of St. Louise Archives.

Account of Simon Bruté taken from Mother Seton: Notes by Rev. Simon Gabriel Bruté (Bishop of Vincennes) (Emmitsburg, 1884), p.29-32.

January 4, 1821. “Ask Heaven to praise and love Him” my last words to Mother, at four o’clock in the afternoon, were my last indeed, and of any priest on earth to her, to day, at two after midnight she removed to her eternal Home.

They had called Sister Mary Xavier, the Assistant some time before, as she seemed dying. She was wholly conscious but so often deceived, seemed not to believe it was yet the time. However, after she had welcome in a pleasant manner Sister Mary Xavier, by: “Is it you Xavier?” she united with their prayers, which they repeated by intervals, and it being manifest she was dying, her poor daughter Josephine began to cry aloud in a distressing manner, and could not restrain herself, but rather had such convulsions as made the Sisters afraid she would die before her mother. So they sent for me, as much for her as for Mother, whom they considered so long and fully prepared.

The dying mother must have well noticed that exceeding grief of her daughter, but happily seemed not to be disturbed by it, being we hope long tried and strengthened that side [sic]. She soon could not breathe and ceased to live.

I arrived quarter of an hour after she had expired.

Towards midnight, one of the nurses tells me, offering her a drink she refused a moment, “in hope,” she said, “that on the morning she might be granted one Communion more,” – (like her Anina) – The night of Sunday last, after the Viaticum of Saturday, being extremely thirsty towards midnight the same nurse, Sister Susan, urged her to drink.

“O, no!” she said. “Eternity, let us mind that,” and she kept on for one communion more.
Last night, amidst the various prayers said for her she began the prayer of Pius VII – “May the most just, the most high, and the most amiable will of God be accomplished forever!” …

… She had about an hour of hard agony, then, ending sweetly — When Sister Xavier said: “Our Lord calls you!” she asked “Who?” as if not actually sensible of that call. Then she lowered her breathing, and died very gently, “as if to sleep,” said Sister Anastasia: and not a struggle or gasp afterword.

3 Comments

Filed under Elizabeth Ann Seton, Simon Brute, Sisters of Charity of St. Joseph's

Last days of Elizabeth Ann Seton – January 3, 1821

Sketch of Elizabeth Ann Seton

Sketch of Elizabeth Ann Seton by Simon Gabriel Bruté, 1821. Handwritten text reads:
“3d january 1821 last words to her: “ask & you [words “shall receive” crossed out] ask our Jesus, his heaven to see him, love him, praise & you shall receive — ask & you shall receive –“…” Image and all text used with permission of the Daughters of Charity Province of St. Louise Archives.

Account of Simon Bruté taken from Mother Seton: Notes by Rev. Simon Gabriel Bruté (Bishop of Vincennes) (Emmitsburg, 1884)

(p.28-29)
January 3, I have seen Mother a moment this morning. In the same situation and quiet disposition.
In the afternoon as I went to open the retreat of the children for their First Communion, I entered her room to request her to bless them, and pray for them, saying, may be [sic] our Lord would spare her to have one Communion more with them on the day of Epiphany. I told her I was beginning with them by the joy the Angels announced to the shepherds, and that which the good Magi felt seeing the star. I repeated to her the verse that says, God does for us “more than we think or ask,” and at last the “Ask, and you shall receive,” which I believe I had said also in the morning. “Ask Heaven, Mother! The truth and love of our Jesus are pledged, having said ‘Ask and you shall receive.’ Ask Heaven.”

Leave a comment

Filed under Elizabeth Ann Seton, Simon Brute, Sisters of Charity of St. Joseph's

Last days of Elizabeth Ann Seton – January 2, 1821

Sketch of Mother Seton

Sketch of Elizabeth Ann Seton by Simon Gabriel Bruté, 1821. Handwritten text at the bottom reads, “Mother 2d january 1821 after mass”. Handwritten text at the top reads, “Come thou shalt be crowned.” Image and all text used with permission of the Daughters of Charity Province of St. Louise Archives.

January 4 is the feast day of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton. Our blog posts for January 2, 3, and 4 will highlight Mother Seton’s final days, as recorded by Simon Gabriel Bruté, Mother Seton’s spiritual director. The accounts are taken from Mother Seton: Notes by Rev. Simon Gabriel Bruté (Bishop of Vincennes) (Emmitsburg, 1884).

(pages 20-21).
2 January. After Mass, at which I recommended prayers for the Mother of the Visitation at Georgetown, whose happy rest in our Lord, I heard yesterday, I was called to Mother “like dying.” I went, and she looked almost so.

“I will repeat some acts to you”, said I, kneeling by her. “You need but say yes.”

I thus suggested acts of love, thanksgiving, contrition, acceptation of His will – all His adorable and amiable will in every order of life and death. I added an act of petition, to grant her Heaven, to love Him, and praise Him forever. She assented with the “yes” or motion of the head and lips. I repeated the holy absolution; then offered the last indulgence which she was willing to receive.
I went to vest, and many Sisters came in. She joined, to her best, while I read the indulgence, for which I made her repeat the holy names of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph.

I offered to read the Departing Prayers, and together we said the Litany and the first prayer, “Depart,” she uniting, but at the end of the second she seemed fatigued, and to spare her I ceased, asking her to prayer for all and bless all, to which she answered: — “be sure!” I retired.

1 Comment

Filed under Elizabeth Ann Seton, Simon Brute, Sisters of Charity of St. Joseph's