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Francis X. Seelos
Born at Füssen, Bavaria, 11 January, 1819; died at New Orleans, La., 4 Oct., 1867. When a child, asked by his mother what he intended to be, he pointed to the picture of his patron, St. Francis Xavier, and said: "I'm going to be another St. Francis." He pursued his studies in Augsburg and Munich, and entered the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer, offering himself for the Amricnan Mission; he arrived in America on 17 April, 1843. That following year, 16 May, 1844, he made his religious profession at the Redemptorist novitiate, Baltimore, and seven months later he was ordained by Archbishop Eccleston of Baltimore. He was assigned to St. James, Baltimore. In May 1845, he was sent to Pittsburg, where he had as superior Ven. John Neumann. In 1851 Father Seelos was appointed superior of the Pittsburg community, where he laboured untiringly for nine years. His confessional was constantly besieged by crowds of people of every description and class. It was said by many that he could read their very souls. From Pittsburg, he was transferred to St. Alphonsus's, Baltimore, where he fell dangerously ill. On his recovery he was appointed prefect (spiritual director) of the professed students, and he succeeded in winning the love an esteem of all who were privleged to be under his spiritual guidance. In 1860 his name was proposed for the vacant Holy See of Pittsburg, but humbly refused the honour. The year 1962 found him again at mission work. In 1866 he was summoned to Detroit, and in September of the same year to New Orleans, Louisiana. The cause of his beatification is in progress.
ZIMMER, Leben des P.F.Z. Seelos (New York, 1887); BECK, Die Redemptorists in Ammapolis (Ilchester, 1904); BENEDETTI, Album Servorum Dei, C.SS.R. (Rome, 1903); SHEA, History of the Catholic Church in the United States, I (New york, 1908).
Cornelius J. Warren