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Religious Leaders

Religious leaders from throughout history.

  • Elizabeth Ann Seton (born 1774, died 1821)

    American religious leader and educator known as ''Mother Seton.'' The first native-born American to be named a saint of the Roman Catholic church.

    • Founded the Sisters of Charity
  • St. Frances Xavier Cabrini (born 1850, died 1917)

    Italian-born American nun and missionary. Known as ''Mother Cabrini.'' The first U.S. citizen canonized by the Roman Catholic church.

    • Founded the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart
  • Mary Baker Eddy (born 1821, died 1910)

    American theologian and religious leader.

    • Founded the Church of Christ Scientist
  • Mother Teresa of Calcutta (born 1910, died 1997)

    Albanian missionary who founded schools, orphanages, shelters and clinics in India, ministering to ''the poorest of the poor.'' Original name: Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhu.

    • Founded the Missionaries of Charity
  • St. Teresa of Avila (born 1515, died 1582)

    Spanish mystic and Doctor of the Roman Catholic Church.

    • Spearheaded a reform movement in the Carmelite order
  • Aimee Semple McPherson (born 1890, died 1944)

    American evangelist.

    • Founded the International Church of the Foursquare Gospel
  • Olympia Brown (died 1926)

    American cleric and suffrage activist.

    • First woman ordained as a minister in the United States, in 1863
  • Pajapati Gotami

    The leading female disciple of the Buddha.

    • Founder of the Buddhist order of nuns
  • St. Clare of Assisi (born 1194, died 1253)

    Italian abbess. Because of her miraculous vision of a mass being held in another part of her town, Pope Pius XII named her patron saint of television in 1958.

    • Founded the Poor Clares (Clarissines)
  • St. Angela Merici (died 1540)

    Italian nun.

    • Founded the Ursuline Order
  • St. Madeleine-Sophie Barat (born 1779, died 1865)

    French nun.

    • Founded the Society of the Sacred Heart
  • St. Birgitta of Sweden (died 1373)

    Swedish nun and mystic. Her daughter, Catherine, also became a saint.

    • Founded the Brigittine Order
  • Mother Alphonsa Lathrop (born 1851, died 1926)

    American nun and writer. Original name: Rose Hawthorne. Daughter of author Nathaniel Hawthorne.

    • Founded the Servants of Relief for Incurable Cancer
  • St. Louise de Marillac (born 1591, died 1660)

    French religious and social activist.

    • Cofounder of the Daughters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul
  • Catherine Elizabeth McAuley (born 1787, died 1841)

    Irish nun.

    • Founded the Religious Sisters of Mercy

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