Saints

How did Saint John Neumann become a saint?

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2010-01-25 03:07:43
2010-01-25 03:07:43

In March 1852 Neumann was consecrated in Baltimore, as Bishop of Philadelphia. He was the first bishop in the United States to organize a Catholic diocesan school system, and he increased the number of Catholic schools in his diocese from one to one hundred. His construction campaign extended to parishes churches as well. He actively invited religious orders to establish new houses within the diocese and founded a congregation of Franciscan Sisters, the Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis of Philadelphia. He brought the School Sisters of Notre Dame from Germany to assist in religious instruction and staffing an orphanage and intervened to save the Oblate Sisters of Providence from dissolution. He established and built so many new parish churches within the diocese that one was completed almost at the rate of one every month.[2] His facility with languages endeared him to the many new immigrant communities in the city. As well as ministering to newcomers in his native German, he also spoke Italian fluently and ministered personally to a growing congregation of Italian-speakers in his private chapel. He eventually established the first Italian national parishes in the country for them. Neumann's efforts to expand the church throughout his diocese was not without oppostion. The Know Nothings, an anti-Catholic political party, was at the height of its activities, setting fire to convents and schools. Discouraged, Neumann wrote to Rome asking to be replaced as bishop, but he received a reply from Pope Pius IX insisting that he continue. In 1854, Neumann traveled to Rome and was present at St. Peter's Basilica on December 8, along with 53 cardinals, 139 other bishops, and thousands of priests and laity, when Pope Pius IX solemnly defined ex cathedra the dogma of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary. While running errands on January 5, 1860, Neumann collapsed and died on a city street, due to a stroke. He was 48 years old. Bishop James Frederick Wood, who had been appointed his coadjutor with right of succession, then took office as Bishop of Philadelphia. Neumann's date of death, January 5, is now his feast day in the Roman Catholic Church.

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Saint John Neumann is a saint but not considered a patron saint at thus time. As per the Patron Saint Index.

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John Neumann was canonized on June 19, 1977, by Pope Paul VI.

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