Hello and welcome to Mother Seton Parish website
St. Augustine (d. 5th C) said something like “Our heart is restless until it rests in You, my God.” Maybe you are simply looking for mass times, or maybe how to sign up your child for faith formation, or maybe it is something else entirely, hopefully not because you are complaining about traffic issues when we empty our parking lot. However, in any case, my bet is that you have felt this restlessness at some point in your life.
Pope Benedict XVI, in his encyclical Deus Caritas Est (God is Love) says in the introduction, “We have come to believe in God’s love: in these words, the Christian can express the fundamental decision of his life. Being Christian is not the result of an ethical choice or a lofty idea, but the encounter with an event, a person, which gives life a new horizon and a decisive direction.”
Fundamentally, Mother Seton parish exists to foster this encounter of an event with Christ that Pope Benedict speaks of. Servant of God, Monsignor Luigi Giussani says, “The real presence of Christ is located, is within, the unity of believers, that is, the Church. The Church as Christ founded her: with authority, with bishops, and with mysterious gestures called Sacraments…and it arises in a community, one that may be small and wretched, small and full of defect, because it is made up of people like us, but – if it is faithful to the constituted authority – always exists in service to the whole Church as a sign of Christ’s path.” (Morality: Memory and Desire)
Specifically, Mother Seton Parish is made up of, not a small group, but over 3000 households who contribute regularly and another 2000 visitors. Germantown is one of the most diverse cities in the U.S. today. As many newcomers from other countries are Catholic, we are enriched by the numerous cultures which form a beautiful unity in our faith in Christ and His Church.
However, we do not make Jesus Christ present; we celebrate that He is already here. St. John the Baptist simply pointed out the fact, “There is the Lamb of God”. I believe that affirming salvation already present, pointing it out, and giving witness to it, is our mission, whatever state of life we have.
St. Elizabeth Ann Seton (Mother Seton as she was known in her life) was a 19th century, first born American saint (Colonial, not continental). She was a convert from the Episcopal Church, a wife, mother, widow and finally founder of a religious community of women (Sisters of Charity). Born in New York in 1774, she lived and died here in Maryland (Baltimore and Emmitsburg). She was canonized in 1976 as the United States of America celebrated its Bi-Centennial. Our parish was founded in 1974 while she was still a “Blessed” and so we kept the name “Mother Seton”. Her deep love of Christ led her to the Catholic Church, and she had great love of Jesus in the Eucharist. Her witness attracted many to the Church and her community. She continues to do so for us today. Whether we are grew up here in Montgomery County or arrived crossing great distances, we find a home in Christ.
I hope you find the information you are looking for here. I also hope you join us as we discern what Christ is doing in our lives today.
-Father Lee Fangmeyer and the Mother Seton parish community