Skip to main content

Mehegan, Mary Xavier, Mother

MEHEGAN, MARY XAVIER, MOTHER

Founder, New Jersey Sisters of Charity; b. Skibereen, Ireland, Feb. 19, 1825; d. Convent Station, New Jersey, June 24, 1915. Mehegan's parents, Patrick and Johanna (Miles) Mehegan, named her Catherine Josephine. In 1844 she and her sister Margaret left for the U.S. without the knowledge of their mother. In 1847 Mehegan became one of the first postulants received by the New York Sisters of Charity after their separation from the community in Emmitsburg, Maryland. As Sister Mary Xavier, she was one of the three sisters who opened St. Vincent's Hospital in New York.

In 1858 James Roosevelt Bayley, first bishop of Newark, N.J., and a nephew of Mother Elizabeth Seton, requested Sister Mary Xavier and Sister Mary Catherine Nevin to supervise five novices who had been trained for him by the Cincinnati Sisters of Charity. On this basis, the sisters' New Jersey community was formally inaugurated on Sept. 29, 1859. The motherhouse was located first at old St. Mary's, Newark, and then, after July 2, 1860, at Madison, New Jersey, where St. Elizabeth's school for girls was opened also.

During the Civil War, Mother Xavier worked with the sisters in hospitals in Newark and Trenton. After the war, her order increased in numbers; new land was purchased, and additional buildings were constructed. The missions of the order flourished, and new ones were opened in Massachusetts, New York, and Connecticut. In 1899 Mother Xavier founded, at Convent Station, the College of St. Elizabeth, the first college for women in New Jersey. In 1915, when she had served as superior for 57 years, her community numbered 1,200 sisters and maintained 94 missions, including schools, hospitals, orphanages, nurseries, and homes for the aged.

Bibliography: m. a. sharkey, The New Jersey Sisters of Charity, 3 v. (New York 1933). b. m. mceniry, Woman of Decision: The Life of Mother Mary Xavier Mehegan (New York 1953).

[b. m. mceniry]

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Mehegan, Mary Xavier, Mother." New Catholic Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. 15 Oct. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Mehegan, Mary Xavier, Mother." New Catholic Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 15, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/religion/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/mehegan-mary-xavier-mother

"Mehegan, Mary Xavier, Mother." New Catholic Encyclopedia. . Retrieved October 15, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/religion/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/mehegan-mary-xavier-mother

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.