The Paulist Fathers were founded in 1858 by a group of former missionaries. The group was led by Father Isaac Hecker who believed that Protestant America could convert solely to Roman Catholic via spirituality. The Paulist Fathers used three main forms to express their message: sermons, public lectures, and the distribution of pamphlets and newspapers that explained what they stood for. The mission of the Paulist Fathers is to create one unified Roman Catholic America. Their mission statement includes giving the “Word of God a voice” and searching out those individuals who have no church or religion, or given theirs up, and seek to offer them home in Roman Catholicism. Continue reading →
My object is a selection of pages from the Spiritual Journal of Walter Elliott. The image above is only one page from the series on “Mortal Sins.” Written sometime in the late 1800’s, this is a personal journal written by the Paulist priest, Walter Elliott. Elliott is best known for his book The Life of Father Hecker which is a biography of Father Isaac Hecker, who is considered the founder of the Paulist branch of Catholicism. Within the journal, Elliott explores many different religious topics such as Mortal Sin, the role of the Virgin Mary, and Hell.
In the 1850’s, America began to split apart in the wake of the Civil War, and it was because of this impending segregation that Father Isaac Hecker founded the Paulist Fathers in 1858. Hecker believed that the root of America’s troubles was the lack of common religion, and that “there must be a “Church” in America and not denominations, for only this kind of religion could prevent sectional and political differences from leading to hostility”.  With this vision in mind, the Paulist missionary’s set out in an effort to calm the impending war. Continue reading →
The Spiritual Journal of Walter Elliott is a hand-written journal from the late 1800’s that includes many topics of faith, such as blasphemy, mortal sins, hell, death of sinners, and lessons on death, amongst other topics. Walter Elliott was a Roman Catholic priest and missionary of the Saint Paul the Apostle Church. Saint Paul’s is the mother church of the Paulist Fathers, the community we are serving for our Academic-Service Learning project. The Paulist Fathers have housed this document in their archive at St. Paul’s College in Washington D.C. and requested the help of the St. John’s University Department of Library and Information Science Department community in its transcription. In 1891, Walter Elliott wrote Life of Father Hecker, which is a book about the life of the founder of the Paulist Fathers. Walter Elliott was ordained as a priest into the Paulist Fathers Parish in 1872. Continue reading →
A page from the Spiritual Journal of Walter Elliott on the subject of Hell.
This object is part of a six-page excerpt from the Spiritual Journal of Walter Elliott. Walter Elliott, born on January 6, 1842, was one of the first missionaries with the Paulist Fathers, a group dedicated to spreading the word of God and reaching out to immigrant communities, those who are alienated, those who question or seek faith, and people of diverse racial, cultural and economic backgrounds. Elliott was ordained a priest in 1872 and around that same time, authored a spiritual journal where he discussed fourteen individual topics related to religion and Catholic Christianity. Continue reading →