Mother Angelica, RIP

Mother Angelica, RIP

A modern-day prophet died this Easter. Mother Angelica, founder of EWTN and “the Bishop Fulton Sheen of her generation,” died yesterday at the age of 92.

I highly recommend her official biography, Mother Angelica: the remarkable story of a nun, her nerve, and a network of miracles, by Raymond Arroyo. It will acquaint you with an extraordinary woman of faith who married brilliant business acumen with heroic supernatural outlook.

Like all prophets, she unsettled the Establishment and raised the ire of the powerful. On several occasions, bishops and cardinals in America waged aggressive campaigns to silence her, seeking to take over or close down EWTN. Throughout it all, Mother Angelica tenaciously navigated a difficult course which was faithful to natural justice and holy obedience. (It’s easy to imagine her in Heaven swapping notes with St Mary MacKillop. They have a lot in common; I think they’d get along famously.)

Perhaps the defining moment in Mother Angelica’s apostolate was in 1993, in the midst of Denver’s triumphant World Youth Day festival. She broadcast an editorial which infuriated many bishops and cardinals. Archbishop Rembert Weakland described it this way:

For a half hour she ranted and raved about all the abuses since Vatican II, according to her own personal judgment which, of course, she equates with that of the Holy Father. It was one of the most disgraceful, un-Christian, offensive, and divisive diatribes I have ever heard.

I wouldn’t put it that way. I think it is an honest, courageous, and entirely faithful rallying cry, which is still pertinent 20 years later. Watch it and judge for yourself:

Mother Angelica, it seems to me, was a good and faithful servant. May God now complete the good work He began in her. Requiescat in pace.


  • Thanks for this Father. Great clip. Amazing that some of the heads of the Church in the US opposed this so vehemently. Didn’t realise shutting down debate goes

    that far back!
    There aren’t enough Catholics, in my opinion, that state their beliefs, or live out their faith proudly (me included), or make a stand like Mother Angelica when they don’t like something that is culturally damaging. Do you believe conservatives represent a silent majority in Australia? A plebiscite on marriage will hopefully provide somewhat of an answer to this, but keen on your thoughts. Cbeers, Dom

  • MuMu

    No good deed goes unpunished and this was a Mother of all Good Deeds! Mother Angelica paid for this powerful punch of orthodoxy with a decade – or more – of incapacity. Surely this great woman went straight to heaven! She is the antithesis of Eve running amok in the Church.

  • Cathy

    Love Mother Angelica, she was an inspiration to me as a child to express concerns without fear. Like st. Mary Mckillop she respected Authority but voiced concerns when needed.
    “preach the Gospel at all times and when necessary use words” -St. Francis of Assisi

  • Simon Hogan

    Well I back typing my post! Hope you are getting a winner out there! The Big races in Sydney! The US Masters are on this week in Augusta! Can a second Aussie win! I hope Marc Lieshman can win because I know him!
    Plus this Saturday coming is the English Gran National. It is good if you can watch it!
    I got something to share a song and hymn! Well we’ll talk about the hymn first. I love this hymn since was a little boy! Do I know what does it mean not really! Can anyone help!
    Plus this old song I heard last year!
    Keep Well from Simon the Pieman

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