Sunday, March 27, 2016

Mother Angelica RIP April 20, 1923 - March 27, 2016

Mother Mary Angelica of the Annunciation
April 20, 1923 - March 27, 2016

Today at 5PM, Easter Sunday, Mother Angelica, the founder of EWTN has passed away in the Lord. Arguably one of the most influential figures of American Catholicism and beyond, will long be remembered for the founding of EWTN along with her wit, humor and wisdom which she often displayed on her television show, 'Mother Angelica Live'. Mother founded EWTN in 1980 and went live on August 15th, 1981. The network now reaches 250 million viewers in 140 countries and is the largest religious media network in the world. It is a fitting day for Mother to pass away into the arms of the Lord on this Easter Sunday. She is one of the few bright lights to have graced the television airwaves in our time.

Mother was born in Canton, Ohio, entered The Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration in 1944, and later founded a new house for the order in 1962, in Irondale Alabama, a suburb of Birmingham. EWTN headquarters is now at that location. While traveling in Bogata in 1995, she had revelation to build a shrine honoring Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament. In 1996 this inspiration was realized when groundbreaking began in Hanceville Alabaman where The Shrine of the Most Blessed Sacrament was founded. The sisters moved there in 1999. For many years she hosted her show, 'Mother Angelica Live' which has never truly been replaced. In 2000 she handed over control of EWTN to a board of laymen and in 2001 she suffered a stroke. Throughout Mother's life she suffered from various illnesses and health issues, yet always demonstrating courage in carrying her cross for Christ.

I have not had the privilege to meet Mother, but I have enjoyed the many fruits she has given us from her efforts to bring the Gospel over the airwaves of EWTN. After my conversion to the Catholic faith EWTN was on my television all hours of the day. I have also had the pleasure of visiting both the shrine and EWTN headquarters and they have always been memorable experiences. Although I believe her to be a Saint, say a prayer for her repose over the coming days. Her funeral will be on Friday April 1st. EWTN will be running a series of programs honoring her memory. To learn more about her incredible story, grab a copy of her biography.