Mother Angelica, the foundress of the EWTN Catholic Television Network, died on Easter Sunday at the age of 92, years after suffering a debilitating stroke.
The Poor Clare nun started the Eternal Word Television Network in 1981, and since then it has grown into one of the largest religious media enterprises in the world, comprising television and radio stations, websites, and publishing entities.
Mother Angelica was born Rita Rizzo on April 20, 1923, in Canton, Ohio. She joined the Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration in Cleveland in 1944.
In 1961, she founded Our Lady of the Angels Monastery in Alabama, and began a taped series a few years later, which led to her first radio program in 1971. This led to work in television, and later to the founding of EWTN. The television network succeeded where other ventures, often better-funded failed.
Mother Angelica retired from her leadership role in 2000, and suffered her stroke the following year.
On hearing of her death Archbishop Eamon, Martin, Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland tweeted the following: “A prayer of thanksgiving for #MotherAngelica who died Easter Sunday, on behalf of all her friends in Ireland. God rest her soul.”