I just heard on EWTN a call in, Mrs. Jacobs, who said she wasn't getting up this morning to watch Mass on EWTN but her cat jumped on her and made her get up (cats do that!) to feed him and she turned on EWTN's Mass which was a Memorial Mass of the Dead for Mother. The caller did not know that she had died but was uplifted by the Mass and her cat. Mother had a cat she loved in her last years too as pictured below:
I have to laugh now, but after that show was aired live and then shown over and over again in reruns all over the world, by the way, I would get emails from people everywhere asking me to be their liturgical consultant for their parish as they either wanted to build a new church or undo the damage that a wreckovation wrought on their old church! Of course I am not a liturgical consultant and felt if I gave in to the invitations to be one and go where I was invited I would be a charlatan. I blush now thinking that people thought I was something I wasn't!
But what the show I am watching now reminded me of is that Mother Angelica always focused on Jesus and that all of us should have a right relationship with Him through His Holy Catholic Church. Mother was concerned not just about the wreckovation of church buildings but the symbol it was about the more demonic wreckovation of Holy Mother Church by modernists who are like the liberal Protestants of the Enlightenment period of the late 1800's. The center for them is mankind and building a new Tower of Babel where the hand holding kumbaya singing congregation becomes so self-referential that Jesus is hidden or worse yet, left out altogether!
Mother Angelic always in her habit, first when she entered religious life in the full Poor Clare habit and then later in a very traditional modified habit and then even later once again in the full habit, was the nun that taught a new generation of Catholics the way the older generation of nuns had taught the Church, with clarity, charity and no nonsense. For the most part, in the pre-Vatican II era when we had nuns galore teaching us in Catholic schools and CCD programs, they were the ones who brought scores of children and their parents into a closer relationship with Jesus in their everyday contact with us. They were the ones who encouraged young boys and teenagers to consider the priesthood. The huge number of candidates we had by the 1940's and 50's was in large part due to the good sisters who promoted vocations to both the priesthood and religious life in a wonderful way. And we children saw the good, bad and ugly of the sisters but loved and respected them nonetheless even when we knew who we liked and didn't like and who we would stay close to and away from! Religious life was presented to us in a real way, everyday and not in a plastic way whatsoever.
I thank Mother Angelica as a true Servant of God, Mother Angelica the Great. She was/is the most powerful woman in modern Catholic history perhaps second to soon to be saint, Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta. But she wasn't, isn't just the most powerful woman, but the most powerful person, man or woman. Yet she always pointed to Jesus and the authentic Church. Her style of teaching, very nun like, is perennial and what she taught won't ever be considered passe. You can watch her 1990's shows and these are relevant for today. (Her shows transcends the time in which they were produced much in the way that I Love Lucy does.)
What I love about Mother Angelica and her EWTN network is that she was/is a thorn in the side of progressive religious and laity who were trying to deconstruct the liturgy and thus the Church and place the focus on themselves and others in a horizontal, idolatrous way and to make Vatican II, a mere pastoral ecumenical Council, into an immutable false god of the most dogmatic and authoritarian type!
Mother Angelica always focused on Jesus and that we have a right relationship with Him through the true Church before we died in order that we be spared the fires of hell and be welcomed into the kingdom of heaven by our Lord at our particular judgement.
Mother had her enemies in the hierarchical Church, especially certain cardinals and bishops. Her dissent was always against those who harmed the Church be it with their incompetent administration of the Church or their arrogant embrace of modern ideological theologies that were/are destroying the true Church in the lives of rank and file Catholics. THE BISHOPS OF THE USA WERE EXTREMELY ENVIOUS, IN FACT GREEN WITH ENVY, THAT SHE COULD PULL OFF A NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL TELEVISION NETWORK WHILE THE ONE THEY TRIED TO DEVELOP FAILED IN THE MOST EMBARRASSING WAY POSSIBLE! THIS WAS AT THE ROOT OF THEIR NEGATIVE ANIMUS TOWARDS MOTHER ESPECIALLY THE INFAMOUS ROGER CARDINAL MAHONEY WHO MAKES CARDINAL BERNARD LAW OF BOSTON LOOK LIKE MARY POPPINS WHEN IT COMES TO THE MISMANAGEMENT OF CORRUPT AND SEXUALLY PERVERTED PRIESTS LEADING TO THE GREATEST SCANDAL IN THE HISTORY OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH. MOTHER ANGELICA, A MERE TRADITIONAL WOMAN RELIGIOUS, ACTUALLY SHOWED BISHOPS HOW TO TEACH, RULE AND SANCTIFY THE CHURCH AND THE INCOMPETENT ONES TRULY HATED HER FOR IT!
As a populist, Mother Angelica brought the true traditional faith of the Church to rank and file Catholics who had grown tired of what the modernists had done in the most pre-Vatican II authoritarian way to the Church their loved, the Mass they loved and the religious life they had loved.
Mother long before Pope Francis, another populist, ministered to rank and file, bread and butter Catholics who had been marginalized and shoved to the periphery by Church leaders, cardinals, bishops, priests and modern religious who had their own horizontal image of the Church where they and the laity would be central, not Jesus Christ the King reigning in glory and leading us out of our horizontal enclosed circle of ideologies. And Mother, long before Pope Francis, used a language to teach Catholics which was humorous, memorable and on target! She used a language that intellectual academic theologians, amateurs and professionals, would scoff at. In many ways, Mother had a disdain for intellectuals in the Church that sterilized the message of the Church. Pope Francis would be in agreement with Mother in this regard and how to teach the faith to the populace!
Eternal rest grant unto Mother Mary Angelica O Lord and let light perpetual shine upon her. May she rest in peace. May her soul and all the souls of the faithful departed rest in peace through the mercy of God!