Mother Angelica, founder of Global Catholic Network, has died

Mother Angelica "made a deal with God" in 1956 when she was facing a spinal surgery that could have ended her ability to walk.

Despite having only a high school education, no television experience and only $200 in the bank, Mother Angelica officially launched the Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN) on August 15, 1981, and served as the Network's first Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. Thanks to the continued growth of the media apostolate she founded - an apostolate in which we eagerly participate - people will be able to learn and laugh with Mother Angelica for many years to come.

Born Rita Antoinette Rizzo in Canton, Ohio, in 1923, Mother Angelica entered the Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration monastery in Cleveland at the age of 21.

After founding the Irondale monastery, her parish talks and approach to teaching the Catholic faith led to converting the monastery garage into a TV studio. The religious network broadcasts terrestrial and shortwave radio around the world, operates a religious goods catalog and publishes the National Catholic Register and Catholic News Agency, among other publishing ventures.

Bedridden for months, Mother Angelica was placed on a feeding tube this fall as her health slowly declined, fellow nuns at Our Lady of the Angels Monastery said in an announcement released in November.

A Roman Catholic nun in the U.S. who founded a global media empire has died aged 92.

On most days, pilgrims arrive from all over the world to visit the grounds of the shrine that Mother Angelica built at an estimated cost of more than $30 million, paid for by donations, on 300 acres outside Hanceville.

Throughout her life, she struggled with painful illnesses and physical challenges. As a result, she spent the last years of her life without the capacity for speech.

She succumbed about 5 p.m. (6 p.m. ET) in Hanceville, Alabama, to the aftereffects of a stroke she suffered many years ago, according to the network's Catholic News Agency.

The network, which has been at times been criticised by both liberal and conservative Catholics, says it tries to be loyal to the Vatican and reports extensively on the Pope's statements and trips. Interment will immediately follow in the Shrine's Crypt Church.

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