EWTN founder Mother Angelica on feeding tube

Catholic media pioneer Mother Mary Angelica has been put on a feeding tube as her health had been slowly declining.

The founder of the Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN) is in a stable condition.

Her doctors felt it necessary to put her on a feeding tube to ensure that she is receiving proper nutrition.

Mother Angelica suffered an incapacitating stroke in 2001.

The sisters at her Alabama monastery said that the tube is not a last-ditch effort to keep her alive, and that the 92-year-old nun has regained some strength and weight.

Luke Johansen, a spokesman for the Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration, Mother Angelica’s order, said “The Lord is in charge; she may be taken tomorrow, we don’t know”.

“But at least the initial intent of the feeding tube was not an end-of-life kind of thing, but to assist her and help her get the nutrients she was lacking.”

And that has seemed to work, he said.

She is able to take some foods orally and to receive the host and wine of the sacraments most days.

Mother Angelica remains confined to bed and sleeps a good deal, Mr Johnasen said, and she is unable to communicate except by squeezing a visitor’s hand, or with a smile.

“When she’s awake, her mind is very lucid,” he said.

“She knows who people are.”

A recent update from her order stated: “There were some up and down moments, and Mother has suffered a great deal these past months.”

Famed for her TV appearances wearing a black-and-white habit and a sweet but steely smile, Mother Angelica would not hesitate to scold Church leaders who she felt were too lax in their teachings or practices.

She promoted traditional devotions and rites and claimed to have experienced mystical visions herself.


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