‘From the Heart With Mother Angelica’ to Debut on EWTN
Holy Hour discussions from the 1980s offer signature wisdom in new series.
What could be a more welcome series on Eternal Word Television Network than one presenting the wisdom of Mother Angelica anew? That answer comes on the Blessed Mother’s birthday, with the premiere of a new series: From the Heart With Mother Angelica.
The series will again bring episodes of Mother Angelica’s teachings, insights and inspirations from the Holy Hours shown in the late 1980s, at a time when Mass and live devotions were not yet being broadcast over the station. Introducing the first show in the series, Father Joseph Mary Wolfe of the Franciscan Missionaries of the Eternal Word shares how “Mother Angelica sensed a need for the viewers, especially those who lived alone, to have others to pray with. So we began televising live Holy Hours with prayers and talking about the Lord.”
Father Joseph adds that he prays “this program, packed with spiritual gems, will help you to live with Jesus in your heart.” Indeed, a preview of the first show promises the series will be a treasure trove of spiritual gems.
In each weekly show, assembled from those heartfelt teaching moments during the 1980s Holy Hours, Mother Angelica touches hearts and stirs souls because she speaks from the heart, which makes all the difference. She deeply believed and lived what she tells everyone about the Lord and the faith. That’s why her messages are so vibrantly alive and continue to touch so many people.
The first show in the series proves another point about why Mother’s teachings are so effective and have touched countless hearts: It’s as if Mother is looking directly at viewers, as if they are in the chair opposite her or sitting across a small table — maybe set with a cup of her favorite tea to enjoy — as she speaks from the heart about Jesus, the spiritual life and God’s love, as if you were the only person in the room. And for her, you are: Mother Angelica says as much in the opening show.
First Episode: ‘This Is Our Hope’
The first episode consists of parts from two late-1980s Holy Hours. As it was originally broadcast on Thursday of Easter Week, Mother Angelica starts by discussing how the apostles were “so excited because the Lord is risen. You and I should be just as excited; even as we make our Holy Hour and even as we pray to the Lord … we have to have that joy in our heart and in our mind because St. Paul said if he is not risen our faith would be useless. But he is risen. And he is risen in our hearts — that’s the important thing.”
She gives strong encouragement and hope in this valley of tears:
“We have a Lord who is risen to look up to. And I know that we, too, shall be risen one day, and before that we shall be in his kingdom. And in that Kingdom there are no tears, no pain; everyone will love you, and you will love everyone. There will be joy and knowledge. … As Christians, we have something to look forward to and Someone to look forward to. And that’s the joy of this week.”
As she also says in the first show:
“The things we don’t understand, the misunderstandings in our life, the heartaches, the physical pain, the mental pain, the spiritual pain, the pain that comes from outside and the pain that comes from deep within — everything the Lord suffered. He said, ‘Look! This is the result. Have hope. This will happen to you. And when you die, you will see me face-to-face.’ This is our hope. The Resurrection is our hope. He kept his promise. … That’s your courage; that’s my courage. It’s in the Lord Jesus. … Say, ‘Lord, let me never forget that my whole life, even my faults and my sins, will be used by you for my good somehow. And that one day all of these shackles of weakness will fall off me like the scales of a fish, and I, too, shall rise.’”
And with firm faith she continues: We “can rise this moment from our self, the selfish person within me … the unforgiving person, the angry person, the frustrated person, the person who is impatient. Whatever we are, he has said to us, ‘I am with him. Look up.’ ‘This is the day the Lord has made,’ and you and I shall also have that day. That gives my pain meaning. … He is among us, he is within us, and now, with the Eucharist, he is always with us. He never, never leaves us. … He wants to be risen in your life.”
The second part of this series’ opening show focuses on Pentecost and gifts of the Holy Spirit. In one instance, Mother opens her Bible resting on her lap and turns to 1 Corinthians 12.
“Here, St. Paul talks about these marvelous gifts. Marvelous gifts that everyone could have,” she emphasizes. “You can have them, your children could have them; I could have them … everybody. … The Lord doesn’t exclude anyone.”
Beautifully and convincingly, she tells every viewer about great things they can do. “The greatest thing in the world is to save a soul. ... If you save a soul, you save your own. The greatest thing in the world is to give your entire will over to God. The greatest talent in the world is to see yourself, in all your misery and sin and weaknesses, and say, ‘Lord, Thank you. I love you.’ The greatest thing is to see yourself and not become disheartened or discouraged but keep your eyes on Jesus. The greatest thing is when you can forgive your neighbor after a terrible hurt. The greatest thing is to be holy and compassionate as God is holy and compassionate.”
Mother Angelica also speaks of “a great gift: the gift of awe.”
EWTN’s foundress ends the first segment with a beautiful prayer from the heart:
“Lift me up. Teach me how to pray and how to love without any kind of compromising, without counting the cost. Teach me, Lord, how to rise above myself, that I may be you to my neighbor.”
At the end of the first show, Father Joseph says, “We hope that this program will fulfill Mother Angelica’s desire to be a spiritual lift for you, our family, and will help you to pray from the depths of your heart, ever closer to the heart of Jesus.”
From the Heart With Mother Angelica premieres Sept. 8. The series will broadcast on Thursday mornings at 10:30am Eastern and repeat on Saturday morning at 5am, running weekly through Dec. 31.
In the episode titled “Knowing Jesus, Source of Hope and Love,” Mother Angelica shows how we need to trust more deeply in him for our journey to heaven. In “The Lord Teaches Us to Pray With Faith and Hope,” Mother explains how Jesus taught his disciples to pray with persistent faith and hope. In “The Beatitudes of Our Lord,” she teaches how serenity of soul is found by persevering in praying and striving to live out what Jesus taught.
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