I would like you to meet my good friend. She’s actually the good friend of all Ursulines. She’s over 500 years old, but very young at heart, and closer to her Ursuline daughters than ever! Her name is Angela Merici. She is the woman who founded the Ursulines, known in her day as the Company of St. Ursula.

Angela established the Company of St. Ursula when she was in her mid-sixties. Unlike other famous founders and foundresses, she began her community, not in the midst of a midlife crisis, but in the wisdom and serenity of old age.

Angela Merici left writings for her daughters that revealed her heart and her inspiration to us. The writings she left us contain her Counsels, her Rule, and her Legacy. Here is one passage from her Fifth Counsel, which was addressed to the leadership or guardians of the community and how they should encourage their sisters: “Let them have Jesus Christ as their only treasure, for there will also be love, which is to be sought not only in this world but above…as the Apostle (Paul) says: If you were raised with Christ, seek things which are above, not things of the earth.” Truly these words can be for anyone seeking to be a disciple of Jesus Christ, Ursuline or not!

There is much more about St. Angela to learn. I encourage you to get to know her. She is a compassionate friend and guide. You can pray to her with confidence. For example, she was known in her day as a peacemaker and reconciler. Do you have some sort of conflict with another or in your family? Pray for her intercession. Angela’s community became known as women dedicated to education. Are you struggling with something at school? Are you by necessity a home schooler to your children? Pray to Angela for help and guidance.

There is much more about St. Angela to be discovered. You can go to the Internet and do an online search, but if you do, search for the Company of St. Ursula. You will find better and more current research about St. Angela and her company that way. Otherwise, you may run into older accounts about Angela that are less accurate. Happy searching! Blessings to you and your loved ones. St. Angela, pray for us!

Sister Elaine Berkopec