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The Tom Coughlin Few People Know View Comments
By James Breig

Coach Tom Coughlin takes the field for the Giants game against the Carolina Panthers in week three of this past season. The Giants won the game 36-7.
BY GUIDING the New York Giants to two recent Super Bowl victories (2008 and 2012), Tom Coughlin has solidified his position in the ranks of elite pro football coaches. He also joined another fraternity: devout Catholics who have been outstanding gridiron leaders and two-time Super Bowl champions. Others on that list include the legendary Vince Lombardi of the Green Bay Packers, who said he was strengthened by daily Communion, and Don Shula of the Miami Dolphins, who wrote: “Attending Mass and looking to God for guidance aren’t just habits for me. They matter deeply to me.”
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James Breig has written articles for many Catholic publications, including this one. He is the author of Searching for Sgt. Bailey: Saluting an Ordinary Soldier of World War II (Park Chase Press, Baltimore).

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Angela Merici: Angela has the double distinction of founding the first teaching congregation of women in the Church and what is now called a “secular institute” of religious women. 
<p>As a young woman she became a member of the Third Order of St. Francis (now known as the Secular Franciscan Order), and lived a life of great austerity, wishing, like St. Francis, to own nothing, not even a bed. Early in life she was appalled at the ignorance among poorer children, whose parents could not or would not teach them the elements of religion. Angela’s charming manner and good looks complemented her natural qualities of leadership. Others joined her in giving regular instruction to the little girls of their neighborhood. </p><p>She was invited to live with a family in Brescia (where, she had been told in a vision, she would one day found a religious community). Her work continued and became well known. She became the center of a group of people with similar ideals. </p><p>She eagerly took the opportunity for a trip to the Holy Land. When they had gotten as far as Crete, she was struck with blindness. Her friends wanted to return home, but she insisted on going through with the pilgrimage, and visited the sacred shrines with as much devotion and enthusiasm as if she had her sight. On the way back, while praying before a crucifix, her sight was restored at the same place where it had been lost. </p><p>At 57, she organized a group of 12 girls to help her in catechetical work. Four years later the group had increased to 28. She formed them into the Company of St. Ursula (patroness of medieval universities and venerated as a leader of women) for the purpose of re-Christianizing family life through solid Christian education of future wives and mothers. The members continued to live at home, had no special habit and took no formal vows, though the early Rule prescribed the practice of virginity, poverty and obedience. The idea of a teaching congregation of women was new and took time to develop. The community thus existed as a “secular institute” until some years after Angela’s death.</p> American Catholic Blog I hear far more people discuss the presence of evil in their lives than they do the supreme power of grace. God is bigger than evil!

 
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