Women and Religion - Biographies By Last Name
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Angelica, Mary

Mother Angelica (1923-2016) is the founder of the Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN), the world’s largest religious broadcaster.

Bailey, Alice

Alice Bailey (1880-1949) is considered by many to be the mother of New Age, popularizing the term in writings about her own mystical movement.

Bakker, Tammy Faye

Tammy Faye Bakker (1942-2007) was a Christian television celebrity with her husband, Jim Bakker, and remained in the public spotlight even after their empire crumbled.

Bradstreet, Anne

Anne Bradstreet (1612-1672) was one of early America's first noteworthy poets.

Buck, Pearl S.

Pearl Buck (1892-1973) was an award-winning novelist, whose liberal views on theology and Presbyterian missions drew criticism from conservative Presbyterians.

Cabrini, Frances Xavier

Frances Xavier Cabrini (1850-1917) was the first American citizen to be named a saint by the Catholic Church.

Crosby, Frances "Fanny"

Fanny Crosby (1820-1915) wrote thousands of famous hymns, including "Blessed Assurance," "Jesus Keep Me Near the Cross," and "To God Be the Glory."

Daly, Mary

Mary Daly (1928-2010) was a radical feminist theologian at Boston College who viewed traditional (male) depictions of the Christian God as oppressive toward women.

Day, Dorothy

Dorothy Day (1897-1980) was a Catholic activist, known for co-founding the Catholic Worker movement, leading anti-war and anti-nuclear proliferation movements, and promoting assistance to the poor.

Drexel, Katharine

Katharine Drexel (1858-1955) founded the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament, a religious order devoted to the education and assistance to racial minorities in America.

Eddy, Mary Baker

Mary Baker Eddy (1821-1910) founded the Christian Science movement.

Harkness, Georgia

Georgia Harkness (1891-1974) was one of the first influential female theologians in the United States.

Hutchinson, Anne

Anne Hutchinson's (1591-1643) preaching and unorthodox theology posed a threat to colonial authority in Massachusetts. She fled to Rhode Island after being excommunicated.

Lee, Jarena

Jarena Lee (1783-1855) was one of the first black female preachers in America.

McPherson, Aimee Semple

American evangelist and gifted preacher, Aimee Semple McPherson (1890-1944) was the founder of the International Church of the Foursquare Gospel, a Pentecostal denomination.

Mears, Henrietta

Henrietta Mears (1890-1963) reignited the popularity of Sunday schools through her high quality teaching methods and publications.

Meyer, Joyce

Prosperity gospel evangelist Joyce Meyer (1943-present) leads one of the largest ministries in the world, Joyce Meyer Ministries, headquartered in Fenton, Mo.

Moon, Charlotte "Lottie"

Charlotte "Lottie" Moon (1840-1912) was a Southern Baptist missionary known for her evangelistic work in China.

O'Connor, Flannery

The American writer Flannery O'Connor (1925-1964) depicted fictional Southern characters confronting grace in depressing circumstances.

O'Hair, Madalyn Murray

Madalyn Murray O’Hair (1919-1995) was instrumental in banning Bible readings in public schools and founded one of the largest organizations of atheists in America.

Palmer, Phoebe

Phoebe Palmer (1807-1874) is considered the founder of the Holiness movement, initiating Spirit-led Bible meetings that linked Wesleyan revivalism with modern Pentecostalism.

Prophet, Elizabeth Clare

Elizabeth Clare Prophet (1939-2009) established the Church Universal and Triumphant in 1974 as a liturgical craft for the teachings of the Ascended Masters.

Schlafly, Phyllis

Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) was a conservative Catholic activist who strengthened the pro-life and religious right movements.

Seton, Elizabeth Ann

Elizabeth Ann Seton (1774-1821) founded the Sisters of Charity of St. Joseph and was an early promoter of parochial school and Catholic women's education.

Smith, Hannah Whitall

American evangelist Hannah Whitall Smith (1832-1911) was an important speaker and writer in both the Holiness and Temperance movements.

Stanton, Elizabeth Cady

Elizabeth Cady Stanton (1815-1902) was a women’s rights advocate who pioneered feminist theology through her controversial biblical commentary known as the The Woman’s Bible.

Tekakwitha, Kateri

Kateri Tekakwitha (1656-1680) was a Native American Catholic, known for her asceticism and chastity. She was canonized by Pope Benedict XVI in 2012.

Tubman, Harriet

Harriet Tubman (1820-1913), known as the "Moses of her people," helped more than 300 slaves find freedom through the Underground Railroad.

Wheatley, Phillis

Phillis Wheatley (1753-1784) became the first published African-American female poet. Most of her poetry contained religious themes.

White, Ellen Gould

Ellen Gould White (1827-1915) was the co-founder of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. She promoted Saturday as the Christian Sabbath and advocated biblically-based health initiatives.

Willard, Frances

Frances Willard (1839-1898) was a social activist who promoted temperance, women’s suffrage, labor reform and home-centered family life.

Winfrey, Oprah

Billionaire media icon Oprah Winfrey (1954-present) has become the unofficial guru for millions of Americans seeking spiritual and moral guidance beyond traditional religious affiliation.

Woosley, Louisa

Louisa Woosley (1862-1952) was the first female ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church.


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