Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

10/20/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

American-born nun lived and worked in Tijuana prison, founded religious order.

Mother Antonia Brenner has died after spending three decades caring for prisoners in an infamous Tijuana prison where she worked to mend lives. The Catholic nun was 86 and lived a Beverly Hills life before becoming a nun.

Mother Antonia Brenner.

Mother Antonia Brenner.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

10/20/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Living Faith

Keywords: Mother Antonia Brenner, nun, Tiajuana, Mexican prison, La Mesa, Eudist Servants Of The Eleventh Hour


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Mother Antonia Brenner, 86, passed away on Thursday after a period of declining health. She died of natural causes according to her religious order in Tijuana. Her sisters cared for her in her last days.

Brenner was born in 1926 as Mary Clarke, the daughter of Irish immigrants. Her family ran an office supply business in Los Angeles and became wealthy. She enjoyed a wealthy childhood and lived next to movie stars. Eventually, she married and had seven children.

Brenner's life changed in 1977 after her children were grown and she went through a second, painful divorce from her husband. Following the divorce, she moved out of her home in Ventura, gave away all her nice clothes and possessions, and moved to Tijuana where she started working --and living, at the La Mesa prison. She already knew of the prison because she had donated money to the facility several times in the past.

Mexican prisons often rely on outside support to provide for inmates.

Brenner once told the LA Times in an interview, "Something happened to me when I saw men behind bars. When I left, I thought a lot about the men. When it was cold, I wondered if the men were warm; when it was raining, if they had shelter. I wondered if they had medicine and how their families were doing. You know, when I returned to the prison to live, I felt as if I'd come home."

Brenner did not have a comfortable life. As any prisoner, she lived in a 10x10 cell and ate the same food as the inmates. She even lined up for morning roll call.

She then spent her days walking among the inmates, providing for their needs. She showed great compassion but lectured the inmates about the victims of their crimes. She once said in a Times interview, "They have to accept that they're wrong. They have to see the consequences. They have to feel the agony. ... But I do love them dearly."

Prison staff referred to her as an "angel" and inmates called her "mama."

Brenner funded her work by collecting donations from throughout Southern California. She would also visit her family, taking joy in her many children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.

In the late 1990s, Sister Brenner established a religious order known as the Eudist Servants of the Eleventh Hour. Her Archbishop said she had the qualities of a saint. Mexican authorities named the street outside of the prison after her.

She is survived by her seven children and her religious order, The Eudist Servants Of The Eleventh Hour is an association of the faithful whose members are sisters who are mature women who love Jesus and want to follow Him by serving the poor and the needy." Women who join the congregation are between the ages of 45 and 60. They continue to serve the La Mesa prison facility.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for July 2015
Universal:
That political responsibility may be lived at all levels as a high form of charity.
Evangelization: That, amid social inequalities, Latin American Christians may bear witness to love for the poor and contribute to a more fraternal society.



Comments


More Living Faith

Pope Francis warns of 'genocide' as Christian Persecution increases globally Watch

Image of

By Nikky Andres (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Christians all over the world are suffering from increasing prejudice and persecution. It is no secret that Islamic extremism and repressive governments are trying hard to perpetuate the oppression of Christianity. Pope Francis has been moved to warn of "a form of ... continue reading


Catholic priest who blessed atomic bomb crews -- and his conversion

Image of

By Tony Magliano

Seventy years ago, on August 6, 1945, the single most destructive weapon ever unleashed upon human beings and the environment - the atomic bomb - was dropped by an American B-29 bomber on the Japanese city of Hiroshima, killing approximately 80,000 people. Three days ... continue reading


'Let Jesus satisfy your hunger for God': Pope Francis encourages people to make offers to God Watch

Image of Pope Francis reflected on the Sunday reading from the Gospel of John in which a vast crowd follows Jesus, but lacks enough food to eat.

By CNA/EWTN News

Jesus Christ's miraculous multiplication of the loaves shows that he offers "fullness of life for hungry man," Pope Francis said Sunday. He encouraged everyone to offer what little they have to God so that God can multiply their gifts and good deeds. Vatican ... continue reading


What to wear to church: What's more important, physical or inner beauty? Watch

Image of

By Hannah Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Wearing your best outfit or putting on a little makeup in preparation for Church isn't too looked down upon. A leading Christian writer shared with Crosswalk.com what she has realized over years of church participation. Although she loves beautiful clothes and make-up, ... continue reading


'Nothing can separate me from the love of God': The first American Ebola patient shares his profound realization on deathbed Watch

Image of

By Atarah Haely (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

He was the first American who contracted the deadly Ebola virus - fearful and sick, Dr. Kent Brantly came to realize something important for Christians and their relationship with God. Amid the pain and moments of uncertainty, from being diagnosed positive with ... continue reading


J. Matt Barber: The Meaning of Life

Image of Matt Barber is founder and editor-in chief of BarbWire.com. He is an author, columnist, cultural analyst and an attorney concentrating in constitutional law.

By J. Matt Barber

So this was rock bottom. The day, which yet again wore into night with fast food and old Bonanza reruns, would end like all the rest. Where were my car keys? As I searched in preparation for another trip to the liquor store, I made my way to my bedroom and opened ... continue reading


'There is no hope, no life, no hope for an end': 'Donor fatigue' setting in among those helping Christians in Middle East fleeing ISIS Watch

Image of Refugees now realize that they will be unable to return to their homes in Iraq or Syria.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

With no end in sight, "donor fatigue" is setting in for those trying to help Middle Eastern Christians fleeing ISIS. There appears to be no solutions, only increasing refugees and more need. The refugees' situation is only getting worse. Refugees now realize ... continue reading


Giant cross at veteran memorial to stay standing with game-changing agreement made Watch

Image of

By Atarah Haely (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Legal battle over the issue of a giant cross standing over a veterans' memorial has been a long and tedious fight, but an agreement may now put it all to rest, keeping the monument on the land. Atheists and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) have filed legal ... continue reading


A MIRACLE? Virgin Mary painting caught on tape moving lips along with the Lord's Prayer (VIDEO) Watch

Image of

By Nikky Andres (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The lips on a painted image of the Virgin Mary, on display at the St. Charbels Church in New South Wales, Australia, were reportedly witnessed moving along with the reading of the Lord's Prayer. MUNTINLUPA, PHILIPPINES (Catholic Online) - The video featuring the Virgin ... continue reading


Many accuse Pope Francis of socialist, even communist leanings - is he? Watch

Image of The gift of a

By CNA/EWTN News

Pope Francis' recent trip to Latin America has rekindled questions about whether he endorses socialism, or even communism. Vatican City (CNA/EWTN News) - The gift of a "communist crucifix" from Bolivia's president Evo Morales and uncertainty over the Pope's response ... continue reading


All Living Faith News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Leviticus 25:1, 8-17
1 Yahweh spoke to Moses on Mount Sinai and ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 67:2-3, 5, 7-8
2 Then the earth will acknowledge your ways, and all ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 14:1-12
1 At that time Herod the tetrarch heard about the ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for August 1st, 2015 Image

St. Alphonsus Marie Liguori
August 1: Bishop, Doctor of the Church, and the founder of the ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter