As a non-Catholic admirer of Mother Angelica, I was surprised to learn her birth name was ‘Rita Rizzo’. I had just assumed her first name was always Angelica. :o
Can someone briefly explain what the rules or guidelines are for keeping one’s birth name versus getting a new name later in life for Catholic religious leaders?
For example, the local archbishop in Oklahoma City is Archbishop Paul Coakley. He didn’t change his name when he became archbishop. However, when someone becomes pope, they choose a new name, like Pope Francis did. Apparently, Mother Angelica did likewise at some point in her religious life.
Thanks in advance for your help in better understanding this. I find it fascinating but a little confusing.