Teresa of Ávila, also known as Saint Teresa of Jesus, was a Spanish noblewoman who later turned into a Carmelite nun. She was posthumously named a Doctor of the Church. She co-established the Discalced Carmelite Order. Her written works include The Interior Castle and her own autobiography.
Edith Stein was a German Jewish philosopher who studied at the University of Freiburg and completed her dissertation on empathy. Always interested in Catholicism, she read the autobiography of the mystic Teresa of Ávila and converted to Christianity, and became a Discalced Carmelite nun. She was killed in the Auschwitz concentration camp and is canonized as a martyr.
Karen Armstrong is a British commentator and author best known for writing books on comparative religion. Her work emphasizes the commonalities of major world religions like the Golden Rule and the importance of compassion. Karen Armstrong has received several prestigious awards, such as the Freedom of Worship Award and the Nayef Al-Rodhan Prize for Global Cultural Understanding.
Italian mathematician Maria Gaetana Agnesi, daughter of an affluent silk trader, was well-versed in a number of languages as a child. Most of her work was regarding algebra, calculus, and the Witch of Agnesi. She was also the first female academic to write a math book and to teach math.
Elaine Pagels is an American historian who serves as a professor at Princeton University. Pagels, who is credited with conducting extensive research into Gnosticism and early Christianity, came up with the influential book The Gnostic Gospels. The book has been named among the 100 best books of the 20th century by Modern Library.
Belgian-born American Conservative Catholic philosopher Alice von Hildebrand had also been a professor at Hunter College for almost 4 decades. She was often critical of gay rights and abortion rights. Though discriminated against in her early career for being a woman, she later criticized feminism, too, and stressed on femininity.
Owing to a spinal ailment, Catherine Booth remained mostly at home as a child. She later founded The Salvation Army, with her Methodist preacher husband William Booth, thus helping the poor and the needy. She refused to believe women couldn’t preach the gospels and wrote the pamphlet Female Ministry.
Evangeline Booth is remembered as the first female general of the Salvation Army, founded by her parents, William Booth and Catherine Mumford. Her beauty and musical skills earned her the nickname White Angel of the Slums. Her efforts ranged from aiding unwed mothers and working women, to organizing fundraisers.
Marta Benavides is a Salvadoran theologian and feminist religious leader. A multi-talented personality, Benavides is also an ordained American Baptist minister, artist, educator, and permaculturist. She is credited with founding an organization called Siglo XXIII, which promotes cultural activities. Marta Benavides is the recipient of several prestigious awards including the Women's World Summit Foundation Prize.