Mother Teresa

 

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Aug 27, 1910 – Sep 5 1997

Nun, Missionary, Teacher, Humanitarian, Nurse, Founder of Worldwide Religious Order

Albanian, Indian

“Being unwanted, unloved, uncared for, forgotten by everybody, I think that is a much greater hunger, a much greater poverty than the person who has nothing to eat.”

“I am a little pencil in the hand of a writing God who is sending a love letter to the world.”

An Indian woman claimed a medallion with Mother Teresa’s image on it cured a tumor in her abdomen. This is the documented miracle that led to Mother Teresa’s beautification.

Mother Teresa received the Nobel peace prize when she was 69. Helping the poor and needy had always been a part of her life. She was raised with the Albanian tradition of besa, or hospitality, taught in her home. Her family saw the poor as having a claim on their help, and they generously gave to anyone who came to their door. Because of her desires to help others, at 18, Agnes applied and was admitted into The Sisters of Loreto, a Catholic religious order that ran a machine in Calcutta, India. There she learned English, Hindi and Bengali. Her named was changed to Sister and then to Mother Teresa. Nuns in her order were not allowed outside the convent after taking their vows, but, after seeing the conditions of those living in the streets of Calcutta, Mother Teresa received permission to work in the slums amongst the poorest of the poor. She was very intelligent, but her most remarkable trait was her love for the dying, outcast and unwanted. The streets of Calcutta were teeming with abandoned and orphaned children, the dying and the leprous. She founded The Missionaries of Charity, whose members live among those they serve in complete poverty. Because hospitals wouldn’t admit the terminally ill, many numbers just stopped in the streets alone and uncared for. Mother Teresa provided shelters where the lepers and dying could be cared for and where they could stop in dignity. She began orphanages for the many abandoned children. In 1967, The Missionaries of Charity became an international order and now helps the needy in nearly 30 countries.