Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Remembering Mother Teresa

I remember hearing about the news of Mother Teresa's demise. It was a few days after Diana died. I remember thinking how much fuss the world was making over Diana's death. No doubt that she did some good, using her influence and name to highlight several causes, but her life, I felt, was wasted in wanton living, like the Prodigal Son after he left the Father's house. Perhaps, had she lived longer, a more public repentance and conversion would have taken place and how much good she could have done we would never know.

The littlest Sister

But Mother Teresa's death received a bit less attention. But in the decades to come, the good that she has done and the seeds of faith she planted and the Missionaries she founded would continue to carry on her name and her work, long after the world forgets the glamorous Diana.

From NewKerala:

Nation remembers Mother Teresa on her eleventh death anniversary

Prayers and floral tributes were offered at the grave of the Mother inside Mother House.

Hundreds of people from all walks of life and of all faiths joined the nuns of the Charity for a special morning mass.
The Superior General of the Missionaries of Charity, Sister Nirmala, said nuns and Teresa's followers are through prayer thanking God for selfless service of the 'Saint of Gutters' and for peace in the world's troubled spots.

"We are observing today through prayer, through sacrifice, thanking God for the gift of mother's life of holiness, and asking her to bless us and help us also to become holy and very specially from her for peace, peace in Orissa and peace in all the troubled areas of the world," said Sister Nirmala.

Mother Teresa, born as Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu in Albanian, had made Kolkata her home and dedicated her life to the service of poor, aged and infirm people and destitute children.

After the beatification of Mother Teresa, the Roman Catholic Church had declared September 5, the day Mother left her earthly abode, as Feast Day - a day for joy and celebration.

The Pope beatified the Nobel laureate in October 2003, paving the way for her canonization to be declared a saint.

She qualified for beatification after Vatican officials acknowledged that she was responsible for a miracle in which an Indian woman was cured of stomach cancer through her intervention.

Mother Teresa, who died on September 5, 1997, at the age of 87, was popularly known as the "Saint of the Gutter" for her extraordinary love and dedication to the poor, the homeless and the diseased.

She came to India in 1929 at the age of 18 and took up teaching and became an Indian citizen in 1948. The nun started working in slums and later set up her Missionaries of Charity, which was approved by the Vatican in 1950. The organisation now runs over 500 charity homes in over 100 countries.

Mother Teresa received several national and international awards for social service during her lifetime. They include the Magsaysay Award in 1962, the Pope John XXIII Peace Prize in 1971, the John F. Kennedy International Award in 1971 and the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979.

--- ANI

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