At age 8, she had lost her father. Some suspect that he was murdered by political enemies.

Being fatherless, she grew up very close to her mother. A devout Catholic, her mother taught Mother Teresa the importance of charity.

This led Mother Teresa to decide there and then to devote her life to religion by joining an order of sisters devote to education.

After spending 20 years teaching in relative comfort, she got “a call within a call” compelling her to leave the convent and live among the poorest of the poor.

Her first year in the Calcutta slums was challenging. She had to beg for food alongside those she was trying to help and got pelted with rocks for her religious beliefs. She considered returning home but was determined to carry on.

Soon, her reputation began to grow as she opened hospices for orphans and the dying. She became known for her sacrifice, fearlessness and tenacity.

According to Life Stories, Mother Teresa showed up at the house of the mayor of San Francisco in the middle of the night, asking to turn a vacant building into a homeless shelter. When the mayor promised to look into it in the morning, Mother Teresa responded: “The work of God cannot wait until tomorrow morning.”

When she was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, Mother Teresa insisted that the traditional banquet be canceled so that the money could be used to help the poor instead.

While doing her mission, she was stricken with pneumonia, malaria and heart disease. But these health concerns never slowed her down.

Mother Teresa continued working and advocating for the world’s poorest until her death in 1997.

From 13 sisters, Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity has grown to over 5,000 serving in more than 130 countries.

This was proof of what she once said: “I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.”

Mother Teresa: The Blue and White Saint

Today, we remember Mother Teresa on her 21st death anniversary. Throughout her lifetime, she set up facilities to support those dying with HIV, leprosy and tuberculosis and lived to wholeheartedly serve the poorest of the poor for as long as she lived. Upon receiving a Nobel Peace Prize for her work , she humbly stated, "I am unworthy". This is her story.

Posted by Life Stories on Wednesday, September 5, 2018

 

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