[display_podcast]  This podcast made available from Vatican Radio

In this podcast her friend and former pastor, Fr. Leo Masburg who describes her private battle with “the darkness…”


video source – romereports.com

“May the example of Mother Teresa increase your love of the Lord and inspire ever greater service to the needy”.
John Paul II, Beatification of Mother Teresa, October 19, 2003

Mother Teresa’s real name was Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu. She was born on August 26th, 1910 in Skopje, previously part of Albania and today the capital of the Republic of Macedonia.

At age 18 she entered the convent and joined the Sisters of Loreto, in Ireland, where she took the name Teresa, honouring Saints Teresa of Avila and St. Therese of Lisieux. In 1929 she went to India where she made her first vows. She taught at Saint Mary’s high school in Calcutta and later became the director.

On September 10th, 1946, while she attending spiritual exercises, she received what she described as “the call within a call.”

That marked a new chapter in her service, when she brought home a patient dying of tuberculosis, began serving children, the elderly and the poor people living on the streets.

On October 7th, 1950, she started the a new religious congregation – the Missionary Sisters of Charity. The habit they would wear would consist of a white sari with blue stripes. The first members to join her new group were her own students.

The ministry started by Mother Teresa spread throughout the world. Her houses welcome and serve people of all backgrounds and religions. She opened a new house in Venezuela, then in Rome and Tanzania, and even a house in each of the former communist countries. For Mother Teresa it was not important what was done, as much as the love which was at the heart of their work.

And her tireless work for the poor always went hand in hand with an intense life of prayer.

“The community that follows in her steps, supposed always as the first condition of one foundation, the presence of a tabernacle. Without the presence of the love of God who gives himself, it would not have been possible to realize that apostolate. It would not have been possible to live in that abandonment to self.”
Benedict XVI, End of Year for Priest June 10, 2010

The notoriety of Mother Teresa and her ministry spread throughout the world. In 1979 she received the Nobel Peace Prize. Her speech also consisted of a strong appeal against abortion. She offered to take care of any child to save him or her from abortion.

Mother Teresa also experienced great challenges. Since she founded her order she went through what she called the ‘dark night of the soul’ – an experience in which God seems far away. But she never spoke about her spiritual trials and she continued her daily service to society’s most abandoned until the day of her death on September 5, 1997.

John Paul II, a great friend and admirer of Mother Teresa, beatified her in record time, just six years after her death. Thousands of people devoted to Blessed Teresa of Calcutta strive to follower her model of holiness in the service of God and one another.