Last Updated on August 26, 2023 by kavin
In a world often marred by self-interest and materialism, the life of Mother Teresa shines as a beacon of selflessness, compassion, and unwavering dedication. Her legacy continues to inspire and uplift millions even after her passing. From her early years to the establishment of the Missionaries of Charity and the subsequent recognition, Mother Teresa’s journey is one of true significance and impact.
Early Life and Call to Service
Born as Anjezë Gonxhe Bojaxhiu on August 26, 1910, in Skopje, modern-day North Macedonia, Mother Teresa’s journey towards becoming a symbol of humanitarianism was ignited at an early age. Her exposure to the struggles of the less fortunate while growing up laid the foundation for her deep empathy and commitment to serve humanity.
Answering the Call: The Missionaries of Charity
It was in 1928 that Mother Teresa felt a “call within a call,” a divine summons to leave her teaching profession and devote herself fully to the service of the poorest of the poor. In 1948, she established the Missionaries of Charity, an order dedicated to helping those living on the fringes of society. The iconic blue-bordered sari became a symbol of her selfless commitment.
A Lifetime of Service
Mother Teresa’s work was not confined to her homeland. She spread her mission across continents, providing aid to the destitute, sick, and orphaned. The Missionaries of Charity expanded rapidly, establishing homes for the dying, lepers, and children in need. Her tireless efforts garnered international attention and admiration, earning her the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979.
The Legacy Lives On: Mother Teresa’s Death and Beyond
On September 5, 1997, the world mourned the loss of a true humanitarian as Mother Teresa passed away. Her death marked the end of an era, but her legacy continued to thrive. In 2017, the Mother Teresa Women’s University was established in Kodaikanal, India, to empower women through education—a testament to her enduring influence.
Capturing the Essence: Mother Teresa in Art and Image
Throughout her life, Mother Teresa’s unwavering devotion and kindness were captured in various forms. From photographs that depicted her comforting the sick to intricate drawings that portrayed her gentle yet determined spirit, artists sought to encapsulate the essence of her being. These artistic creations serve as reminders of her impactful journey.
Mother Teresa Biography
By heritage, I am Albanian. By citizenship, an Indian. By faith, I am a Catholic nun. In terms of my calling, I am part of the global domain. As far as my heart is concerned, it belongs completely to the Heart of Jesus.
In stature, modest; in faith, unshakable; Mother Teresa of Calcutta bore the responsibility of conveying God’s yearning love for humanity, particularly for the most destitute among us. “The world still rests in God’s affection, and He designates you and me to embody His love and compassion towards the indigent,” she pronounced. Her spirit emanated Christ’s radiance, ablaze with adoration for Him and ablaze with a singular aspiration: to quench His thirst for devotion and for souls.
This radiant emissary of God’s affection took her first breath on 26 August 1910 in Skopje, a city ensconced at the crossroads of Balkan history. Born to Nikola and Drane Bojaxhiu, the youngest progeny, she was baptized Gonxha Agnes, received the sacrament of First Communion at a tender five and a half, and was confirmed in November 1916. From the very day of her inaugural Holy Communion, a fervor for souls resonated within her. The abrupt demise of her father when Gonxha was scarcely eight cast the family into financial strife. Drane, though, reared her offspring with a judicious and affectionate hand, exerting a profound sway on her daughter’s disposition and her divine summons. Gonxha’s spiritual education garnered further enrichment from the vibrant Jesuit parish of the Sacred Heart, wherein her involvement was substantial.
At eighteen, animated by an aspiration to serve as a missionary, Gonxha bid adieu to her familial abode in September 1928 to join the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary, commonly known as the Sisters of Loreto, located in Ireland. It was here that she embraced the moniker Sister Mary Teresa, an homage to St. Thérèse of Lisieux. December saw her embarking on a journey to India, her arrival in Calcutta transpiring on 6 January 1929. Following her First Profession of Vows in May 1931, Sister Teresa found her place in the Loreto Entally community in Calcutta, wherein she undertook teaching duties at St. Mary’s School for young girls. On the 24th of May, 1937, Sister Teresa formalized her commitment through the Final Profession of Vows, a moment wherein she declared herself as the “bride of Jesus” for “eternity.” Thereafter, she was addressed as Mother Teresa. Her instructional endeavors at St. Mary’s persisted, and in 1944, she ascended to the role of the institution’s principal. Revered for her benevolence, selflessness, and valor, coupled with her indefatigable industry and an innate aptitude for organization, she lived out her consecration to Jesus, amid her comrades, adorned with fidelity and elation.
During the voyage from Calcutta to Darjeeling for her annual retreat on 10 September 1946, a momentous occasion occurred for Mother Teresa. It was an “inspiration,” an internal summons that she would never fully elucidate, wherein Jesus’ yearning for love and souls seized her heart. The yearning to satiate His thirst transformed into the impetus driving her existence. Over the ensuing weeks and months, through interior locutions and visions, Jesus divulged to her His heart’s yearning for “lovers of love” who would “radiate His affection onto souls.” “Come, share in My luminance,” He implored her. “I cannot embark on this journey alone.” He unveiled His distress over the disregard the destitute encountered, His grief at their unfamiliarity with Him, and His yearning for their love. He beckoned Mother Teresa to establish a religious community, Missionaries of Charity, consecrated to serving the most indigent among the indigent. The endeavor was preceded by almost two years of testing and discernment. Eventually, on the 17th of August, 1948, she donned, for the first time, a white sari bordered in blue, traversing the threshold of her cherished Loreto convent to step into the realm of the destitute.
After a brief course with the Medical Mission Sisters in Patna, Mother Teresa journeyed back to Calcutta, finding provisional accommodation with the Little Sisters of the Poor. On the 21st of December, she forayed into the slums for the first time. She ventured into households, tending to the sores of some children, nurturing an ailing elderly man on the street, and caring for a famished woman grappling with tuberculosis. She initiated each day in communion with Jesus in the Eucharist, subsequently venturing out with a rosary in hand, to seek and serve Him within “the forsaken, the uncherished, the unattended.” After a span, her former pupils began to join her, one by one.
On the 7th of October, 1950, the nascent congregation of the Missionaries of Charity obtained official recognition in the Archdiocese of Calcutta. During the early 1960s, Mother Teresa initiated the dispatch of her Sisters to diverse corners of India. In February 1965, Pope Paul VI bestowed the Decree of Praise upon the Congregation, bolstering her resolve to establish an outpost in Venezuela. This led to subsequent foundations in Rome, Tanzania, and ultimately, every inhabited continent. The 1980s and 1990s marked a period of expansion into almost every communist nation, including the erstwhile Soviet Union, Albania, and Cuba.
_To cater more holistically to the exigencies of the destitute, Mother Teresa inaugurated the Missionaries of Charity Brothers in 1963, the contemplative branch of the Sisters in 1976, the Contemplative Brothers in 1979, and the Missionaries of Charity Fathers in 1984. Her inspiration, however, extended beyond those called to religious vocations. She formed the Co-Workers of Mother Teresa and the Sick and Suffering Co-Workers, encompassing individuals from diverse faiths and nationalities who embraced her ethos of prayer, simplicity, sacrifice, and her ministry of unassuming love.
Download Mother Teresa Photo
If you’re seeking to download photos of Mother Teresa, there are several reliable sources where you can find a collection of her images. Reputable websites like Wikimedia Commons, Getty Images, and Shutterstock offer a variety of photographs capturing different aspects of Mother Teresa’s life, from her charitable work to her moments of reflection. Additionally, you can explore official websites related to her legacy, such as the Missionaries of Charity website, which often provides access to high-quality images for educational and inspirational purposes. Always ensure that you are using these images respectfully and within the guidelines set by the respective platforms.
Conclusion: A Life That Transcends Time
Mother Teresa’s life story is a testament to the transformative power of empathy and action. Her humility, compassion, and dedication to the service of humanity have left an indelible mark on the world. As we reflect on her legacy—depicted in photographs, drawings, and the Mother Teresa Women’s University—we are reminded that even in a world rife with challenges, one individual’s commitment can spark a flame of hope that continues to burn bright.