Mother Teresa is known world-wide for her radical care of and service to the outcasts, sick, and poor. She founded the Missionaries of Charity, which has expanded to thousands of people aiding over 130 countries. This charity provides centers for the disabled, elderly, and poor. Mother Teresa won many awards, including the Nobel Peace Prize (1979) and Pope John XXIII Peace Prize (1971).
Mother Teresa was born in 1910 in Macedonia to a devout Catholic family. It is said that her passion for charity was instilled by her mother from a young age. Mother Teresa discovered her calling at age 12 on a religious journey with her church and decided to devote her life to Jesus Christ. At the age of 18, she joined the Sisters of Loreto in Ireland and became a nun.
She then set off to be a teacher to high-school aged girls in India from 1931 to 1948. She was passionate about education as a way out of extreme poverty. Mother Teresa became the principal of this school, and through her generosity and love for others, she was devoted to teaching her students to follow Christ.
In 1946, Mother Teresa experienced a calling from Jesus to leave her teaching career and pursue service to people living in extreme poverty in the slums of Calcutta. Her mission was to make Jesus known and to love and care for the poor in humility. Through the Missionaries of Charity, Mother Teresa founded a leper colony, an orphanage, a nursing home, a family clinic and a string of mobile health clinics.
CENTERED ON CHRIST
Although Mother Teresa sometimes doubted her faith and experienced times of hopelessness, she devoted her entire life to Jesus and following His example to serve others. Her mission was to love and care for those that no one else would.
She knew the calling for her life was from Jesus and declared, “We will be the happiest people in the world if we belong to God, if we place ourselves at his disposal, if we let him use us as he pleases.”
Mother Teresa stated, “The closer we come to Jesus, the better we will know his thirst.” This was the secret to her life and her work. She knew Jesus and sought to live according to His will. This brought His thirst, which she described as “for love, for souls, for you and me.”