Mother Teresa, whose real name was Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu, was born
August 26, 1910,
Skopje, the capital city of the Republic of Macedonia. While growing up, she was impressed
the missionary work of the Sisters of Loreto, who taught English to children
India and, at the age of 18, became a student
their abbey in Ireland. She took the first steps to becoming a nun
1928, at which time she also changed her name to Sister Teresa. The following year, she was sent to Calcutta, India, to teach at St. Mary's High School, a Catholic institute for girls. Although her students came from wealthy families, St. Mary's was located close
some very poor neighbourhoods. Sister Teresa was appalled by conditions
there, so, in 1947, she obtained the Pope's permission to leave her convent and established a school to help the area's underprivileged. Then, in 1950, she organized the order of the Missionaries of Charity, which she led until her death almost fifty years later.
Under Mother Teresa's guidance, the Missionaries of Charity offered free care services, including health care, food and education to Calcutta's needy. Soon, she opened centres for the elderly, the blind and the physically handicapped. A truly remarkable lady, she became known as the "Saint of the Gutters", and received numerous awards for her humanitarian efforts. Both India and America, for instance, awarded her their highest civilian honours. Moreover, she became the subject of a best selling biography by Malcolm Muggeridge, "Something Beautiful for God" and,
1979, received the Nobel Peace Prize.
Like all people in the public eye, Mother Teresa was not without her critics. Her pro-life views, for example, often put her at odds with those who favoured a woman's right to have an abortion. However, even her critics couldn't deny the goodness of her heart or her dedication to the less fortunate of this world. By the time of her death
Sept. 5, 1997, her Missionaries of Charity were operating 610 missions
Source: "Mother Teresa" Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. December 2008. Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mother_Teresa