TERESA OF CALCUTTA, VIRGIN
(Approved for the Missionaries of Charity)
From the Common of Virgins or Holy Women-Religious
Mother Teresa of Calcutta (Gonxha Agnes Bojaxhiu) was born of Albanian parents in Skopje in 1910. Journeying as a missionary to India she laboured many years as a teacher before hearing the “call within the call” to satiate the thirst of Jesus for love and the salvation of souls by founding the Missionaries of Charity. She experienced a profound union with Jesus in His Passion and dedicated herself to alleviating the suffering of all of God’s children, joyfully serving Jesus “under the distressing disguise of the poorest of the poor.” She became an international symbol of God’s love and a true mother for unwanted and unloved people everywhere. After much suffering she died on September 5, 1997 in Calcutta.
OFFICE OF READINGS, SECOND READING
From the last letter of Mother Teresa, M.C., to the Missionary of Charity Sisters,
dated 5th September 1997.
My dearest Children,
This brings you Mother’s love, prayer and blessing that each one of you may be only all for Jesus through Mary. I know that Mother says often – “Be only all for Jesus through Mary” – but that is because that is all Mother wants for you, all Mother wants from you. If in your heart you are only all for Jesus through Mary, and if you do everything only all for Jesus through Mary, you will be a true Missionary of Charity.
Thank you for all the loving wishes you sent for the Society Feast. We have much to thank God for, especially that He has given us Our Lady’s spirit to be the spirit of our Society. Loving Trust and Total Surrender made Our Lady say “Yes” to the message of the angel, and Cheerfulness made her to run in haste to serve her cousin Elizabeth. That is so much our life – saying “Yes” to Jesus and running in haste to serve Him in the poorest of the poor. Let us keep close to Our Lady and she will make that same spirit grow in each one of us.
September 10th is coming very close. That is another beautiful chance for us to stand near Our Lady, to listen to the Thirst of Jesus and to answer with our whole heart. It is only with Our Lady that we can hear Jesus cry, “I Thirst”, and it is only with Our Lady that we can thank God properly for giving this great gift to our Society. Last year was the Golden Jubilee of Inspiration Day, and I hope that the whole year has been one of thanksgiving. We will never come to the end of the gift that came to Mother for the Society on that day, and so we must never stop thanking for it. Let our gratitude be our strong resolution to quench the Thirst of Jesus by lives of real charity – love for Jesus in prayer, love for Jesus in our Sisters, love for Jesus in the poorest of the poor – nothing else.
And now I have heard that Jesus is giving us one more gift. This year, one hundred years after she went home to Jesus, Holy Father is declaring Little Flower to be a Doctor of the Church. Can you imagine – for doing little things with great love the Church is making her a Doctor, like St. Augustine and the big St. Teresa! It is just like Jesus said in the Gospel to the one who was seated in the lowest place, “Friend, come up higher.” So let us keep very small and follow Little Flower’s way of trust and love and joy, and we will fulfill Mother’s promise to give saints to mother Church.
RESPONSORY Mt. 25:34-35, 40
V/. Come, O blessed of My Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; *for I was hungry and you gave Me food, I was thirsty and you gave Me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed Me.
R/. Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me; *for I was hungry.
God, who called Blessed Teresa, virgin,
to respond to the love of your Son thirsting on the Cross
with outstanding charity to the poorest of the poor,
grant us, we beseech you, by her intercession,
to minister to Christ in our suffering brothers.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ your Son
Who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever