Profile of Mother Teresa of Kolkata
Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu, popularly known as Mother Theresa, was recently declared a saint by Pope Francs on 4th of October, 2016. A woman known for serving the poor, homeless and destitute. She lived a humble life, dedicating her time in helping the sick putting aside any self interest. Born an Albanian on 26th of august 1910, getting an Indian nationality later on, this article highlights the life and times of St. Teresa of Calcutta.
Works and Achievements
A Nobel peace prize laureate. She helped the poor and destitute people living in the slums of Kolkata. Due to her great effort in serving humanity, she established center for AIDS patients in 1985 and founded Missionary of Charity in Calcutta in 1969. She helped and served people suffering from different diseases and people affected by natural disaster.
Awards won by Saint Theresa
Palma Shri award 1962
Ramon Magsaysay Award 1962
Jawaharlal Nehru Award for International Understanding 1969
Pope John XXIII Peace Prize 1971
Pacem in Terris Award 1976
Balzan Prize 1978
Nobel Peace Prize 1979
Mother Theresa was the youngest child of Nikola and Drane Bojaxhiu. Originally known as Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu. She received her first communion at age five, from childhood she attended prayers and devoted herself in the worship of the Almighty. When she was eight years old, her father died. Drane Bojaxhiu then assumed the dual role of being a mother and a father. Under the influence and guidance of her mother and a priest, Agnes decided to carry out missionary work.
Agnes decided to become a catholic nun in order to do missionary work and spread the message of love and compassion in the world. In 1928, she became a Catholic nun and changed her name from Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu to Theresa. Later on she joined the Irish order “The Sisters of Loretto”. In order to carry out missionary work in India, she was sent to Calcutta on 6th October 1929 where she was appointed as a teacher at St. Mary’s high school. Sister Teresa became mother Teresa on 24th may 1937, when she made final professions of vows to become the “Spouse of Jesus for Enternity”. In 1944, she was made the principal of the school.
Mother Teresa taught at St. Mary High School from 1931 to 1948. The condition of poor people living outside the convent made such a deep impact on her hat she decided to serve the destitute. In 1948, she was granted permission from her superiors to leave the convent school and take on the tasks of serving the poor slum dwellers in Calcutta. Although having no funds, her determination kept her going. With strong faith on the Divine providence, she started an open air-school for slum children and was later joined by volunteer helpers.
Financial assistance started pouring in. Thus it made it possible for mother Teresa to extend her works. Living a life solely to helping the poor and destitute, Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu known as Mother Teresa died on 5th October 1997 in Kolkata.