Whether one are Catholic or not, one has to admit that Mother Teresa was a shining example of Christianity. She has been a nun since 1928, when she was only 18 years old. To put that into perspective she was already in her young 30’s when WWII was in the heat of battle. She passed away in 1997 at the age of 87, leaving behind a legacy hardly everyone in the developed world knew about.
Her early years, as a nun, were spent teaching as a school in India and eventually becoming the headmistress. While living in India she became increasingly concerned about the poor people there. She felt the strong calling to serve the poor and that is exactly what she did for the next 5 decades!
“I was to leave the convent and help the poor while living among them. It was an order. To fail would have been to break the faith.”
Living among the poor was not always pretty. She was not always a world-renown missionary. In fact, early on she was even homeless. Of this time period she said,
Today, I learned a good lesson. The poverty of the poor must be so hard for them. While looking for a home I walked and walked till my arms and legs ached. I thought how much they must ache in body and soul, looking for a home, food and health. -Mother Teresa-
Her struggle remained difficult but found some ease in 1950 when the Catholic church approved funds for starting a diocesan congregation known as Missionaries of Charity. Initially with only 13 members, this mission grew to have 4,000 sisters running an orphanage. That was just the orphanage workers.
In 1952 she opened a space that many have known her for today, the dying ministry. This ministry is exactly what you might think it is. She cared for the sick and dying. This was essentially free hospice for the poor and outcasts. About her own ministry she was quoted as saying,
A beautiful death,” she said, “is for people who lived like animals to die like angels—loved and wanted -Mother Teresa-
I could go on about what a wonderful example of Christ’s love Mother Teresa was but I won’t. As a non-Catholic I encourage all other protestants and orthodox to commend the Catholic church for holding up this great servant of Christ to the highest honor within the Catholic church.