Thursday, August 26, 2010

Remembering Mother Teresa of Calcutta on her 100th birthday

Thursday, August 26, is the 100th anniversary the birth of the great Mother Teresa. This tiny but altogether remarkable nun was one of the most memorable and important figures--and forces for good--of the 20th century. She is now well on the path to canonization, and is honored by the title "Blessed." You can read about her life in detail here: Tell your children about her: her life and her wonderful work with the poor, the suffering, and the dying of Calcutta--and all around the world.

Today let's remember her birthday--light candles on a cake, and sing to her in heaven! But, you know, if you can't quite get to baking that cake, and you're out of birthday candles, never mind! The important thing is to recall her and honor her memory--and try to imitate her, as much as we can. Here are two of her famous thoughts and sayings:

"God has created us for greater things – to love and to be loved."

And emphasizing the importance of family life and love, she said:

"Smile at each other, make time for each other in your family, we never know how much good just a simple smile can do."

And one more great quote:

"Being unwanted, unloved, uncared for, forgotten by everybody, I think that is a much greater hunger, a much greater poverty than the person who has nothing to eat."

Ahhh, now I can't stop!--she said so many great things! Here is one last one:

"I am a little pencil in the hand of a writing God who is sending a love letter to the world."

(There are lots more great quotes from Blessed Teresa at: )


  1. Thank you for this reminder!
    I will forever remember when I met Mother Teresa as a young girl (about 5 years old) when she came to visit her sisters in Washington, DC. I remember being struck by two things in particular. The first: I had never seen so many people standing shoulder to shoulder in one room before, and all in complete silence as they listened to every single word of this small, old woman who was before them! The second: I remember studying her sweet face that reminded me of my father's old leather briefcase. It was a tapestry of wrinkles and smiles. Such beauty!
    We have a photograph of her holding my (then) baby sister, Mary, who has down syndrome.

    Thank you for encouraging us to remember her this day!

  2. One of my favorites of hers is this: God hasn't called me to be successful. He's called me to be faithful.

  3. And here is her wonderful prayer for the family:

    Heavenly Father, you have given us a model of life in the Holy Family of Nazareth. Help us, O loving Father to make our family another Nazareth where love, peace and joy reign. May it be deeply contemplative, intensely Eucharistic and vibrant with joy. Help us to stay together in joy and sorrow through family prayer. Teach us to see Jesus in the members of our family especially in their distressing disguise. May the Eucharistic Heart of Jesus make our hearts meek and humble like His and help us to carry out our family duties in a holy way. May we love one another as God loves each one of us more and more each day, and forgive each other's faults as You forgive our sins. Help us, O loving Father to take whatever You give and to give whatever You take with a big smile. Immaculate Heart of Mary, cause of our joy, pray for us. St. Joseph, pray for us. Holy Guardian Angels be always with us, guide and protect us. Amen.