If God asked you to live among the poorest of the poor, would you and could you do it? Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu was born on August 26th, 1910, but she says that August 27th is her true birthdate because that’s when she was baptized. She was born in Skopje, Macedonia. Her father’s name was Nikollë Bojaxhiu who was an Albanian Businessman and died when she was 8, her mother Dranafile Bojaxhiu, worked as a grocer, her brother Lazar Bojaxhiu was a soldier, and her sister Aga Bojaxhiu didn’t have a job. When Agnes became a nun, she took the name of Mother Teresa and no idea that the entire world would know her by the end of her life.
Mother Teresa was a very godly and obedient woman who answered and obeyed as best she could the call from God on her life, saying that it was “His work and she was just a pencil in God’s hand”. When she was 18, she left home for Ireland to become a missionary and a nun, then six weeks after that, she left for India. The day she left was the last time she saw her mother and sister because in those days transportation took a long time and it was expensive. Mother Teresa concluded, “The life of a missionary is not strewn with roses, in fact more with thorns; but with it all, it is a life full of happiness and joy when she thinks that she is doing the same work which Jesus was doing when He was on earth, and that she is fulfilling Jesus’ commandment: “Go and teach all the nations!” Even though the life of a missionary is hard, Mother Teresa chose it because obeying the call was the most important thing to her, she was actually called to a life of poverty. She was a simple women wearing only a white sari with blue stripes that only cost only $1! For a long time she was a teacher at a school for girls, and though she had no supplies for the school, she managed to teach the children to read and write by writing words in the sand. On October 7th, 1950, the Missionaries of Charity was established which allowed Mother Teresa to actually live in the slums with the poorest of the poor along with a group of ladies who agreed to go with her. It was obvious God was with her because she experienced Pneumonia, Malaria, fractured 3 ribs, broke her shoulder bone, suffered 2 heart attacks, and even broke her collar bone! Within a 10 year period, Mother Teresa and the other sisters opened a leper colony, an orphanage, a nursing home, a family clinic, and many mobile health clinics. She was a great example to the others that worked as a Missionary of Charity an she was an amazing example of Jesus. By the time she was an old women she had earned a total of 18 awards. The Nobel Peace Prize was one of them. Mother Teresa refused most of her awards because she didn’t like how much money was being spent on her. For The Nobel Peace Prize, the person awarded the prize gets a $192,000 feast, Mother Teresa completely refused and asked them if they could donate the money to the poor in India instead and they honored that. She changed the world even though she was a small and delicate person and she feared being recognized by the world she wanted to be nothing to the world and the world be nothing to her.
Mother Teresa died Sep. 5 1997 in Calcutta, India when she was 87. But she left behind a legacy, on the 13th of March,1997 Mother Teresa retired as the head of the Missionaries of Charity, because of her lack of good health. The Missionaries of Charity completed 610 missions in 123 countries. The total number of people working in the Missionaries of Charity was, over 4,000 nuns and 300 monks and priests. At the present time, there are still Missionaries of Charity working all over the world to continue what Mother Teresa’s efforts started, in 2015 there were 5624 brothers and sisters working in 844 houses in 170 countries! When she died, Pope Francis made her a true catholic saint, but to Calcutta and all of the world she was a source of light in the darkness.