<<< Personal recollections and experiences with Mother Teresa
When I was a young girl, I was starving to find something right and good and beautiful in life. My childhood was filled with rejection, neglect, abuse and crushed hope. Then one day I learned about a nun named Teresa, who sacrificed and loved, but didn't ask for anything in return. I saw the light of Christ shining through her, and that day my faith began infant steps as I watched her through the years. Mother Teresa's example shined so brightly that later I found my way to Christ, the Catholic faith, and a beautiful life.
Back in the 1980s, Mother Teresa gave a talk in San Jose. I wanted so much to see and hear her that I played hooky from my job. When she bean to speak, I felt as if I were the only one in the room. I was no longer aware of the people around me. It was as if I was held in a beam of light. I barely breathed. It was only when I heard the thunderous applause at the end of her talk that I felt a return to my surroundings. Then I cried because I knew I would never see her again.
I am the owner of a personal letter she wrote to me, and it is my dearest possession. Mother Teresa is very special to me.
I was living in Charleston, South Carolina. I had six children. The youngest was a toddler when Mother Teresa came to visit our city. My other friend, who was also from Scotland, and her three children carpooled with me to the stadium where Mother Teresa was to be given The Mother of God Award by the bishop.
The stands were packed. We did manage to get a good seat so that we could see Mother Teresa as she entered the field and approached the podium. As Mother Teresa left the field in the midst of applause, I asked my friend and my older children to keep an eye on the little ones as I dashed down the bleachers to the gate where she was headed. I was able to squeeze my way through the crowd that had already gathered there, and then the miracle happened. I was able to reach out to her and she took my hand. She held my hand with her rosary beads still in her hand and she smiled at me.
My life has never been the same.
I had the life-changing opportunity to work in Calcutta alongside Mother Teresa in 1989. The circumstances that led me to Mother are incredible and a miracle. Mother T. is all, and more than all, you have ever thought or heard. Mother and the Sisters re-energized my life, which was on the verge of total burn-out. I'm still working with the lost and hurting all these years later, all because of Mother's words and guidance.
Years ago a pro-life organization (Birthright) had their annual convention at Notre Dame (South Bend). They had a surprise guest speaker, which turned out to be Mother Teresa. What this woman lacked in physical presence, she more than made up for in spiritual presence, powerhouse that she was. One of the things she said will stay with me forever: "Babies are like daisies; there can never be too many." Whenever I think of another child being born in anything but the best of circumstances, I think of her words and how she is looking down from heaven and smiling on the birth of yet another new life, another creation in God's image.
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