Pope Francis approves sainthood for Mother Teresa

Pope Francis approves sainthood for Mother Teresa
March 15 17:11 2016

Pope Francis has approved sainthood for Mother Teresa, the missionary nun who in her lifetime became a global figure of compassion for her care of the needy. The pontiff set September 4 as the date for her canonisation, elevating the Nobel peace laureate to an official icon for the Catholic faith.

The move comes 19 years after the death of the Albanian nun who dedicated much of her adult life to working with
the poor in the slums of Kolkata, India. Officials said the canonisation ceremony would take place at the Vatican .

On Tuesday, hundreds attended a prayer meeting at Mother House in Kolkata, the global headquarters of the Missionaries of Charity where Mother Teresa was buried. Teresa, who was 87 when she died in 1997, was revered by Catholics and and many others around the world. Known as the “Angel of Mercy” or “Saint of the Gutters”, she won the 1979 Nobel peace prize for her work with the poor.

Despite posthumously published letters revealing that she suffered crises of faith throughout her life, Teresa has
been fast-tracked to canonisation in unusually quick time, underlining her status as a modern-day icon of Catholicism.

Teresa took the first step to sainthood in 2003 when she was beatified by Pope John Paul II following the recognition of a claim she had posthumously inspired the 1998 healing of a critically-ill Bengali tribal woman.

Last year she was credited by Vatican experts with inspiring the 2008 recovery of a Brazilian man suffering from multiple brain tumours, thus meeting the Church’s standard requirement for sainthood of having been involved in two certifiable miracles.

Teresa was born Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu to Albanian parents in 1910 in Skopje, now the capital of Macedonia.

She started her life as a nun as a teenager with a missionary order in Ireland and arrived in India in 1929.

She founded her own Missionaries of Charity order in 1950 and was granted Indian citizenship a year later.

Francis, who regards Teresa as the incarnation of the kind of Church he wants to lead, met the by-then internationally
famous nun three years before her death, when he was still a bishop in Argentina.

He later joked that she had seemed so formidable he “would have been scared if she had been my mother superior”.