Mother Teresa born 110 years ago
Michael speaks to Philip Almond, Emeritus Professor The Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities at The University of Queensland, regarding the life and times of Mother Mary Teresa Bojaxhiu, who was born 110 years ago on 26th August 1910, and honoured in the Catholic Church as Saint Teresa of Calcutta.
Mother Teresa was born in Skopje (now the capital of North Macedonia), then part of the Kosovo Vilayet of the Ottoman Empire. After living in Skopje for eighteen years, she moved to Ireland and then to India, where she lived for most of her life.
In 1950, Teresa founded the Missionaries of Charity, a Roman Catholic religious congregation that had over 4,500 nuns and was active in 133 countries in 2012. The congregation manages homes for people who are dying of HIV/AIDS, leprosy and tuberculosis. It also runs soup kitchens, dispensaries, mobile clinics, children’s and family counselling programmes, as well as orphanages and schools.
Members take vows of chastity, poverty, and obedience, and also profess a fourth vow – to give “wholehearted free service to the poorest of the poor.”
Teresa received a number of honors, including the 1962 Ramon Magsaysay Peace Prize and 1979 Nobel Peace Prize, and was canonised on 4 September 2016, and the anniversary of her death (5 September) is her feast day.
A controversial figure during her life and after her death, Teresa was admired by many for her charitable work.
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