Friday, August 31, 2007

Blessed Teresa

Most of us who have heard about Mother Teresa of Calcutta know her as the “living saint” ever since Time magazine put her on the cover with such a title. The name stuck and soon after she died in 1997, Pope John Paul II fast-tracked her canonization process so that she is now referred to as Blessed Teresa of Calcutta. Now the same Time magazine has published excerpts from “Mother Teresa: Come Be My Light” which is a collection of her private journals and letters that clearly depicts what St John of the Cross called a “dark night” of the soul, when one feels completely abandoned by God, that lasted for decades until the end of her life.

Blessed Teresa founded the Missionaries of Charity and was greatly engaged in ministering to the poorest of the poor when she confided to the archbishop of Calcutta “I find no words to express the depths of the darkness.” A couple of years later she wrote “in my soul I feel just that terrible pain of loss, of God not wanting me — of God not being God — of God not existing.”

Eventually Mother Teresa was able to sublimate these dreadful doubts and began understanding the sense of total abandonment that Jesus must have experienced when he was crucified. This understanding allowed her to be faithful to her heroic ministry.

I myself believe in God mostly because I want to believe in an afterlife. I don’t want to think that nothing follows this brief earthly spell of ours. It is comforting to know that even our Saints who have laid their lives for others are sometimes wracked with uncertainty. What matters is whether we can make these doubts transform us into even more compassionate persons.

3 comments:

thestoryofhealing said...

In my still short life, I learned that there will always be uncertainty. However, in spite of the multitudes of uncertainty that may come our way, visits like these should just be potent reminders that we may not always remain in such dwelling. These moments remind us to push further in that intuitive direction God has gifted us all with. There is something certain after. The uncertainties are there for the purpose of learning and clearing the cobwebs off our souls and minds. And tomorrow will always be another door, another opportunity for the one certain thing and that is the potential to live good and share that good.

Anonymous said...

....just read TIME about Mother Teresa....the writer of the article I think did not emphasize the staement of M. Teresa that she had a dialogue with a voice that she identified later as Christ !....I feel that the idea of " abandonement" and " longing " and " pain " cannot stand to the fact of a personal comunication with the Lord. Meaning... thousands of saints, known and unknown, I suppose would have a lesser feeling of abandonement etc. ...when sometime in their lives, they had just a single talk with Jesus Christ....

Anonymous said...

There has to be a God, and I think so too. Religion however is a different story. Churches pushing their beliefs as facts, when there as so many conflicting "facts" in the world. I believe religion helps the world not to unite, and keep people from seeing the truths that they see everyday - that suffering does come and should be accepted, after doing what can be done to minimize it.