Like nearly everyone, Catholic or not, we are very excited with the canonization of Saint Teresa of Calcutta on September 4th, 2016. Mother Teresa, like Saint John Paul the Great, influenced the world in ways only a soul completely given over to God could. Like John Paul II, her being raised to the altars, gives us all moments to pause and remember this wonderful Saint and her impact. For a few Handmaids, that impact got to be personal whether they encountered her before their entry into religious life or worked with her once in the monastery. In all their recollections, the common denominator was the shared conviction of meeting a Saint in close union with God.
In the case of our own Mother David Marie, who from eternity can herself now rejoice over this new addition to the ranks of official Saints, she was blessed to have occasion to meet Mother Teresa in interesting circumstances and benefit from her aid. Mother Teresa knew our Community for many years through the Servant of God, Father John A. Hardon, S.J. Together with Father Hardon, Mother Teresa came to our assistance in our initial efforts to open a small house in Rome in 1991. She even delayed a trip she was making to Albania to be of help during a nine day search for property suitable to our contemplative life. Through her intercession, Mother David Marie was granted a Mass with Pope John Paul II in his private Chapel during that trip. Our initial stay in Rome was at Santa Maria della Pace before we later moved to Capena.
More than gratitude for anything Mother Teresa may have done for us in particular, is the great thanks we give to God for having allowed our Sisters to meet such a holy religious and inspiration and see the powerful effects of her interior life of prayer touch everything she did.
Most of all, the Sisters who witnessed Mother Teresa’s striking ability to see Christ in each person she met and respond in kind, is something they will never forget. The Church gains a great Saint this September. Let us all sing a hymn of gratitude!
Saint Teresa of Calcutta, pray for us!