Beanery Online Literary Magazine

November 21, 2008

MOTHER TERESA: IN MEMORIAM

BEANERY ONLINE LITERARY MAGAZINE

MOTHER TERESA: IN MEMORIAM

Mustang Sally

On one anniversary of Mother Teresa’s death, Mustang Sally sent the Beanery Writers Group members an excerpt on her from the book  Mustang Sally’s Guide to World Bicycle Touring. It was a telling of Mustang Sally’s meeting with Mother Teresa.
Mother Teresa was born in Skopje Macedonia. She was seven years old when her father was murdered and her family fell into poverty. She decided to follow in the footsteps of the Irish missionary nuns who educated her. She trained in Dublin Ireland at age 18. Her first assignment was in Calcutta, India, where she taught high school and worked her way to principal.
One day she found a woman dying in the street and sat with her, stroking her head until death came. This experience inspired her to found a new religious order. The Order of the Missionaries of Charity devoted itself to anyone who was “unwanted, unloved and uncared for.” By the time she died the Order included more than 5,000 nuns and brothers who operated over 2,500 orphanages, schools, clinics and hospices in 120 countries, including the United States.

     10.18.95  Calcutta. Tomorrow is to be the last day in Calcutta and I will spend it going to the Lepers’ colony.  It is fairly far from the city and is quite extensive when you get there. The ill are given a place to stay and work so that they can be self-supporting.   Linda wants me to go to the Varinasi with her and I would like to do that but I have my schedule.
     The place we visited today was for women from a prison. These women were in terrible condition when Mother Teresa got them out of prison. They had been kept in a room with no clothing, no sanitary facilities and were in wretched condition. Imagine being in jail in India. Now add to that that Bengal and the jails are run by Communists. This must be the place the doctor was asking for Mother Teresa to take certain women from a prison to.
     The sister who is in charge of the shelter says that the women will never leave this serene, clean place. They aren’t too swift mentally and haven’t the skills to survive on the street.  I ask where the money comes from and she says many places. One group of donors are Buddhist priests who send everything they collect on Fridays. Most of the women are mentally handicapped, either before the prison ordeal or from the ordeal.  It is a beautiful facility and like everything of The Missionaries of Charity, full to capacity. There are a couple of hundred nuns in Calcutta and 6000 world wide, according to the sister we were talking to. The most astonishing thing is that no matter where you go there is another facility you hadn’t known about. Today’s surprise was college for teaching teachers for Missions of Charity, again, a neat, clean college.  Children at the orphanage where I worked go to school at St. Mary’s and there is an Anthony’s High School where I saw Missions of Charity sisters. It is all so well run and so organized.  Just to be so clean and decently fed in Calcutta is an operation.
     Yesterday I followed Linda to the street called City of Joy. Patric Swazey was nowhere to be seen. Just off this street, infamous for the open sewer and abject poverty, was a place for children with TB, painted white with the baby blue trim that announces Mother Teresa. There are not super sick kids here and classes were being held on the first floor. I had a lot of fun playing Simon Says with the kids on the second floor.  They are eager to learn English. I felt a lot of empathy because I had TB as a child.  Pittsburgh was as polluted as Calcutta during the WWII years. No one in my family can remember my having it but I have three calcified spots that show up on x-rays and always test positive to the patch test.
To read more about Mustang Sally’s book click on Self-Publishing as I wander through it.
To read more about Mother Teresa click on the following:
Mother Teresa in Memoriam — http://www.ewtn.com/motherteresa/
For Mother Teresa, a profound darkness   http://www.elpasotimes.com/ci_6719662?source%253Dmost_viewed.20F88DA3D7D369F5BB70F372987EAE1F.html
   Flynn: Mother Teresa’s doubts work of the devil
http://news.bostonherald.com/localRegional/view.bg?articleid=1019490
   Mother Teresa’s Dark Night Unique, Says Preacher
   http://www.zenit.org/article-20348?l=english

ADDITIONAL READING:

ALL SUMMER IN A DAY: The Use of Descriptive Language

HAIR UNAWARE

RIDING THE RAILS: A True Story

THE WRITING LIFE: There’s a World Out There?

“DATING WHEN FIFTY-SOME:” A Guy’s Version

QUINTESSENCE

THOUGHTS FOR DAVID

JUST ANOTHER WEEKEND IN PARADISE

AND NOW, THE FORECAST

I HAVE A PERMIT TO CARRY…

CHILD ABUSE DEFINITIONS

GEORGE D. SHUMAN: Author of “18 SECONDS” & “LAST BREATH” Part 1

THE SPECTACULAR PENOBSCOT RIVER A Natural Wonder in Maine: Part 1

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