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Inspiring Women of Faith

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Presentation on theme: "Inspiring Women of Faith"— Presentation transcript:

1 Inspiring Women of Faith
Sister Helen Prejean Mother Teresa

2 Mother Teresa of Calcutta
Agnes Bojaxhu was born in Yugoslavia in She entered the convent at the age of 18, taking the name of Sr Teresa. She sailed for India and for years, taught at a girls’ Catholic school. Most of the students were from wealthy families.

3 While on a train returning from her annual retreat, Sister Teresa felt the call of God to leave the security of her convent life. She believed God was calling her to minister to the poorest of the poor on the streets of Calcutta.

4 She responded to this call, and left the convent in 1948
She responded to this call, and left the convent in She lived very simply, and spent her days picking up dying people from the streets. In 1950 she opened the first Home for the Dying, where the outcasts of Calcutta could die with dignity.

5 Many girls she had taught at the Loretto convent school joined her in her work. They too, dedicated their lives to Jesus in serving the very poor. In 1950, Sr Teresa’s order became known as the Missionaries of Charity.

6 She taught her nuns to live very simple lives, to pray constantly and to see the face of Jesus in every person, especially the poorest of the poor.

7 She and her sisters set up homes not only in third world countries, but also in New York and Rome. She saw spiritual poverty as the worst poverty of all.

8 Mother Teresa won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979 for her service of love to the world. She accepted the award – ..”in the name of the hungry, the naked, the homeless, the crippled, the blind, the lepers, of all those people who feel unwanted, unloved, uncared for throughout society, people who have become a burden to the society and are shunned by everyone.” - Mother Teresa’s Acceptance Speech

9 Mother Teresa died on September 5, 1997, at the age of 87.
Her Missionaries of Charity continue to grow and serve the poorest of the poor. Her Order is currently going through the process of having Mother Teresa declared a saint.

10 Interview with Mother Teresa

11 Sister Helen Prejean When Helen Prejean, a Sister of St Joseph, left her teaching job to live in a housing project, her life changed. She became pen pals with Patrick Sonnier, a convicted killer of two teenagers, who was on Death Row.

12 Sonnier was sentenced to die in the electric chair of Louisiana’s Angola State Prison.
Sonnier invited Helen to visit him regularly as his spiritual advisor. On the night of April 5, 1984, she accompanied him to his execution.

13 Sister Helen’s last words to Patrick Sonnier -
“You look at me, you look at my face. I can’t bear the thought that you would die without seeing one loving face. I will be the face of Christ for you.”

14 Sr Helen was greatly affected by the experience of watching another human being be executed. She said: “I couldn’t watch someone be killed and walk away. Like a sacrament, the execution left an indelible mark on my soul.”

15 She wrote about her experiences in a book called Dead Man Walking, which was made into a major motion picture.

16 She has educated the public about the death penalty by lecturing, writing and speaking all over the USA.

17 She is outspoken in her oppostion to the death penalty as an inhuman and immoral act.

18 Sr Helen continues to counsel inmates on Death Row and accompany them to their execution.

19 Sr Helen also works with the families of both the murderers and their victims.
She says that prayer and dedication drive her. When she’s in the right place at the right time, Sr Helen says she is aware if God’s presence.

20 Although the Catholic Church teaches that the death penalty is almost never morally acceptable in modern society, there are around 3,000 people awaiting execution in the United States.


22 The End

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