Mother Teresa, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, died on September 5, 1997, in her convent in India. She was 87. Born Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu in 1910 in Skopje, Yugoslavia. She took the name "Teresa" after St. Teresa of Lisieux, patroness of the Missionaries.
In 1948, she came across a half-dead woman lying in front of a Calcutta hospital. She stayed with the woman until she died. From that point on, she dedicated the majority of her life to helping the poorest of the poor in India, thus gaining her the name "Saint of the Gutters."
She founded an order of nuns called the Missionaries of Charity in Calcutta, India dedicated to serving the poor. Almost 50 years later, the Missionaries of Charity have grown from 12 sisters in India to over 3,000 in 517 missions throughout 100 countries world-wide.
In 1952, she founded a special home for the dying in a former temple in Calcutta. It was there that they would care for the dying Indians that were found on the streets. Mother Teresa saw goodness in everyone. She did not judge people. She wanted them to be able to die in peace and with dignity. For over 50 years, she worked selflessly helping the poor. This devotion won her respect throughout the world and the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979.
Mother Teresa had suffered from heart problems. She suffered a serious heart attack in 1989. It was then that a pacemaker was installed. She died in 1997, suffering from malaria and being treated for a chest infection. Many people think of her as a living saint and she is still widely talked about today.
YOUR TASK In your groups, play Take A Stand! You will be given strips of paper. Think about your most important belief, and write this down secretly! One person at a time to reveal their belief, discuss your reasons for choosing this belief. Pass it around one at a time so others in your group can talk about how they feel about this belief too.
Finally… As a group, order the beliefs in order of importance. When you have negotiated and decided the order, write the list down in your books. Lastly, write about your chosen belief and what it means to you.