As it happened: Mother Teresa declared 'Saint Teresa of Calcutta' by Pope Francis

Sep, 04 2016 IST

  • 16:43 (IST)

    IndiaPost releases postage stamp on Saint Teresa (Image courtesy: AP)
    To celebrate the canonisation of Mother Teresa as a saint, IndiaPost on Sunday released a commemorative postage stamp on her.

    Union Minister of State for Communications Manoj Sinha unveiled the postage stamp during a ceremony at the Divine Child High School here, an official statement said.  - PTI

  • 16:01 (IST)

    Road named after Mother Teresa in Bhubaneswar

    Bhubaneswar: An important road in Bhubaneswar was on Sunday named after Mother Teresa coinciding with her canonisation ceremony at the Vatican.

    Dedicating the road linking Satya Nagar and Cuttack-Puri highway in her memory, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said henceforth the pathway would be known as 'Saint Mother Teresa Road'.

    "I pay my heartfelt tributes to Mother Teresa on her cannonisation as Saint Mother Teresa. She arrived in India in 1929 and made this country her home to serve the poor, the deceased and the destitute," Patnaik said.

    "It is time for all of us to take a leaf from her book of compassion and service and work for the poor and distressed. Let's work for the dignity of every human being and the people around us," he said. 

    The decision to name the road after Mother Teresa was taken at the request of the Odisha Catholic Bishops’ Council (OCBC) Chairman Archbishop John Barwa. 

    In Odisha, the Missionaries of Charity, the organisation created by Mother Teresa, has 18 homes.

    She had first visited Bhubaneswar in 1974 and met the then Chief Minister Nandini Satpathy and Governor Akbar Ali Khan. Since then she visited Odisha several times. - PTI

  • 15:29 (IST)

    Politicians hail Saint Terasa of Calcutta

  • 15:28 (IST)

    AINRC leader N Rangasamy hails​ canonisation of Saint Teresa

    The AINRC founder N Rangasamy has expressed jubilation over the canonisation of revered nun Mother Teresa in Vatican city in Italy on Sunday.

    In a release on Sunday, the former Puducherry Chief Minister said, "The AINRC joins the whole nation in expressing its joy and jubilation over the canonisation of Mother Teresa which is a matter of great pride to India." 

    He further said, the whole humanity and more particularly the poor and the helpless in India were taken care of by Mother Teresa, who dedicated her entire life to serving them.

    "We are extremely elated to see that Mother Teresa would be known as Saint Teresa to the whole world." ​  - PTI

  • 15:04 (IST)

    EAM Sushma Swaraj and Indian delegation present at St. Peter's Sqaure

  • 15:00 (IST)

    Canonisation ceremony from St. Peter's square. (Image courtesy: Centro Televisivo Vaticano​ YouTube)

    Thousands, including Pope Francis pray as Mother Teresa gets elevated as a Saint. The ceremony came a day before the 19th anniversary of Teresa's death in Kolkata, where she spent nearly four decades tending to the poorest of the poor. 

  • 14:54 (IST)

    External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj at the Canonisation ceremony

  • 14:21 (IST)

    Pope Francis declares Mother Teresa a saint

    "For the honour of the Blessed Trinity... we declare and define Blessed Teresa of Calcutta (Kolkata) to be a Saint and we enroll her among the Saints, decreeing that she is to be venerated as such by the whole Church," the pontiff said in Latin. 

  • 14:16 (IST)

    Relics of Mother Teresa being presented at the altar. (Image courtesy: Centro Televisivo Vaticano​ YouTube)

  • 14:15 (IST)

    The nuns of Missionary of Charity present relics of Mother Teresa at the altar. (Image courtesy: Centro Televisivo Vaticano​ YouTube)

  • 14:12 (IST)

    Pope Francis reads out Formula of Canonisation. (Image courtesy: Centro Televisivo Vaticano​ YouTube)

  • 14:08 (IST)

    Canonisation mass in numbers. (Image courtesy: Centro Televisivo Vaticano YouTube)

    Lakhs of believers are attending Mother Teresa's canonisation mass. It includes 250 sisters representing all the houses. Foreign ministers from 70 countries,13 heads of states, according to reports. Bengal, the karmabhoomi of the Mother, has sent a 40-strong delegation led by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. India's External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj is also present, and so is Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal.

  • 14:06 (IST)

    Congregation sings a prayer for Mother Teresa. (Image courtesy: Centro Televisivo Vaticano​ YouTube)

  • 14:00 (IST)

    Cardinals present the canonisation plea as the process begins. (Image courtesy: Centro Televisivo Vaticano​ YouTube)

  • 13:58 (IST)

    Pope Francis leads the Canonisation Mass

  • 13:56 (IST)

    Pope Francis leads the Canonisation Mass  (Image courtesy: Centro Televisivo Vaticano​ YouTube)

  • 13:55 (IST)

  • 13:50 (IST)

    Thousands throng the Vatican square as the Holy Mass begins (Image courtesy: Centro Televisivo Vaticano​ YouTube)

  • 13:47 (IST)

    Kolkata's 'Mother Teresa' shop
     
    Tucked away in a corner of the city's busy bustling Ripon Street is a small shop that sells exclusively Mother Teresa souvenirs. Owners – Fatema and husband Sk Nurul Islam – according to a report in Ei Samay, turned their store selling electrical goods into a shop selling Mother memorabilia which the duo collects from all around the country. According to the report, the change came about when Fatema was once approached by a foreign tourist searching for mementos on Mother.
     
    The shop has around 200 different items from bracelets to necklaces, coffee mugs to key chains, apparel to water bottles carrying Mother's message, says the report in Sunday'sedition of the Bengali daily.
     
     

  • 13:26 (IST)

    Thousands attend mass ahead of Mother Teresa's canonisation ceremony

    Thousands of pilgrims have gathered at the St. Peter's Square attending the mass ahead of the canonisation ceremony of Mother Teresa which will begin shortly. Visuals from the St. Peter's Square (Image courtesy: Centro Televisivo Vaticano​ YouTube)

  • 13:17 (IST)

    'Miracle' woman, who was 'cured from tumour' by Mother Teresa, will pray throughout the ceremony
     
    Monica Besra, the tribal woman who was "miraculously cured" by Mother Teresa in 1998 from a cancerous tumour, will be praying through the entire day during the canonisation ceremony, reports ABP. Besra's "cure" was the first milestone in Mother Teresa's long journey towards sainthood. Monica has kept the local chapel at Nakor hamlet in Harirampur in south Dinajpur district spick and span where the first prayer was held on Sunday morning, says the report.
     
     

  • 13:10 (IST)

    Nuns carry relics of Mother Teresa (Image courtesy: AP)

    The relics of Mother Teresa are being carried by nuns prior to the start of a mass celebrated by Pope Francis in St. Peter's Square on Sunday.

  • 13:04 (IST)

    Every Indian will take pride in Mother's canonisation: President Pranab Mukherjee 

    President Pranab Mukherjee called Mother Teresa a "messiah" of the poor and a pillar of support for the weak as he said every Indian will take pride on her canonisation today.

    In his message on the eve of the canonisation ceremony to be done by Pope Francis at Vatican City, Mukherjee said Mother Teresa was an embodiment of compassion.

    "She dedicated her entire life to serving the poorest of the poor as well as the destitute and forsaken. Mother Teresa saw herself as 'small pencil in the hands of the Lord' and went about her work quietly, offering smiles and warm human gestures.

    "Always dressed in a simple white, blue border sari, Mother Teresa undertook her work with great love and commitment. Mother Teresa provided dignity and respect to those who had been defeated by life. She was a messiah of the poor and a pillar of support for the weak and suffering. Her simple manners touched the hearts of millions of people of all faiths," he said.

    The President said her message of love continues to inspire millions of people around the world.

    "Every citizen of India will take pride in the recognition being accorded to Mother Teresa for her service to humanity and God through this Canonisation. Let the example of Mother Teresa inspire all of us to dedicate ourselves to the welfare of mankind," he said.  - PTI

  • 12:51 (IST)

    Mamata ditches vehicle; walks to the venue
    Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee was seen walking to Vatican City where Mother Teresa will be canonised shortly from now. According to a report in ABP Ananda, Mamata decided not avail of the vehicle which was ready to ferry her team and chose to walk it instead with a song on her lips.
     
    Bengal CM won't sit with VVIPs, says report
    Mamata, who donned a simple white sari with blue border a la Mother Teresa during her stay at the Vatican City, will not be seated at the VVIP enclosure during the ceremony, writes ABP's Jayanta Ghoshal from Rome. Though arrangements were made for Mamata, India's External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, the Bengal CM and her team will reportedly join the huge delegation from Kolkata's Missionaries of Charity to sit at the back of the hall, says the newspaper.
     
    Politics during sainthood?
    A report in ABP Ananda channel also stated that the Bengal CM had a long chat with AAP supremo Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday night. Both leaders, along with foreign minister Sushma Awaraj, are in Rome for Mother Teresa's canonisation.

  • 12:46 (IST)

    'Epitome of grace, compassion, and love': Sonia Gandhi hails canonisation of Mother Teresa

    Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Sunday hailed the canonisation of Mother Teresa saying it was a recognition of her service to the poorest of poor, the dying and destitute.

    Describing the life of Mother Teresa as "an epitome of grace, compassion, and love", Gandhi said that "her saintly life will forever inspire humanity to commit to the cause of those who have no voice, no community, no home, no care and no love."

    Wishing the Missionaries of Charity great success, she stressed that every Indian took great pride in the life, work and sainthood of Mother Teresa and shall be always grateful for her service. - PTI

  • 12:34 (IST)

    Visuals from Vatican square 

    The canonisation ceremony of Mother Teresa to commence shortly

  • 12:29 (IST)

    Meanwhile at the St. Peter's Square in Vatican (Image courtesy: AP)

    Pilgrims waiting outside the St. Peter's Square ahead of the canonisation ceremony

  • 12:25 (IST)

    As the Vatican gears up to confer sainthood on Mother Teresa, these are Mother House in Kolkata (Images: Pradesh18)

  • 12:21 (IST)

    Festive mood in Mother House in Kolkata (Image courtesy: AP)
     
    Missionaries of Charity, or simply the Mother House in Kolkata, has become a pilgrimage for countless from home and abroad. As soon as the formal program to confer sainthood begins in Rome, it will be telecast live in city's one of the most famous addresses — 54A, A.J.C. Bose Road. 
     
    The mood in Mother House, according to a report in ETV News Bangla, is festive. Prayers will kick off the day's event followed by the live telecast. The entire has been decked up with people from all around the world in attendance, including Pope Francis's representative from the Vatican City.
     
    - Inputs from Sreemoy Talukdar

  • 12:13 (IST)

    Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee sings Tagore's Aguner Poroshmoni Chhoaon Praane

    Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee breaks into a song at the Vatican City. Through her rendition of Rabindra Nath Tagore's "Aguner Poroshmoni Chhoaon Praane" along with her team, she was also hard-selling Bengal's image before a global audience.

    (Screengrab: Etv Bangla)

    - Inputs from Sreemoy Talukdar

  • 12:09 (IST)

    Visuals from St. Peter's Square (Image courtesy: AP)

  • 11:59 (IST)

    From Mother to Saint Teresa - the journey of "Blessed Teresa of Calcutta"

    (Video courtesy: CNN-News18)

  • 11:53 (IST)

    Visuals from the Vatican City Square  (Courtesy: Centro Televisivo Vaticano)

    Thousands have already gathered at the Basilica of St. Peter's Square. 

  • 11:46 (IST)

    West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is in the Vatican City to participate in canonization ceremony of Mother Teresa. 
    "Bengal is more proud as Mother lived and worked here and showered us with her abundant love and care. She was the mother of humanity. Her love for the ailing, the needy and the entire humanity was unbounded," Banerjee said.

  • 11:42 (IST)

    Here is an interesting infographic on the process of the canonisation (Courtesy: AFP)

  • 11:29 (IST)

    Visuals from the Vatican city

    Thousands have already started gathering at the St Peter's Square where Pope Francis will be leading the canonisation of the widely-beloved Roman Catholic nun. 

  • 11:16 (IST)

    Special prayers being offered at Sacred Heart Church in Bengaluru

  • 11:10 (IST)

    Meanwhile in India: 

    A statue of Mother Teresa unveiled at Seashore St. Anthony's Shrine in Chennai

  • 11:04 (IST)

    Vigil in honour of Mother Teresa

    Hundreds of people took part in a vigil at Vatican City ahead of Mother Teresa's canonisation which will be presided over by Pope Francis (Video courtesy: NBC News)

  • 10:57 (IST)

  • 10:18 (IST)

    Who is Dr Aroup Chatterjee?

    Not just Hitchens, but another of Mother Teresa's fiercest critics is British doctor Aroup Chatterjee. 

    In a piece by Sandip Roy for Firstpost, Chatterjee said, “I am not bothered if Mother Teresa becomes a Catholic saint.” He added that "the history of Catholic saints is anyway filled with dubious characters and fascists and anti-Semites.

    Last month, in an interview to The New York Times, Chatterjee revealed that he found himself disturbed by how Mother Teresa was being portrayed and how Kolkata, where she set up her charity, was being described as a "black hole". However, Chatterjee said that the city was extremely cosmopolitan.

  • 10:06 (IST)

    Why is her legacy questioned?

    One of Mother Teresa's most vocal critics, the late British author Christopher Hitchens, accused her of exacerbating the plight of the poor with her staunch opposition to contraception and abortion.

    The famous atheist, who made a provocative film about the nun called Hell's Angel in 1994, said she denied basic care to patients out of a belief that suffering brought them closer to God. "I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ," Hitchens quoted her as saying in 1981, in his book The Missionary Position.

    Some former volunteers say her order glorifies pain and poverty and accuse it of delivering bare-bones care, despite receiving millions of dollars in donations.

    Missionaries of Charity has vastly expanded since Mother Teresa's death, and now has 758 centres in 139 countries staffed by more than 5,000 nuns. Yet the order remains opaque, declining to publish its funding sources or accounts, a stance which has elicited suspicion over its management of allegedly vast sums.

    With inputs from AFP

  • 09:58 (IST)

    Who is Mother Teresa?

    Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu or later, Mother Teresa was born into a Kosovar Albanian family in 1910 in Skopje, which was then part of the Ottoman empire and now is the capital of Macedonia. Her father was a businessman who was involved in the region's Byzantine politics and died when she was eight.

    By the time she was 12, according to biographers, Agnes was already a regular visitor to Catholic shrines and knew that she wanted to dedicate her life to missionary work.

    At 18 she enrolled in an Irish order, the Sisters of Loreto, spending a brief period in Ireland learning English before her departure for India in 1929. There she spent two decades teaching geography to the children of well-to-do families before founding her own order in 1950.

    With inputs from AFP

  • 09:53 (IST)

    A look at Mother Teresa in photos

    Here are more photos ahead of worldwide celebrations of Mother Teresa's canonisation.

  • 09:43 (IST)

    What does canonisation involve?

    A canonisation process involves volumes of historical research, the hunt for miracles and teams of experts to weigh the evidence, which the Catholic Church goes through before making it official and declaring the candidate a saint. In Mother Teresa's case, the process will come to a formal end on Sunday when Pope Francis declares the Church's newest saint.

    With inputs from AP

  • 09:38 (IST)

    Sushma Swaraj arrives in Vatican City

    From India, a 12-member central delegation led by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and two state government-level delegations from Delhi and West Bengal led by Chief Ministers Arvind Kejriwal and Mamata Banerjee, respectively, will be in attendance during the function.

    Swaraj addresses the Indian community in Rome

    With inputs from PTI

  • 09:36 (IST)

    Special masses held

  • 09:34 (IST)

    Missionaries set to arrive

    A group of around 40-50 nuns from different parts of the country will be present at the ceremony led by Missionaries of Charity Superior General Sister Mary Prema.

    With inputs from PTI

Kolkata: Mother Teresa will be declared a saint by Pope Francis of the Roman Catholic Church in a canonisation ceremony in Vatican City on Sunday in the presence of over a lakh of her followers from all over the world.

From India, a 12-member central delegation led by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and two state government-level delegations from Delhi and West Bengal led by Chief Ministers Arvind Kejriwal and Mamata Banerjee, respectively, will be in attendance during the function.

Nuns at the Missionaries of Charity, founded by the late Nobel laureate nun, said the canonisation in Rome will have a special universal significance because of the Mother's popularity.

File photo of Mother Teresa. Reuters

File photo of Mother Teresa. Reuters

A group of around 40-50 nuns from different parts of the country will be present at the ceremony led by Missionaries of Charity Superior General Sister Mary Prema.

Besides Archbishop of Kolkata Thomas D'Souza, about 45 bishops from all over India are now in Vatican.

In March, Pope Francis had announced that the Mother, who spent 45 years serving the poor and sick on the streets in Kolkata, will be elevated to sainthood after the Church recognised two miracles attributed to her after her death.

To mark the occasion a series of events are being held in the city where the Mother lived and worked all her life.

At the Mother House here on Sunday, a special mass will be organised and the nuns have promised to celebrate the occasion with the poorest of the poor.

In 2003, Teresa was beatified by then Pope John Paul II in a fast-tracked process which is the first step to gaining Sainthood.

In 2002, the Vatican officially recognised a miracle she was said to have carried out after her death, namely the 1998 healing of a Bengali tribal woman, Monika Besra, who was suffering from an abdominal tumour.

The traditional canonisation procedure requires at least two miracles.

The second miracle was from Brazil, where a person had been healed miraculously as a result of her earlier prayers.