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, human beings are faced with many choices; some of these choices are simple while others are tough. The decision to choose our role models is one of these choices that we have to make. The kind of persons we chose as our role models, or idols in extreme cases, is guided by different inclinations. Those who desire fame and publicity are likely to fall for politicians and celebrities for role models. Others, however, may be inclined to simple things in life; such things as kindness, charity, and selflessness. On my part, I belong to the former class; that is the class of persons who are attracted to those who offer their lives for the development and betterment of humanity. In that regard, I must admit, I have always admired Mother Teresa. Mother Teresa, it must be noted, was a simple yet very famous person. As a matter of fact, she beat all the odds to become a favorite of many even when she lacked celebrity or political qualities. It must be noted that Mother Teresa was recognized among all circles and this made her win the Nobel peace prize in 1979 (Weiss 13). This prize, as many will agree with me, is largely reserved for politicians, economists, and persons who have made tremendous discoveries. Mother Teresa, however, was none of these but the committee that was charged with the role of electing the person who had made great efforts to bring peace and tranquility in the world was convinced beyond doubt that the humble lady deserved the prize more than any other nominee. Today’s young people may not have had the chance of seeing mother Teresa in person and so they wonder who this woman was.
Surname2 Mother Teresa, unlike most famous persons of the present world, was born of a poor family of five; she was the youngest of the three children that her parents were blessed with (Weiss, 23). She was born in a small town of Macedonia in 1910. Both of her parents were of Albanian descent, and so were Mother Teresa and her siblings. From an early age, Mother Teresa felt that she was called to serve the poor. In 1928, aged 18, she united with Sisters of Loreto, a community of Irish nuns. She was later, in 1931, sent to India where she took her vows as a nun. Between 1931 and1948, she accepted an invitation to teach at St Mary’s School in Calcutta, India. During her teaching life, she felt that she had not been called to be a teacher. She thus requested her superiors for permission to go and do what she had been called to do; that is, charity work. Her superiors did not object to her request and since then Mother Teresa did not look back (Weiss 57). Her charity work, however, proved from the beginning to be an uphill task. Immediately after leaving St Mary’s she tried to open schools in Indian slums but this objective proved difficult to accomplish. Mother relied on Divine Providence. As time passed, funds were forth coming as her mission received support from volunteers and nongovernmental organizations. With all the support, she expanded her work from other parts outside India (Weiss 37). In 1950, Mother Teresa went a step further and requested the Holy See (Vatican) to grant her permission to start her own religious order. Her requested was granted as fast as it had been requested (Weiss 48). She named her order “Missionaries of Charity”. The order, since then, comprises of women who lead religious lives (meaning that they are not married), but who, most importantly, are ready to devote their lives to caring for the less fortunate, the unloved and the unwanted. At the time of her death in 1997, her religious order had grown extensively and enjoyed huge following from all parts of the world including Asia, Africa, America and Australia (Weiss 89).
Surname3 In her absence, Mother Teresa remains to be one of those noble persons that people of all ages, races and creed admire. On my part, I still admire the character of Mother Teresa because she was splendid and I have not yet found or seen another person, living at present, who has gone to the extremes that she went to. It is important to note that she is not popular because she founded a religious order but she sacrificed her life and became a voice and hope for the hopeless. At her time, though nothing has changed now, the society was full of capitalists and individualistic persons who cared most for their selfish needs at the expense of those of other people. As people strive to prosper and achieve their own ends, they seem to forget that there are others in the society who are not as fortunate. It may be argued that the rich or the prosperous are under no obligation to be kind to the less fortunate. This argument is very correct but it defies the law of humanity which requires every human being to be their brothers’ keepers. Even if that law was not to be followed, at least, the law of justice which requires equitable distribution of resources due to a country, region or state should be applied. It is a fact that nations have central governments whose role is to ensure equitable distribution of resources either in lump sum or through projects aimed at uplifting the well being of their citizens. If these governments were to play their role effectively, the social problem of poverty could be greatly reduced, if not eradicated. The most unfortunate fact is that these ideals are far from being realized. That being the case, the world needs people who can stand up and fight for the rights of the marginalized, the poor, and the less privileged just like mother Teresa did during her time on earth. Although persons who are selfless with their material wealth are in greatly needed in order to fulfill the material needs of the poor, persons who are ready and willing to offer moral support are needed even more. On her part, Mother Teresa would say that this world is in great hunger for love than love of bread (Weiss 104). What the humble nun meant to say is that although hunger
Surname4 and famine are a reality, there is another great need, and that is love for one another, which is conspicuously lacking in all societies. Every time I reflect on her words concerning hunger for love and bread I realize that she was right. If people could love each other sincerely, then other forms of hunger and poverty would seize to exist. The extremely rich would nations would share their excesses with the poor nations while rich individuals would readily assume philanthropist positions in their respective societies. If that were to happen, all forms of hunger and poverty would be completely eradicated from the face of the planet (Weiss, 129). In wrapping up, I reiterate that persons are driven by different inclinations in choosing their role models. On my part, I have always admired and chosen Mother Teresa as a person worthy of my admiration. She was a humble nun born from a poor family but in her humbleness she rose to win one of the most coveted prizes, Nobel peace prize. She was propelled to her status not by activism, politics, or showbiz, but by her simplicity and selflessness. She, almost like Christ but in her own way, laid down her life for the sake of others. She did what others had failed to do. While the society she lived in despised the poor and the sick, she chose to show them love. She was never afraid of being infected with diseases when she attended to the sick or from being ridiculed by others, but she stood her ground and did what she knew was the right thing to do. Although some of the sick persons she looked after would eventually die, she ensured that they died knowing that somebody loved them; they would die with smiles on their faces. Though she has passed on to the other world, her memories remain with us and she will always be in our minds. Rest in peace Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta, you are the person I admire most.
Surname5 Works Cited Weiss, Ellen. Mother Teresa: A Life of Kindness. Minneapolis: Bellwether Media Inc, 2007.
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