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Mother Teresa's spirit can help fight pandemic: Cardinal Tagle

The UN established Sept. 5, the death anniversary of Mother Teresa, as the International Day of Charity in 2012

UCA News reporter

UCA News reporter

Updated: September 07, 2020 07:48 AM GMT
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Mother Teresa's spirit can help fight pandemic: Cardinal Tagle

A screen grab of Cardinal Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle,  the prefect of the Vatican Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, delivering the message for the  International Day of Charity on Sept. 5 (vaticannews.va)

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The International Day of Charity on Sept. 5, marking the death anniversary of St. Teresa of Kolkata, could help the world respond to the pandemic in a better way, says Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle,  the prefect of the Vatican Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples.

The ideals of St. Teresa, popularly known as Mother Teresa, and the   Missionaries of Charity congregation she founded, invite everyone "to do acts of charity to alleviate poverty and foster peace," he said.

A UN resolution, adopted on Dec. 17, 2012, established Sept. 5, the death anniversary of Mother Teresa, as the International Day of Charity and presented the saintly Catholic nun as a love model for those in need.

The UN said it chose the date to commemorate the death anniversary of Mother Teresa of Kolkata (Calcutta), who received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979 for work undertaken in the struggle to overcome poverty and distress, which also constitute a threat to peace.

In a video message published by the Vatican News, Cardinal Tagle said that the UN chose the date "to sensitize and mobilize people and organizations to help others through philanthropic activities."

Cardinal Tagle, also the President of Caritas Internationalis, said the spirit and example of Mother Teresa and the Missionaries of Charity could help us work better during the Covid-19 pandemic.

For the Church, the selection of Sept. 5 as International Day of Charity is "significant," the cardinal said.

St. Mother Teresa, who dedicated her life "to serve the Lord through the poor. The entire world recognized her charity work.

She is also the patron saints of Caritas Internationalis, Cardinal Tagle said. The service of charity has reached the poor across the world through the work of Missionaries of Charity

"We need today authentic charity from authentic persons more than ever," the cardinal said, noting that St. Mother Teresa believed in "small actions" of charity.

For  St. Mother Teresa, "charity consists of little acts done for other people's good. But actual acts of charity could come only from a person of charity, he said.

Human persons are created in God's image, and Mother Teresa allowed God, who is love, to "transform her very person into an instrument of God's charity for the poor."

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