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Canonized by Pope Francis in 2016, Saint Teresa of Calcutta had a long life of devotion to Christianity and to the poor.
Every September 4th, the world commemorates a saint of the modern times, a catholic nun, a kind Albanian woman, a humble servant of those in need. Saint Mother Teresa of Calcutta is internationally recognized as a symbol of human kindness and devotion. Countless squares are named after her, along with many other monuments and national decorations, honoring this woman who from a small country went on to achieve grand, some would say miraculous, accomplishments. In 2016, 19 years after her death, Mother Teresa of Calcutta was canonized as the Saint of the Gutters by Pope Francis in a solemn mass within the walls of the Vatican.
The Vatican highly valued Mother Teresa’s position as a humble servant of God. The Members of the Missionaries of Charity Order, established by her in 1950, and the House of the Missionaries of Charity in India were official stops for some of the most prominent figures of the last century. Her iconic dress, a white nun’s habit with decorative blue stripes, became forever linked to Mother Teresa and thousands of missionaries wear it to continue her legacy.
The Peace Nobel Prize Winner was born on August 26th, 1910 in what is present-day Skopje. From a very young age, she became devoted to catholic service in one of the poorest regions of the world, Calcutta in India. Her real name was Anjezë Gonxhe Bojaxhi and she was raised in a catholic Albanian household. Her mother and sister passed away during Communism. Nevertheless, the strict anti-religion regime never allowed Mother Teresa to visit her own isolated country. Her very first visit to the country was in 1989, as the end of Communism was inching its way into Albania. With the official fall of the regime after 1990, Mother Teresa could finally freely visit. Her first post-Communism visit was in 1993, 4 years prior to her death, for the establishment of the Mother Teresa Order, where she was also accompanied by Pope John Paul II. Nowadays, her statue, created by the famed Albanian sculptor Thoma Thomai, graces the entrance of Albania’s national airport, named after her, as is the central square of the capital of Tirana.
Gjergj Kastrioti Skënderbeu, the quintessential hero who never forgets his homeland and returns to protect it, is Albania’s point of pride and inspiration. Celebrated across Europe for his legendary resistance against the Ottoman invasion, Skanderbeg’s very particular and epic story of triumph has, throughout the years, assumed the form of a legend. Gjergj Kastrioti is [...]