One of the most beloved figures in the Catholic Church in the 20th century, Blessed Teresa of Calcutta, still commonly known as Mother Teresa, founded the Missionaries of Charity in 1950. Her work among the poor and forsaken in India was a shining example in the modern world of how the Gospel of Christ compels the Christian to serve his fellow man in ways that the world would never value.
At the Triumph of the Cross Conference in Asheville, North Carolina, in September 2008, Fr. Ray Williams told a story about Mother Teresa that illustrates this point well.
One day, a cameraman was filming Mother Teresa for a documentary, while she was caring for some of the most wretched of the poor of Calcutta. As she cleaned the sores of one man, wiping up the pus and bandaging his wounds, the cameraman blurted out, "I wouldn't do that if you gave me a million dollars." To which Mother Teresa replied, "Neither would I."
That spirit of Christian charity suffuses this prayer, which Mother Teresa prayed daily. And this prayer reminds us that the reason we care for the bodily needs of others is that our love for them makes us long to bring their souls to Christ. We act as Christ did so that others may not only hear the words of Christ through the preaching of His Gospel but may see Him in everything we do. "Faith without works is dead": but faith that results in works can plant the seeds of faith in others.
The Daily Prayer of Mother Teresa
Dear Jesus, help me to spread Thy fragrance everywhere I go. Flood my soul with Thy spirit and love. Penetrate and possess my whole being so utterly that all my life may only be a radiance of Thine. Shine through me and be so in me that every soul I come in contact with may feel Thy presence in my soul. Let them look up and see no longer me but only Jesus. Stay with me and then I shall begin to shine as you shine, so to shine as to be a light to others. Amen.