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By Don Boys, Ph.D.
On the twentieth anniversary of “Mother” Teresa’s death, it is noteworthy that the Washington Post, and the British medical journal Lancet, Showtime, and even Roman Catholic media were critical of “Mother” Teresa, sometimes unfairly in my opinion!
The Washington Post reported of Teresa, “Her saintly reputation was gained for aiding Kolkata’s poorest of the poor, yet it was undercut by persistent allegations of misuse of funds, poor medical treatments and religious evangelism in the institutions she founded.” However, in her defense, what is wrong with her religious evangelism? After all, she was a Catholic nun! Not only is the Washington Post guilty of fake news, it also has an anti-religious agenda.
Moreover, the British medical journal Lancet published a critical account of the care provided in Teresa’s facilities in 1994, repeating what many others have reported. Many former volunteers have testified of patients receiving no pain medicine and nuns washing needles in cold water to be used again!
It has been suggested that the Roman Church used Teresa’s image of compassion to support Catholicism and to distract from the priest pedophilia scandals around the world. I’m not sure that is a legitimate criticism.
Teresa was strongly criticized, even by some of the Roman Catholic media, when she endorsed Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi’s suspension of civil liberties in 1975. Teresa said of Gandhi’s India, “People are happier. There are more jobs. There are no strikes.” She was often careless in her statements.
Penn and Teller’s Showtime show whose title is obscene did an episode titled “Holier than Thou” in 2005 that criticized Teresa, Gandhi, and the Dalai Lama! Their main concern was her association with Keating and the Duvalier family as well as the quality of medical care given in her homes. That complaint has been made by many.
To her credit, Teresa was a long-time anti-abortionist and, after winning the Nobel Prize in 1979, she said in her acceptance speech that the “greatest destroyer of peace is abortion.” She also angered Bill and Hillary Clinton when she spoke at the National Prayer Breakfast in Washington in February 1994, where she argued that abortion was a mother murdering her own child! Peggy Noonan, the former speechwriter of former President Ronald Reagan, wrote that Bill and Hillary “sat there, in the glare of the hot lights, all eyes in the crowd fixed upon them, as they tried not to move or be noticed, conspicuous in their lack of response, clearly uncomfortable as the applause raged on.” Bill, Hillary, and Al Gore were as uncomfortable as a dog in hot ashes.
Teresa had theological problems as well as problems with principle. She was asked if she ever converted people (or only fed the hungry, lifted the poor, etc.) and she replied, “Of course I convert. I convert you to be a better Hindu or a better Muslim or a better Protestant. Once you’ve found God, it’s up to you to decide how to worship him.” That is heresy. No real Christian believes that.
But then, maybe I was correct on a London talk show when I suggested that she was not a Christian but only a Catholic. (Just as there are many Baptists who are not Christians.) Following her death, her letters to various confessors of the past 60 years were read and caused a major stir world-wide. Author Rev. Brian Kolodiejchuk revealed Teresa’s emptiness since “the last nearly half-century of her life she felt no presence of God whatsoever.” He adds, “Neither in her heart or in the Eucharist.”
Teresa expressed her anguish, doubt, and fears when she bemoaned the “dryness,” “darkness,” “loneliness” and “torture” she was undergoing. The author wrote, “She [Teresa] compares the experience to hell and at one point says it has driven her to doubt the existence of heaven and even of God.”
In one letter Teresa wrote, “Where is my Faith — even deep down right in there is nothing, but emptiness & darkness — My God — how painful is this unknown pain — I have no Faith.” This was expressed by a woman who became a “saint” in 2016, but I am a Baptist who became a saint the day I trusted Christ. Furthermore, I have never had a similar dark, foreboding experience in over 65 years of being a Christian.
She lived in a period of darkness all her life and cried, “If there be no God — there can be no soul — if there is no Soul then Jesus — You also are not true.” As she smiled to the world, she wrote to another confessor, “I have come to love the darkness.” John 3 tells us that men love darkness rather than light because their deeds are evil.
My critics will be angry that I did not call her Mother Teresa but she was not my mother. My mother was Emma and while she was not an activist in the slums of Zanesville, nor did she lift the sick and poor from the gutters, she was a godly woman who knew Christ as her Savior. I am convinced she is in Heaven.
I’m not positive where Teresa is today.
Boys’ new book Muslim Invasion: The Fuse is Burning! was published by Barbwire Books; to get your copy, click here. An eBook edition is also available.
(Dr. Don Boys is a former member of the Indiana House of Representatives; ran a large Christian school in Indianapolis, wrote columns for USA Today for eight years; authored 16 books and hundreds of columns and articles for Internet and print media publications; defended his beliefs on hundreds of talk shows. These columns go to newspapers, magazines, television, and radio stations and may be used without change from title through the end tag. His web sites are www.cstnews.com and www.Muslimfact.com and www.thegodhaters.com. Contact Don for an interview or talk show.)
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