While doing a high school report on the life of Mother Teresa, I came to conclude several thoughts on the pain of being alone and feeling unwanted.
During her life, Mother Teresa did her best to ensure that dying patients in her Missionary houses of Calcutta were surrounded with love and care, especially the moments leading up to the time of their death.
She did this because she recognized each individual person, whether Muslim, Hindu, or Christian, as God’s Creation, worthy of human respect. Mother believed that the worst poverty a person could experience was to be considered invisible to one’s fellow humans, unloved and unwanted.
The care Mother Teresa showed to the destitute — by providing a bed to sleep in, food to eat, and medical supplies — was graciously accepted by the poor, and their gratitude could not be mistaken for anything otherwise.
In Kerry Walters’ book: St. Teresa of Calcutta – Missionary, Mother, Mystic, the author cites an instance in Mother’s life when she and her Sisters were looking through the streets of Calcutta for people who were dying. Mother Teresa had spoken of the occasion, saying:
“We picked up four people from the street, and one of them was in a most terrible condition – and I told the Sisters: ‘You take care of the other three, I take care of this one that looked worse’…I put her in bed, and there was such a beautiful smile on her face. She took hold of my hand, as she said one word only: Thank you – and she died.”
Mother Teresa was able to give comfort to the utterly destitute, despite not having modern appliances and technology at her disposal. These people were literally all alone, with not a friend in the world, dying on the streets. By doing her best with what she had, Mother made these people feel more loved and at peace than many people who have many modern accommodations today.
I have come to this conclusion from instances in life that I have witnessed myself.
There are many people in nursing homes that have many material comforts: heated and cooled rooms, television, warm food, usable plumbing…but many of them are not happy. They sit in front of windows much of the day…hoping…waiting for the possibility of a family member or friend coming to visit them…a son or daughter, nephew or niece.
I believe that it is situations like this that express the fact that material things of this world cannot fully satisfy man. People need to be shown Christian charity — Christ’s love. This is the only thing that can relieve the pain of loneliness.
So please, take a minute out of your day to acknowledge those in your life that you may not give much of your time to.
“A new commandment I give unto you: That you love one another, as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this shall all men know that you are my disciples, if you have love one for another.” (John 13:34-35)