Mother Teresa’s birthday not forgotten in Kolkata

By Anne Nigli, 27 August 2019
Mother Teresa of Calcutta at a pro-life meeting on July 13, 1986 in Bonn, Germany. Image: Túrelio/Wikimedia Commons.


Missionaries of Charity nuns celebrated the birthday of their founder St. Mother Teresa of Calcutta three years after her canonisation, breaking a Catholic convention.

Archbishop Thomas D’Souza of Calcutta led a Mass on Aug. 26 marking the nun’s 109th birth anniversary in the headquarters of Missionaries of Charity in the eastern city of Kolkata, formerly called Calcutta.

Soon after that Mass, some 300 nuns and novices sang “Happy Birthday” at the tomb of their founder, popularly known as Mother Teresa.

The saint’s birthday was a major celebration in the house when she was alive, and the nuns continue to celebrate it even after her death in 1997 and canonisation in 2016.

In Catholic tradition, only a saint’s feast day — normally the anniversary of death — is celebrated, not the birth anniversary. The day of death is believed to be the day of a saint attaining a heavenly life.

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With thanks to UCA News and Anne Nigli, where this article originally appeared.


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