Worthy of Imitation
By: Kayla Faherty
Do you struggle to find someone to look up to? Do you long for a positive role model? Do you want to get to know someone who can inspire you to live your best life? We all seek someone who has risen above, someone who persevered through adversity, someone noble, someone who truly loved others, someone who was unshaken by the world around them, someone who stood firm for what they knew to be right. There is true value in finding a solid role model. The more you get to know them the more you are challenged to follow your own path.
I have a companion, a close friend who walks alongside me on my journey of life. She is thoughtful, kind, generous, selfless, true, and loving. I was introduced to her long ago, when I was a young girl and she an old woman, but she walks with me still, watching over me and guiding me. I look up to her and seek out her words of inspiration, especially during times of uncertainty. We are very close, connected in many ways. I have never met her, and she passed away years ago, but I love her still, and aspire to be like her in many ways. I still call her Mother Teresa, and the world now recognizes her as Saint Teresa of Calcutta.
When I was young, I didn’t pay much attention to world events. But Mother Teresa was an influential figure who sparked my interest. I remember choosing her as the subject of several school projects. The more I learned about her, the more I realized how important her life’s work was. I was in sixth grade when she passed away, and I still remember being saddened by the news. Like many, I recognized the faith, hope, and most notably the love with which she lived her life. Her service to the poorest of the poor, all the while giving God the glory, really resonated with me. Her work inspired me and deepened my faith. Mother Teresa was a faithful servant of the Lord, and He used her to draw me closer to Himself. Ever since I first learned about the great work the Lord performed through her hands, I have grown much in my faith. He poured out a share of His love to Mother Teresa, and she shared it with those who were in most need.
The more I learned about her life, her interior struggles and her perseverance, the joy of being open to the will of God became something even I could aspire to. Trusting in Divine Providence and being generous with my time, talent, and money are two lessons I am still learning. My relationship with Jesus is deepening, and as a result my relationships with others as well. Being able to give the gift of myself has completely changed my life. I now choose love each morning and live my day-to-day life to serve the Lord. And the instrument God used to bring about this shift of perspective was Mother Teresa.
So when my first daughter was born, I honored Mother Teresa by giving her the middle name Teresa. And when my daughter was almost two years old and I was confirmed in the Catholic Church, I chose Blessed Mother Teresa as my patron. It was through the intercession of the Blessed Mother that Mother Teresa was one of the first Saints to embrace me as I was welcomed into the Communion of Saints. And it was through my heartfelt admiration of Mother Teresa that opened the door to getting to know some of her friends in heaven. There are quite a few Saints who have touched my life, and my first experience with Mother Teresa was the beginning.
I am discovering my place in the family of God. I am answering the call to holiness, that I myself may become a saint. I aim to become the best version of myself. This journey isn’t meant to be walked alone. The Lord still uses Mother Teresa to reveal Himself to me. As I grow in closer relationship with her, I realize that she is worthy of imitation. Through the Holy Spirit, she has encouraged me to allow God to grace me with an attitude bent towards charity and service. I hope to venerate Saint Teresa of Calcutta with my life, that I might honor her as she points me to God. For the love that the Lord poured out to her is the same love that He pours out to me. I am finding my own Calcutta, right where I am.
“In this life we cannot do great things. We can only do small things with great love."
Mother Teresa once said “In this life we cannot do great things. We can only do small things with great love.” Her message of love that was a small seed planted when I was a child has been taking root. The lives of the Saints can inspire us and encourage us on our journey. We are all called to holiness, and connecting with the Saints is a valuable process. Which Saints do you have a special affection for? How have they helped you during your life? Take a moment to thank them for their intercession. Saint Teresa of Calcutta, pray for us.