CATHOLIC NEWS OF THE WEEK . Sunday, 1 September 2019

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A weekend to show off Mother Teresa’s charism

HONG KONG (SE): An exhibition on the life of Mother Teresa of Kolkata was held from September 3 to 4 at the Caritas Institute of Higher Education, Tseung Kwan O, to help people to understand and appreciate the life of the woman known to the world as the Saint of the Poor better.

Organised by the Ad Hoc Committee for the Jubilee of Mercy, it featured the foundation years of the Missionaries of Charity and the services to the poor that the congregation developed across the world.

Bishop Joseph Ha Chi-shing, the chairperson of the ad hoc committee, said in blessing the exhibition that Mother Teresa was canonised in recognition of having lived according to the will of God.

He added that through the virtue of her life, she set a good example and he hoped that the exhibition would inspire more people to follow her example and develop a caring attitude towards the marginalised and the poor.

Bishop Michael Yeung Ming-cheung commented that by showing the mercy of God in a concrete way to the poor, Mother Teresa not only fed people, but helped them to regain their dignity as human beings.

Bishop Yeung added that she saw the presence of God in people who were dying on the streets of Kolkata. He called this a pertinent lesson for the Church, as one problem it faces today is that people tend to focus on their own issues and forget the presence of God.

He said that it is only when people can experience God’s love that they can broaden their vision and look beyond themselves to embrace the needy.

A number of relics of Mother Teresa were on display, including locks of her hair, the sari she wore as a habit, eating utensils and other things.

The exhibit also included photographs of her visits to Hong Kong, handwritten memos and an application form she filled out when applying to go to China in the 1980s.

A banner inscribed with a quotation from John Cardinal Tong Hon in honour of Mother Teresa “the carrier of God’s tender and merciful love” in Chinese calligraphy was also on display.

The cardinal attended the canonisation ceremony in Rome on September 4.

Sister John Vianny Pyloth, the regional superior of the Missionaries of Charity in Hong Kong, said she felt blessed to have had the opportunity to meet Mother Teresa.

She explained that her deep love for God and for people, as well as her dedication to prayer, has left a deep impression on her.

The exhibition was sponsored by the Society of St. Vincent de Paul Central Council Hong Kong. The preparation work to put the exhibition together started in January this year and over 150 volunteers came to help out over the two days for which it ran.

Garley Wong Ching-wan, the president of the society, said she could feel the selfless love of Mother Teresa through the various exhibits, which depicted her service of the poorest of the poor.

During a live streamed telecast of the canonisation ceremony at the Caritas Institute of Higher Education on September 4, Sukrutha Rozario continuously waved a flag bearing Mother Teresa’s face.

Rozario told the Kung Kao Po that she lived in Kolkata when she was a child and had meet her, as well as many of the sisters of the Missionaries of Charity.

She explained that she is happy to have a contemporary saint and is inspired by her motto of doing small things with great love.

Stephania Ling Kwan-wai, a lay missionary from Hong Kong who has been working with the Missionaries of Charity in Kolkata for some years, attended their celebrations in the capital city of Bengal state.

She described the mood of the day as festive pointing out that the celebrations were joined by people of all faith persuasions and none.

“Although the newly canonised sister did not change the religious belief of the people here, she changed their hearts,” Ling told the Kung Kao Po.

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