Mother Teresa’s life: The happiest day

It’s been said that saints often come in pairs.

Saints Peter and Paul, Mary and Joseph, Francis and Clare, and Louis and Zelie Martin are just a handful of such saints, coupled together through marriage or friendship. Perhaps the best-known modern saintly pair of friends would be Mother Teresa and John Paul II, whose lives intersected many times during her time as Mother Superior of the Missionaries of Charity, and his pontificate. When John Paul II came to visit her home in the heart of the slums in Kolkata in 1986, Mother Teresa called it “the happiest day of my life.”

When he arrived, Mother Teresa climbed up into the white popemobile and kissed the ring of the Bishop of Rome, who then kissed the top of Mother’s head, a greeting they would exchange almost every time they met.

After their warm hello, Mother took John Paul II to her Nirmal Hriday (Sacred Heart) home, a home for the sick and the dying she had founded in the 1950s.