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Sunday, March 19, 2023

‘Mother’ Teresa – the real person behind the saintly facade

To a large number of people throughout the world Mother Teresa though still is portrayed as an “iconic saint”, in reality she was receiving millions of dollars by running a cult of suffering, stating ailing individuals must continue to suffer and endure pains as Jesus Christ did. She was also emotionally blackmailing those poor people who took shelter in her charity home and tried to convert the sick and baptized the dying. Through this evil tactic, Mother Teresa has not only converted thousands of people around the world, including Bharat into Christianity, she has caused serious harm to Hindu religion in particular as majority of her preys were Hindus. For this reason, several researchers branded Teresa as a “lying, thieving Albanian dwarf”.

In response to all the criticism, Mother Teresa allegedly said, “There is something beautiful in seeing the poor accept their lot, to suffer it like Christ’s Passion. The world gains much from their suffering”.

However, when it came to her own suffering, Mother Teresa apparently took a different stance. When she began experiencing severe heart problems, she received care in a modern American hospital. This is another example of mockery and falsehood of Teresa, who succeeded in fooling hundreds and thousands of people and targeted poor people in Kolkata and later got them converted to Christianity.

While neglecting the needs of the sick, Mother Teresa was also called out for rubbing elbows with several wealthy — and corrupt — world leaders.

This included Haitian dictator Jean-Claude Duvalier, who was eventually charged with crimes against humanity for his abuse of his fellow Haitians.

At one point, 60 Minutes released footage that showed Mother Teresa praising Duvalier’s wife Michele. In the footage, Mother Teresa said that she had “never seen the poor people being so familiar with their head of state as they were with her. It was a beautiful lesson for me”.

That wasn’t the only friendship that raised eyebrows. Mother Teresa also received US$1.25 million from her friend Charles Keating.

Charles Keating was one of the key figures behind the 1980s savings and loan crisis, brought about by housing market and loan speculation, which cost American taxpayers US$124 billion. And while he was on trial, Mother Teresa wrote to the judge presiding over his case — seeking clemency for him.

“I do not know anything about Mr. Charles Keating’s work or his business or the matters you are dealing with. I only know that he has always been kind and generous to God’s poor and always ready to help whenever there was a need. It is for this reason that I do not want to forget him now while he and his family are suffering”, Teresa wrote.

co-prosecutor of Keating, Paul Turley, deputy district attorney for Lon Angeles responded to Mother Teresa after his conviction stating:

“Mr. Keating was convicted of defrauding 17 individuals of more than $900,000,” he explained to her. “These 17 persons were representative of 17,000 individuals from whom Mr. Keating stole $252,000,000. The victims of Mr. Keating’s fraud come from a wide spectrum of society. Some were wealthy and well-educated. Most were people of modest means and unfamiliar with high finance. One was, indeed, a poor carpenter who did not speak English and had his life savings stolen by Mr. Keating’s fraud.

“The biblical slogan of your organization is As long as you did it to one of these My least brethren, you did it to Me’. The least’ of the brethren are among those whom Mr. Keating fleeced without flinching. As you well know, divine forgiveness is available to all, but forgiveness must be preceded by admission of sin. Not only has Mr. Keating failed to admit his sins and his crimes, he persists in self-righteously blaming others for his own misdeeds.

“You urge Judge Ito to look into his heart — as he sentences Charles Keating — and do what Jesus would do. I submit the same challenge to you. Ask yourself what Jesus would do if he were given the fruits of a crime; what Jesus would do if he were in possession of money that had been stolen; what Jesus would do if he were being exploited by a thief to ease his conscience?

“I submit that Jesus would promptly and unhesitatingly return the stolen property to its rightful owners. You should do the same. You have been given money by Mr. Keating that he has been convicted of stealing by fraud. Do not permit him the indulgence’ he desires. Do not keep the money. Return it to those who worked for it and earned it!

“If you contact me I will put you in direct contact with the rightful owners of the property now in your possession”.

Mother Teresa never responded to Paul Turley’s letter.

At the height of his success as a thief, Keating made donations to Mother Teresa of US$1 million dollars, according to the testimony of Arizona Senator Dennis DeConcini. Keating also granted her the use of his private jet. In return, Mother Teresa allowed Keating to make use of her prestige on several important occasions and gave him a personalized crucifix that he took everywhere with him.

Countless well-meaning Catholics gave money to Mother Teresa’s charitable organizations throughout the years, but many of them would never see their generous donations go toward good works.

A 1991 report in the German magazine Stern also estimated that only seven percent of the millions of dollars she received were used for charity.

Seven percent of what total figure, exactly? The world will never know.

Nirmala Joshi, the leader of Missionaries of Charity who succeeded Mother Teresa, said the donations were “countless”, and there was only one person with the actual numbers. “God knows”, Joshi said. “He is our banker”.

Mother Teresa became the subject of investigation when accounts of her dogmatic Catholicism began to circulate. Her reputation for aiding Kolkata’s poorest was undercut by persistent allegations of misuse of funds, poor medical treatments and religious evangelism in the institutions she founded.

Mother Teresa was intent on converting as many people to Catholicism as possible, even at the expense of the poor and sick. Teresa’s main objective was to attract and lure people towards religious conversion. Meaning, her charity in Kolkata was purely a Catholic conversion machine. Her services were not based on love of God, instead it was aimed at increasing the size of the Catholic populace in Bharat.

Like those missionaries, conversion — the Church’s key to survival — was Mother Teresa’s primary goal. And in the context of the Catholic Church, charity can be viewed as a self-interested act.

“It’s good to work for a cause with selfless intentions. But Mother Teresa’s work had an ulterior motive, which was to convert the person who was being served to Christianity. In the name of service, religious conversions were made”, said Mohan Bhagwat, Sarsanghchalak of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).

When The New York Times reviewed the British documentary Hell’s Angel, a film that highlighted some of Mother Teresa’s flaws, the paper concluded that she was “less interested in helping the poor than in using them as an indefatigable source of wretchedness on which to fuel the expansion of her fundamentalist Roman Catholic beliefs”. Though Mother Teresa’s medical centers were meant to heal people, her patients were often subjected to conditions that made them even sicker. In the same documentary, an Indian journalist compared Mother Teresa’s flagship location for “Missionaries of Charity” to photographs that he had seen of the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in Nazi Germany.

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Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury
Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury
Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury is an internationally acclaimed multi-award-winning anti-militancy journalist, writer, research-scholar, counterterrorism specialist and editor of Weekly Blitz. Follow him on Twitter @Salah_Shoaib


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