By Ayleen López
I wonder how Saint Teresa would act in these times of pandemic, with so many people suffering from a disease that we hardly know and which affects the entire world? COVID-19 has killed almost 500,000 people, out of the 7.8 billion who make up the world population. Our world faces a significant health challenge. Our economic future is uncertain, but something that always keeps us going is our faith.
Saint Teresa taught us with her example of how to care for the sick and needy, as only she knew how full of love and faith. Today more than ever, her teaching shows us the way to continue filling our hearts with respect for our neighbor, and give the best of ourselves to our brothers and sisters. We all live on the same planet, sharing the same land and the fruits that spring from it. We may look different, we may speak different languages, but in the end, we all carry the same blood, no matter our race, color, or gender. In this time of the pandemic, we must together move forward with faith.
During Mass on April 2, Pope Francis’ homily reflected on St. Teresa’s work: “We ask St. Teresa of Calcutta to reawaken in us the sense of closeness to so many people who, in society, in normal life, are hidden but, like the homeless, in a moment of crisis, are pointed out in this way,” Mother Teresa’s words on poverty should inspire us all. “We think sometimes that poverty is only being hungry, naked, and homeless. The poverty of being unwanted, unloved, and uncared for is the greatest poverty. We must start in our own homes to remedy this kind of poverty.”
The love of life and neighbor that Mother Teresa showed the world, giving the best of herself to the suffering brother or sister, is the best legacy of life that a human being can leave in this world. Like her today, many men and women sacrifice their lives to save the lives of others. That infinite love for others should move us in these difficult times. I thank Mother Teresa for her teaching on the love of neighbor and her unwavering faith. That beautiful gift of love has impacted and guided millions of people around the world to give their best in challenging times. I hope that Mother Teresa’s love and faith will guide and accompany us always in this journey and especially in these times of pandemic.