‘Mother Teresa could be the patron saint of travellers’
Mother Teresa, the founder of Missionaries of Charity, who dedicated her life to the care of the “poorest of the poor”, will be canonized by the Vatican on September 4. Ahead of her canonization, Father Brian Kolodiejchuk, who has been the postulator for Mother’s canonization cause speaks to HT from Rome. Excerpts from a telephonic interview. The first step is when people sense there is something holy about the person. Like in Mother Teresa’s case, people felt she was a holy person. After that the Bishop of the diocese in which the person died has to petition that a cause for Beatification and canonization be initiated. If no objection is made by the Vatican, the process is started, after which the person is addressed as a ‘Servant of God’. In Mother’s case that petition had to come from Kolkata. Usually there has to be a five year gap between the person’s death and when the petition can be made. But in Mother’s case the Pope waived off three years, so the petition was moved and accepted in 1999. I was appointed postulator in March 1999. Oh, she could be patron saint of women who are having trouble conceiving. Even during her life couples who were having trouble having a baby would come to her. And she would take a medallion of Mother Mary and tell them to pray to Mother Mary saying, “Mary, Mother of Jesus, give us a child.” And their prayer would be answered. She could also be a patron saint of travelers, she did so much travelling herself. In fact, ever since her death I have always prayed to her to take care of my luggage whenever I have travelled and I have never had any trouble with luggage. It hasn’t ever been lost or delayed or anything.