Mother Teresa, someone whose name is synonymous to love, compassion, and selflessness, was born on this day 111 years ago. Mother Teresa was a ray of hope for countless orphans, homeless and needy as she gave away all her life for the service of humanity. Owing to her selfless contributions to the world, Mother Teresa became an inspiration for many. 

Today, on her 111th birth anniversary, here are some facts about the woman who will continue to inspire posterity.

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Mother Teresa early life

Mother Mary Teresa was born on August 26, 1910, in Skopje, North Macedonia - a country to the east of Albania and north of Greece - although she was called Gonxha Agnes at the time.

Mother Teresa decided to become a missionary at the age of 12 and from the very beginning, she wanted to serve in India. At the age of 18, she left her home to join the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Ireland and start her mission to serve mankind.

It is where she received the name Sister Mary Teresa after St Thérèse of Lisieux.

Why did Mother Teresa choose India

Mother Teresa came to India in 1929 at the age of 19 years and began her mandatory Christian religious order training in Darjeeling.

She served as a teacher at the Loreto convent school in Entally, eastern Calcutta, now Kolkata, for nearly 20 years and was appointed as its headmistress in 1944. Though Teresa enjoyed teaching, she was extremely disturbed by the sight of poverty that she saw in Calcutta.

The Bengal famine of 1943, however, shook Mother Teres to the core as it had brought death and misery to the city, followed by  Hindu-Muslim violence in the state.

It is believed that Mother Teresa experienced a call from the almighty on September 10, 1946, when she was traveling to the Loreto convent in Darjeeling by train from Calcutta for her annual retreat. It made Mother Teresa realise that she was actually born to help the poor and needy living in roads and slums.

Mother Teresa began her missionary work with the poor in 1948 and she replacing her traditional attire with a simple, white cotton sari with a blue border and the rest is history.


Mother Teresa was given the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize in 1979. Upon receiving the prize, she said she was "happy to receive it in the name of the hungry, and homeless.

To celebrate Mother Teresa's Nobel honour, India organised a massive dinner. But Mother asked it to be cancelled and the money spent on the celebration to be used for the service of the poor.

Mother also received a Bharat Ratna for her selfless service in India. 

Some inspirational quotes by Mother Teresa

Peace begins with a smile.

There are no great things, only small things with great love. Happy are those.

* Peace begins with a smile.

* If you judge people, you have no time to love them.

* Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless.

* Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.

* Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not yet come. We have only today. Let us begin.

* If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.