Mother Teresa, a nun who dedicated her life to helping the poor in India, will be canonized as a saint September 4, Pope Francis announced Tuesday.
The date falls on the eve of the anniversary of her death, which occurred on September 5, 1997.
In December, Pope Francis announced that Mother Teresa would be declared a saint after recognizing a second miracle attributed to her: the healing of a Brazilian man with multiple brain tumors after loved ones prayed to her, the Italian Catholic bishops’ association’s official newspaper Avvenire reported. That miracle occurred after her death.
A 30-year-old woman in Kolkata said she was cured of a stomach tumor after praying to Mother Teresa. A Vatican committee said it could find no scientific explanation for her healing and declared it a miracle.
Mother Teresa was born in 1910 in Albania and baptized Gonxha Agnes.
At age 18, she joined an Irish convent, where she received the name Sister Mary Teresa. Months later, she left for India, landing in Kolkata, the city then known as Calcutta, in January 1929. She taught at St. Mary’s School for girls.
There, she took her Final Profession of Vows and became Mother Teresa. Nearly 20 years later, during a train ride in India, she felt a calling from Jesus to care for the poor, her Vatican biography said. She established Missionaries of Charity to serve the poorest of all.
In 1948, she donned her iconic white sari with blue trim for the first time and walked out of her convent to start her life caring for the poor. She washed the wounded, cared for the sick and dying, and some of her former students joined her over time. She spread her work throughout India.
Mother Teresa won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979.
Pope John Paul II waived the requirement of waiting five years after a person’s death to pursue the path to sainthood and opened Mother Teresa’s Cause of Canonization less than two years after her death.