Mother Teresa’s Dark Night of the Soul

The Book, Mother Teresa * Come Be My Light is a collection of her letters and her journals, which she had wanted burned when she died. Through them we see her terrible interior struggle with despair and feelings of abandonment by God.
She had mystical experiences and years of a sense of God’s presence when she was struggling to get permission and the means for the ministry she knew God was asking of her. But once she actually begins working with the poorest of the poor, she loses those, and not only feels abandoned, but sometimes even doubts the reality of God.
In her uphill battle to get permission from Church Authorities all the way up to the Pope, she harasses them incredibly, all the while saying, “I accept your authority and your decision. But could you hurry, because this is God’s call and people are being lost.”  I love that.
She says that she has no ego left, just her desire to love God more than anyone ever has. Hmm. I’m not sure that’s not a form of ego, but it beats heck out of most forms.She is honest with her Spiritual Directors about her spiritual darkness, but fakes it with her community for fear she will damage their faith.
At eighty years of age, she never slows down in her exhausting physical ministry and even after winning the Nobel Peace Prize, she still humbly does dishes and cleans along with the other sisters in her community.
All the time she is without faith, joy, or even meaningful prayer, she is having tremendous success in her ministry and accolades from the world. But she is only able to go through the motions, heart-broken, doing her duty by fulfilling her promises to a God that seems to be gone.
That seems to me to be more awesome, than her mystical experiences or winning the Nobel Prize.
And it confirms what my minister answered one day when I asked him, “What’s it all about?”
He replied quickly with great assurance, “Perseverance.”

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About Eileen

Mother of five, grandmother of eleven, great-grandmother of seven, 1955 -1959 Rice University in Houston, TX. Taught primary grades; Was Associate Post Director of Religious Education at Ft. Campbell, KY; Consultant on the Myers/Briggs Type Indicator; Presently part time Administrative Assistant/Bookkeeper for Architect husband of fifty-seven years. Blog: Laughter: Carbonated Grace

Posted on February 26, 2013, in Answered Prayer, Love, Spiritual and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. http://newauthoronamazon.wordpress.com

    I have met Mother Teresa personally myself and would often stare into her face .. so deeply wrinkled and etched with a sadness difficult to explain. Its as if she had taken on the problems of the world on her own shoulders and it was a very big cross to bear. I never saw her smile much in any of her photos or when she was in the news. You see I grew up Calcutta and was a girl guide and we were then called to help out at times. On one occasion I had to literally beg her to write an autograph for me but she would just give out medals. Then one day she agreed and I had this teeny tiny paper on which she wrote God Bless.

    • How wonderful to meet her, but even more to be able to help in her ministry. I would love to hear more about your life and experiences. Do you have a book available on Amazon?

      • http://newauthoronamazon.wordpress.com

        Yes I do have a book available on Amazon … its title MasterMind … a gift of my 6th sense teaching us how to live the most beautiful life possible.
        My life’s experiences are however written on my several blogs and they are free to be read by all.

  2. So true, Eileen. It is when we feel abandoned by God that we show our true colors. Mother Teresa persevered to the end and became an example for us all. Thank you for sharing. {{{hugs}}} Kozo

  3. I knew about this – what an amazing saint – she truly is, and in India, they consider her a saint – she persevered in spite of the dark night…she is my hero.

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