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"Mother Teresa of Kolkata taught me about life and love"

Mrs Teresa Sarkar with Missionaries of Charity nuns and others (Photo supplied)

Teresa Sarkar, 48, is the mother of two daughters who live in Kolkata, the City of Joy, in the West Bengal state of India. 

She prepared to mark the death anniversary of Mother Teresa of Kolkata, now known as St. Teresa of Kolkata, which falls on September 5. 

Sarkar visited the tomb of St. Teresa at Mother House on September 5 to pay her tribute and pray for her family and her children.

Sarkar was passionately talking about Mother Teresa, claiming she was "Mother’s daughter." 

When asked why she is so passionate about Mother Teresa. She readily obliged and narrated her story. 

Ms. Sarkar lost her mother at a very young age. Her father, finding it difficult to manage the young child, decided to entrust her to Mother Teresa at the age of four in 1979. The mother in turn brought the child to "Sishu Bhavan" (children’s home) located at A.J.C. Bose Road, near Mother House (headquarters of Missionaries of Charity nuns). 

Once her legal documents were ready, Ms. Sarkar was sent to Khari Boarding School, located close to the Sunderbans in the south of West Bengal. She studied at this village school from grade 1 to 4. 

After that, she was brought back to Kolkata and was admitted into Loreto St. Mary’s (Bengali medium) School in Motijheel. Incidentally, it is at Motijheel that Mother Teresa started her work in the 1950s, teaching poor children. Ms. Sarkar, on the other hand, was uninterested in her studies and thus failed to complete grade ten. 

Wedding of Mrs Teresa Sarkar (Photo supplied)

Mother Teresa sent her for skills training after noticing her lack of interest in studying. Sarkar learned tailoring from Lavinia School and housekeeping from Kenilworth Hold, Kolkata. She joined the staff of the Shanti Dan community of Missionaries of Charity, Kolkata.

While at Shanti Dan, Sister Milani, MC, arranged her marriage with Michael Sarkar. And they got married on December 27, 1991. They started a new life with their mother's blessings. They have two daughters – Deepanjali Sarkar and Christina Sarkar. Both were educated at Loreto Entally Covent School. Deepanjali also completed her Teachers' Training Course (TTC) from Loreto House. Both of them are now teachers.

Ms. Sarkar attributes all these blessings that she received to St. Teresa of Kolkata.

In Deepanjali Sarkar's words, "I was brought up by the nuns of Shanti Dan. I spent my childhood days there under the loving care of the Missionaries of Charity nuns. They also helped me in my studies." 

"Whatever I am today is because of Mother Teresa and her sisters. On this special day, I pay my hearty tribute to Mother Teresa. For me, Shanti Dan is like my grandmother’s house, and Mother Teresa is my grandmother."

Ms. Sarkar says, "Love has to start with one's family, and that is my guiding light in my family life." 

"My family is a gift from my mother. To the world, I know she is Saint Teresa of Kolkata, but to me, she is my mother who taught me what I know about life and love," concluded Ms. Sarkar, trying to control her emotions. - Teresa Rozario, RVA Bengali


Radio Veritas Asia (RVA), a media platform of the Catholic Church, aims to share Christ. RVA started in 1969 as a continental Catholic radio station to serve Asian countries in their respective local language, thus earning the tag “the Voice of Asian Christianity.”  Responding to the emerging context, RVA embraced media platforms to connect with the global Asian audience via its 21 language websites and various social media platforms.