SOUVENIRS AND RELIC – Veanna Fores and Pat P. Daza were recently in Rome and other parts of Europe. They gifted the “dabarkads” with rosaries and other religious items, souvenirs from the recent canonization of Mother Teresa of Calcutta (originally from what is now part of Macedonia).
All those religious items were blessed by Pope Francis in Vatican, during the Mass for Mother Teresa. Veanna would rather not confirm this, but heard that her group had seats very near the altar as her father, Dr. Fores, was close to Mother Teresa and the nuns of Missionaries of Charity.
At the dinner of the “dabarkads,” Veanna also brought a framed letter of Mother Teresa addressed to Dr. Fores. Now that letter is a treasured relic. Lawrence Tan led the thanksgiving prayers before dinner.
Veanna brought jamon serrano and iberico from Barcelona, the best in the world. Pat P. recalled that all over Italy and France the military men with high-powered guns were all around. Terrorist threats were – still are – ever present.
Well, we live in dangerous times.
OTHER TERESAS – Come to think of it, there are two other famous Teresas in heaven, Teresa of Avila (Spain) and Teresa of Lisieux (France).
Somehow all three Teresas are connected with each other.
Teresa of Avila, the great Spanish mystic and doctor of the church, reformed the Carmelite Order. Therese of Lisieux was a Carmelite nun. Teresa of Calcutta took her religious name after Therese of Lisieux.
The saint from Avila is known as Santa Teresa de Jesus. The saint from Lisieux is Santa Teresita del Niño Jesus (Child Jesus) and Little Flower. Mother Teresa is the Saint of the Gutter or Slums.
There must be other saints named Teresa, but those three are the most familiar to us.
MEMORABLE – Forgive this columnist for being personal and redundant.
As I’ve written several times before one of my most memorable moments was seeing Mother Teresa by chance (with Ricky Lo) in 1995 along Roxas Boulevard, two years before she died in Calcutta and was given a state funeral. Learned that from the airport, she declined to ride in a limo and instead joined the other nuns in a Ford Fierra. Mother Teresa brought her hands together and bowed to us smiling.
Told Ricky, “Nakakahiya, di ba? Tayo naka-aircon car pero si Mother Teresa nasa jeep na mainit.”
By the way, I’ve visited Avila and Lisieux.