Sister Marie Joel, MC, tells visitors about the life of St. Teresa, founder of the Missionaries of Charity.
RaÚl Ayrala/The Catholic Voice
St. Teresa exhibits —and her Sisters —share her story
When Sister Marie Joel was among the novices at the Missionaries of Charity in Calcutta, she could count on, each morning, to have the hand of the mother general touch her head.
"God bless you," Mother Teresa would say to her.
It was an act Mother Teresa would repeat with each of the 300 novices, no matter how tired her arm might become.
Sister Marie Joel, MC, was among the four sisters in the distinctive white-and-blue habits who offered blessings to visitors to an international traveling exhibition on the life of St. Teresa of Kolkata, which stopped at the Cathedral of Christ the Light from Oct. 2 to 9.
In the cathedral's Chapel of the All Saints, a relic of the saint, who was canonized by Pope Francis on Sept. 4, was on display. In a gold reliquary, there was a drop of her blood.
A display case held objects of everyday life that belonged to St. Teresa — a bedsheet with the word, "Mother" embroidered on its top; mismatched cutlery; simple plates, a drinking glass and a cup; towels; and a remnant of a bar of soap.
Sister Marine, MC, kept vigil in the chapel, speaking quietly with a visitor.
Many visitors were leaving prayer petitions, said Sister Philomena, MC, who is the superior of the community that serves St. Mark Parish and its Richmond neighbors.
Some visitors sat for a while, some cried.
Sister Philomena prayed for mercy for them.
In the Hall of Honor below the cathedral an exhibit of photographs and writings told the story of St. Teresa, from her birth in Kosovo; to joining the Sisters of Loreto in Ireland, who would send her to India as a teacher; to her discovery of her "vocation within a vocation" to serve the poor.
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