St. Teresa of Calcutta was canonized Sunday, Sept. 4, 2016, only nineteen years after her death on Sept. 5, 1997. She has left her mark on the world in big ways because she was a disciple of Christ by doing little deeds that took big prayers, courage, perseverance, faith, trust, hope, and love. Someone like St. Teresa of Calcutta, who saw and served the face of Christ in all those she met, certainly gives our Church and world a lot to celebrate as we strive every day to keep her ministry and memory alive. Here are eight simple ways to celebrate her feast day.
1. Pray the “Flying Novena”
Why not pray the same words St. Teresa relied on again and again? She knew that sometimes prayers are needed immediately, and time doesn’t always allow for several days of petitions. So, she prayed her “Flying Novena,”asking for Mary’s help for speedy assistance. The beauty of this prayer is that it is the well-known Memorare, and it is prayed nine times in a row. (St. Teresa actually prayed it one extra time as a way to give thanks for the petition she confidently knew would be answered). So during your hectic days and for a time-sensitive petition, use this Flying Novena, also known as the “Quick Novena.”
“Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary, that never was it known that anyone who fled to your protection, implored your help, or sought your intercession was left unaided. Inspired with this confidence, I fly unto you, O Virgin of virgins, my Mother. To you I come, before you I stand, sinful and sorrowful. O Mother of the Word Incarnate, despise not my petitions, but in your clemency hear and answer me. Amen.”
2. Refresh your family’s memory on Canonization
How the Church Declares Official Saints is a short, informative video that quickly covers a lot of interesting facts.
3. Listen to a CD on St. Teresa
Holy Heroes sells a great St. Teresa CD. These quality CDs are wonderful to listen to and keep everyone’s attention — from toddlers to teens to adults. The CDs make a drive around town or a long road trip more faith filled, entertaining and educational!
4. Watch a short biography video about St. Teresa
This three-minute narrated video interviews a few people about St. Teresa’s life and work and gives a brief bio.
5. Read a book
Read books about St. Teresa with your family. Two titles in my collection that our family enjoys are Stories Told By Mother Teresa and Mother Teresa: A Life in Pictures. On my wish list are two newer titles: Mother Teresa: The Smile of Calcutta and Mother Teresa of Calcutta.
6. Play with a St. Teresa of Calcutta doll
The St. Teresa of Calcutta Shining Light Doll is an adorable collectible vinyl figure and perfect for little hands and big hearts to play with! My 4-year-old daughter loves playing with our Shining Light Doll collection of various saint and Marian figures.
7. Throw a party and eat cupcakes
Another fun way to celebrate and honor this humble saint is to have a party with a friends and family complete with cupcakes topped with St. Teresa cupcake toppers, blue balloons, blue and white candles, tissue paper flowers, coloring pages and lapbooks.I threw such a party for her canonization with my children as a fun way to celebrate the historical day. Now every year, we can have a party for St. Teresa of Calcutta!
How will you celebrate St. Teresa’s feast day Sept. 5?