Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Something Beautiful for God

Something Beautiful for God: Mother Teresa of Calcutta by Malcolm Muggeridge, 110 pages

When television personality Malcolm Muggeridge took a documentary film crew into the slums of Calcutta to film the work of a little Albanian nun as she cared for the poorest of the poor, she reluctantly accepted the imposition with the words, "Let's do something beautiful for God."  Mother Teresa had left behind the Sisters of Loreto, with whom she had taught girls from India's growing upper class, years earlier, to toil in obscurity.  She was joined by a few disciples, most of them former students.  The sisters took in orphans, lepers, and those rejected by the local hospitals as beyond hope.  Their aim was not only to provide what material help they could, but, more importantly, to incarnate the love of God for those forgotten by society.

This book, a companion and extension of the documentary, chronicles Muggeridge's time with Bl Teresa of Calcutta.  It is very much Muggeridge's story, a merely Christian portrait of a saintly nun aimed at people who, like Muggeridge himself at the time, are attracted by her but less sympathetic towards her Church.  The author never bowdlerizes Bl Teresa's Catholicism - to the contrary, her eucharistic devotion and attitude towards suffering are presented as central to her life and work.

A vital portrait of a saint, an explanation of what her example meant for Christians in the late twentieth century, and what it means for Christianity today.

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