Mother Teresa Helped Cardinal Comastri Remain a Priest

“The Archpriest of St. Peter’s Basilica remembered at Mass on Thursday how a promise he made to Mother Teresa 40 years ago preserved his vocation. She taught him that without prayer, charity cannot exist.

Cardinal Comastri presided over the Eucharistic celebration at Rome’s San Lorenzo in Damaso Church, which had a very welcoming feel with the presence of more than 100 Missionaries of Charity sisters, over 20 concelebrating priests, local government leaders and a very diverse collection of faithful.

Church-goers were pleasantly surprised by the presence of newly-arrived prefect of the Congregation for Bishops, Cardinal Marc Ouellet, who also concelebrated and read a message from the Pope at the beginning of Mass.

In a homily which emphasized that love is the foundation of our existence, Cardinal Comastri remembered a personal encounter he had with the Missionaries of Charity’s founder when he was just a young priest.

His first contact with Mother Teresa came when he mailed her a letter just after he was ordained a priest. Her “unexpected” response was especially striking, he recalled, because it was written on “very poor paper, in a very poor envelope.”

At a later date, Cardinal Comastri sought her out when she was visiting Rome to thank her for the answer. When he found her, she asked him a question that left him “a little embarrassed.”

“How many hours do you pray a day?” she asked.

In 1969-70, he recalled, the Church was in a time of “dispute,” so thinking that it was “near heroism, then-Father Comastri explained to her that he said daily Mass in addition to praying the Liturgy of the Hours and the Rosary.”

To this, she responded flatly, “That’s not enough.”

“Love cannot be lived minimally,” she said, and then asked him to promise to do half an hour of adoration every day.

“I promised,” said Cardinal Comastri, “and today I can say that this saved my priesthood.”” – “Cardinal Comastri Recounts How Mother Teresa Saved His Priesthood”, Catholic News Agency

This story from Catholic News Agency was awesome to read about. I always knew about bigger things that Mother Teresa did for the Church and for other people, but this was a truly touching story to hear about as it is quite personal to Cardinal Comastri. It is great that Cardinal Comastri is sharing this story with everybody now. Mother Teresa was a truly exceptional person and would should all take a minute to say a quick prayer to her today because yesterday would have been her 100th birthday.