Mother Teresa: A Life of Dedication


  • By Raghu Rai  (Author)
  • Hardcover: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Harry N. Abrams (1 April 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0810958759
  • ISBN-13: 9780810958753
  • Product Dimensions: 30.5 x 1.9 x 30.8 cm

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In 1928, when she was only eighteen, Gonxha Agnes Bojaxhiu joined the Sisters of Loreto, an Irish community of nuns with missions in India. From 1931 to 1948, Mother Teresa taught in Calcutta, but the suffering and poverty she glimpsed outside the convent made such a deep impression on her that in 1948 she received permission from her superiors to leave the convent school and devote herself to working in the slums of Calcutta. In October 1950, she started her own order, The Missionaries of Charity, whose primary task was to love and care for those persons nobody else was prepared to look after. Less than two years after her death, Pope John Paul II permitted the opening of her Cause of Canonization. On December 20, 2002, a decree approved Mother Teresa’s heroic virtues and the miracle attributed to her intercession. Known for his numerous reportages on India, Raghu Rai met Mother Teresa in the early 1970s. Fascinated by someone who, from the age of twelve, was fully aware of her “mission,” he continued to photograph her until her death in 1997. The relationship of trust that Raghu Rai and Mother Teresa gradually built up is very apparent in the photographer’s work. He threaded his way with her through the streets of Calcutta, where the ever-present poverty and distress illustrated the need for Mother Teresa’s work. His photographs are punctuated by anecdotal texts that recall their encounters and imbued with the spirit that inspired him.


“By blood, I am Albanian. By Citizenship, an Indian. By faith, I am a Catholic nun. As to my calling, I belong to the world. As to my heart, I belong entirely to the Heart of Jesus.”

About the Author

Raghu Rai began his career at The Statesman, a New Delhi daily, in 1966. In 1977 he joined the world’s most prestigious photographers’ cooperative, Magnum. From 1982 to 1992, Rai was the Director of Photography for the magazine India Today before being a member of the jury for World Press Photo from 1990 to 1997. In the last twelve years, Rai has specialized in extensive coverage of his native country, India, and has produced more than ten books, including A Life in the Day of Indira Gandhi (1974), The Sikhs (1984), Delhi: A Portrait (1983), Raghu Rai’s Delhi (1994), Calcutta (1989), and Khajuraho (1991). In 1993 he was also awarded the Photographer of the Year award in the United States. He lives and works in Delhi.