Mother Teresa A complete authorized biography

Kathryn Spink

Book - 1997

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BIOGRAPHY/Teresa, Mother
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San Francisco : HarperSanFrancisco 1997.
Main Author
Kathryn Spink (-)
1st ed
Physical Description
306 p. : ill
Includes index.
Contents unavailable.
Review by Booklist Review

Innumerable books have been written about Mother Teresa; she makes good, profitable copy. Unfortunately for publishers, she passed away so close to the fatal accident involving Princess Diana that they were suddenly in a no-win situation and had to make a choice between the two headline grabbers. And it is surprising that prepublication review galleys were distributed, though distributed late, for a book about such a world-famous person. Spink knew Mother Teresa personally, was involved with her Missionaries of Charity "for nearly 18 years," and was given permission to write her biography, which distinguishes this one from the many others. It covers her life from her youth in Albania to her winning the Noble Prize for Peace in 1979 to her work in India. Certainly it does not try to attack the saint as did Anne Sebba [BKL Ag 97] or to interpret her efforts in other than favorable lights; it does try to give a sense of a very austere woman who chose to spend her life getting close to suffering. --Bonnie Smothers

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

In 1991, freelance author and translator Spink gained Mother Teresa's permission and blessing to tell the world the story of her life and work. Spink's biography benefits from her own 18-year involvement with the work of the Missionaries of Charity Order as well as from the intimate relationship she developed over the years with Mother Teresa. In meticulous fashion, Spink weaves a mosaic of Mother Teresa's life, using momentous events such as Teresa's childhood and her experience of a "call within a call" to religious vocation, Teresa's departure from the Loreto Order to establish the Missionaries of Charity, her tireless work among the sick and dying poor of Calcutta and the recognition of Teresa's humanitarian work when she received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979. While Spink provides this biographical outline, she incorporates excerpts from Mother Teresa's own letters, speeches and other writings to illustrate Teresa's conviction that working to care for the poor, sick and dying was a way of tending to the body of Christ and a way of expressing God's unconditional love to the "poorest of the poor." A final chapter in the book provides glimpses of Mother Teresa's affection for Princess Diana, a brief description of Mother Teresa's funeral and a short account of the election of Sister Nirmal as her successor. Spink responds to what critics have called Mother Teresa's questionable relationships with dictators by noting that "she treated dictators like friends just because she believed that every human being contained divine life." Marked by exhaustive detail and workmanlike prose, Spink's biography is a classic hagiography, yet another argument in favor of Teresa's seemingly inevitable future canonization. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved