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Saturday, April 29, 2017
Date Posted:
10/10/2005

Mother Teresa


Lifting the dark veil


Contemporary reports of abuse by nuns
Dr Clive Gillis

John Paul II said of Mother Theresa, "In the smile, in the gestures and in the words of Mother Theresa, Jesus has walked once more upon the streets of the world as a good Samaritan".

On August 1st this year, Channel 5 ran an exclusive on the homes run by Mother Theresa's Missionaries of Charity in Calcutta. The header read, "If the Government of India found such conditions in any other Orphanage they would shut it down immediately". Accompanying this was shocking, secretly shot video footage obtained by rugged under cover reporter Donal MacIntyre who was posing as a care worker following tip-offs from concerned aid workers.

The home

The home run by Daya Dan Missionaries of Charity in Nimtolla Ghat Street, still bears a sign which reads "Mother Theresa". It cares for more than 50 under twelve's. The inmates are a mix of children with learning difficulties and physical disabilities. They are cared for by the nuns aided by foreign volunteers and some local workers.

MacIntyre's contention of "primitive conditions" and "substandard care" are backed by sickening footage of children tethered to their cots with ropes, children choking whilst being fed with their hands tied with ropes and a row of children abandoned together for 20 minutes on the toilet.

We saw the chief nun stirring medicine with her un-gloved finger. MacIntyre said that one child wriggled out of his ropes at feeding time, yet, with no training whatever, he was able to feed the child in a dignified way.

Martin Gallagher, MENCAP's former Director of Operations, commented, "These homes fall below the standards of all other care homes. They are warehousing these people rather than providing care for them".

£1 billion

The headquarters of the Missionaries of Charity was dominated by a huge crucifix.

The nuns did not appear in person but issued a statement, "Our homes continue to be simple, providing immediate and effective service to the poorest of the poor … We value constructive criticism and admit that there is always room for improvement. Thank you for bringing to our notice what you consider lapses in the quality of care and hygiene in this home."

That is all very well, but what has happened to the estimated millions of pounds donated to the Theresa nuns since her death? And indeed the billion pounds that, according to one estimate, she attracted after establishing the Missionaries of Charity in 1952?

Government 'terrified'

Another contributor to the programme was Dr Aroup Chatterjee, an atheist born in Calcutta and resident there most of his life. Dr Chatterjee published the results of 14 years painstaking research in his well illustrated book The Final Verdict in 2003.

This was the source of the statement above that, "If the Government of India found such conditions in any other Orphanage they would shut it down immediately".

He said, "the Indian Government is absolutely terrified of Mother Theresa … she is unquestioned". Moreover Roman Catholic forces are at work behind the scenes to suppress the facts.

Nirmala Carvalho of Asia News says that, "Even though the attention of the international media is focused on the allegedly insensitive handling of children, the city administration is treading carefully in Kolkata (Calcutta) because Mother Theresa has a semi-God status among people of all faiths and government officials are unwilling to commit any faux pas in the investigation".

Powerful, rich backers

Dr Chatterjee was incensed when Mother Theresa's Beatification was first mooted. He knew she had "powerful rich and assiduous backers". He wrote to various people stating that she "had been a publicity hungry and often hypocritical person" and "not always honest in her pronouncements and intentions". The evidence is clearly set out in his book.

Jesuit and Saint Maker Fr Peter Gumpel, despite expression of "respect" for Dr Chatterjee's opinions, nevertheless insisted that only Henry D'Souza, RC Archbishop of Calcutta, could collect evidence. So Dr Chatterjee duly produced a lengthy, detailed summary of all he had discovered. Moderate in tone it stands as a shattering indictment of Mother Theresa's abuse of the sick and vulnerable, her hypocrisy and her financial dishonesty. The acknowledgement he received seemed to be a standard reply for praising contributors! He then wrote to a Canadian, Missionaries of Charity priest who acted as "postulator" in the cause for canonization of Mother Theresa, and had set up an office in Calcutta. Then Dr Chatterjee wrote once more to the chief Saint maker at the Vatican. He heard nothing until the public announcement of her forthcoming Beatification.

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