Aidan Byrnes, a junior philosophy major, opened Catholic University’s Mother Teresa Day of Service Sunday, Sept. 18, with the words of the saint: "You can find Calcutta all over the world, if you have eyes to see."
Those words were echoed by Rev. Jude DeAngelo, O.F.M. Conv., University chaplain and director of Campus Ministry, and President John Garvey in their opening remarks. President Garvey reminded students that Saint Teresa was, “somebody like us, and we can all be saints.”
Greg Zingler, who has spent much of his life working with Saint Teresa’s order, the Missionaries of Charity, offered the students his wish "that this day of service brings you to exhaustion, but in exhaustion peace."
Students, faculty, and staff volunteered at numerous sites around the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area. Adrianna Galiana, a sophomore double major in marketing and Spanish from Stratford, Conn., spent her day of service at the Little Sisters of the Poor Jeanne Jugan Residence for senior citizens on Harewood Road across the street from campus.
"I think it's awesome that CUA gives us the opportunity to serve, especially at places like this. Because these are people who may not see visitors as often," said Galiana.
Referring to Mother Teresa’s canonization, Galiana said she felt "joy."
"It's awesome to know that she did so much recently and that we get the opportunity to learn even more about her," noted Galiana.
Students also served on campus by planting trees on the lawn of O'Boyle Hall in keeping with Pope Francis's message of environmental stewardship as expressed in his encyclical Laudato Si. Dante Nicotera, a freshman biology major from Hanover, Mass., joined President Garvey and others in the tree planting.
"One of the reasons I came to Catholic was the commitment to community service and giving back to the community. It's a great way ... to embody what Saint Teresa's message was," said Nickotera.
See the Mother Teresa Day of Service through the eyes of students via Storify.