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Mother Theresa: Where Are Her Millions?
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Webgiant
2003-09-22 18:56:56 EST
===================================================
http://are.berkeley.edu/~atanu/Writing/teresa.html
===================================================
Walter Wuellenweber
Mother Teresa: Where are her millions?
===================================================
[ This is an English translation of an article from
the German magazine STERN which is conservative
and enjoys a high circulation in Europe. It
appeared in September 1998. ]
===================================================

The Angel of the poor died a year ago. Donations
still flow in to her Missionaries of Charity like
to no other cause. But the winner of the Nobel
Peace Prize vowed to live in poverty. What then,
happened to so much money?

If there is a heaven, then she is surely there:
Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu from Skopje in Macedonia,
better known as Mother Teresa. She came to
Calcutta on the 6th of January 1929 as an 18 year
old sister of the Order of Loreto. 68 years later
luminaries from all over the world assembled in
Calcutta in order to honour her with a state
funeral. In these 68 years she had founded the
most successful order in the history of the
Catholic church, received the Nobel Peace Prize
and became the most famous Catholic of our time.

Are doubts permitted, regarding this "monument"?

In Calcutta, one meets many doubters.

For example, Samity, a man of around 30 with no
teeth, who lives in the slums. He is one of the
"poorest of the poor" to whom Mother Teresa was
supposed to have dedicated her life. With a
plastic bag in hand, he stands in a kilometre
long queue in Calcutta's Park Street. The poor
wait patiently, until the helpers shovel some
rice and lentils into their bags. But Samity
does not get his grub from Mother Teresa's
institution, but instead from the Assembly of
God, an American charity, that serves 18000
meals here daily.

"Mother Teresa?"says Samity, "We have not
received anything from her here. Ask in the
slums -- who has received anything from the
sisters here -- you will find hardly anybody."

Pannalal Manik also has doubts. "I don't
understand why you educated people in the West
have made this woman into such a goddess!"
Manik was born some 56 years ago in the
Rambagan slum, which at about 300 years of age,
is Calcutta's oldest. What Manik has achieved,
can well be called a "miracle". He has built
16 apartment buildings in the midst of the
slum -- living space for 4000 people. Money
for the building materials -- equivalent to
DM 10000 per apartment building -- was begged
for by Manik from the Ramakrishna Mission
[a Indian/Hindu charity], the largest
assistance-organization in India. The
slum-dwellers built the buildings themselves.
It has become a model for the whole of India.
But what about Mother Teresa? "I went to her
place 3 times," said Manik. "She did not even
listen to what I had to say. Everyone on earth
knows that the sisters have a lot of money. But
no one knows what they do with it!"

In Calcutta there are about 200 charitable
organizations helping the poor. Mother
Teresa's Missionaries of Charity are not
amongst the biggest helpers: that contradicts
the image of the organization. The name
"Mother Teresa" was and is tied to the city of
Calcutta. All over the world admirers and
supporters of the Nobel Prize winner believe
that it must be there that her organization is
particularly active in the fight against poverty.
"All lies," says Aroup Chatterjee . The doctor
who lives in London was born and brought up in
Calcutta. Chatterjee who has been working for
years on a book on the myth of Mother Teresa,
speaks to the poor in the slums of Calcutta, or
combs through the speeches of the Nobel Prize
winner. "No matter where I search, I only find
lies. For example the lies about schools. Mother
Theresa has often stated that she runs a school
in Calcutta for more than 5000 children. 5000
children! -- that would have to be a huge school,
one of the biggest in all of India. But where is
this school? I have never found it, nor do I know
anybody who has seen it!" says Chatterjee.

Compared to other charitable organizations in
Calcutta, the nuns with the 3 blue stripes are
ahead in two respects: they are world famous, and,
they have the most money. But how much exactly,
has always been a closely guarded secret of the
organization. Indian law requires charitable
organizations to publish their accounts. Mother
Teresa's organization ignores this prescription!
It is not known if the Finance Ministry in Delhi
who would be responsible for charities' accounts,
have the actual figures. Upon STERN's inquiry,
the Ministry informed us that this particular
query was listed as "classified information".

The organization has 6 branches in Germany. Here
too financial matters are a strict secret. "It's
nobody's business how much money we have, I mean
to say how little we have," says Sr Pauline, head
of the German operations. Maria Tingelhoff had
had handled the organization's book-keeping on a
voluntary basis until 1981. "We did see 3 million
[DM, 1998; $1,500,000] a year," she remembers.
But Mother Teresa never quite trusted the worldly
helpers completely. So the sisters took over the
financial management themselves in 1981. "Of
course I don't know how much money went in, in the
years after that, but it must be many multiples of
3 million," estimates Mrs Tingelhoff. "Mother was
always very pleased with the Germans."

Perhaps the most lucrative branch of the
organization is the "Holy Ghost" House in New
York's Bronx. Susan Shields served the order
there for a total of nine and a half years as
Sister Virgin. "We spent a large part of each
day writing thank you letters and processing
cheques," she says. "Every night around 25
sisters had to spend many hours preparing
receipts for donations. It was a conveyor belt
process: some sisters typed, others made lists
of the amounts, stuffed letters into envelopes,
or sorted the cheques. Values were between $5
and $100.000. Donors often dropped their
envelopes filled with money at the door. Before
Christmas the flow of donations was often totally
out of control. The postman brought sackfuls of
letters -- cheques for $50000 were no rarity."
Sister Virgin remembers that one year there was
about $50 million in a New York bank account.
$50 million in one year! -- in a predominantly
non-Catholic country. How much then, were they
collecting in Europe or the world? It is estimated
that worldwide they collected at least $100 million
per year -- and that has been going on for many many
years.

While the income is utter secret, the expenditures
are equally mysterious. The order is hardly able
to spend large amounts. The establishments
supported by the nuns are so tiny (inconspicuous)
that even the locals have difficulty tracing them.
Often "Mother Teresa's Home" means just a living
accommodation for the sisters, with no charitable
function. Conspicuous or useful assistance cannot
be provided there. The order often receives huge
donations in kind, in addition to the monetary
munificence. Boxes of medicines land at Indian
airports. Donated food grains and powdered milk
arrive in containers at Calcutta port. Clothing
donations from Europe and the US arrive in
unimaginable quantities. On Calcutta's pavement
stalls, traders can be seen selling used western
labels for 25 rupees (DM1) [$0.50] apiece.
Numerous traders call out, "Shirts from Mother,
trousers from Mother."

Unlike with other charities, the Missionaries of
Charity spend very little on their own management,
since the organization is run at practically no
cost. The approximately 4000 sisters in 150
countries form the most treasured workforce of all
global multi-million dollar operations. Having
taken vows of poverty and obedience, they work for
no pay, supported by 300,000 good citizen helpers.

By their own admission, Mother Teresa's organization
has about 500 locations worldwide. But for purchase
or rent of property, the sisters do not need to touch
their bank accounts. "Mother always said, we don't
spend for that," remembers Sunita Kumar, one the
richest women in Calcutta and supposedly Mother
Theresa's closest associate outside the order.
"If Mother needed a house, she went straight to the
owner, whether it was the State or a private person,
and worked on him for so long that she eventually
got it free."

Her method was also successful in Germany. In March
the "Bethlehem House" was dedicated in Hamburg, a
shelter for homeless women. Four sisters work there.
The architecturally conspicuous building cost DM2.5
million. The fortunes of the order have not spent a
penny toward the amount. The money was collected by
a Christian association in Hamburg. With Mother
Theresa as figure head it was naturally short work
to collect the millions.

Mother Teresa saw it as as her God given right never
to have to pay anyone for anything. Once she bought
food for her nuns in London for GB£500 [$1,100].
When she was told she'd have to pay at the till, the
diminutive seemingly harmless nun showed her Balkan
temper and shouted, "This is for the work of God!"
She raged so loud and so long that eventually a
businessman waiting in the queue paid up on her
behalf.

England is one of the few countries where the sisters
allow the authorities at least a quick glance at their
accounts. Here the order took in DM5.3 million
[$2,600,000] in 1991. And expenses (including
charitable expenses)? -- around DM360,000 [$180,000]
or less than 7%. Whatever happened to the rest of
the money? Sister Teresina, the head for England,
defensively states, "Sorry we can't tell you that."
Every year, according to the returns filed with the
British authorities, a portion of the fortune is sent to
accounts of the order in other countries. How much to
which countries is not declared. One of the recipients
is however, always Rome. The fortune of this famous
charitable organization is controlled from Rome, -- from
an account at the Vatican bank. And what happens with
monies at the Vatican Bank is so secret that even God
is not allowed to know about it. One thing is sure
however - - Mother's outlets in poor countries do not
benefit from largesses of the rich countries. The
official biographer of Mother Teresa, Kathryn Spink,
writes, "As soon as the sisters became established in a
certain country, Mother normally withdrew all financial
support." Branches in very needy countries therefore
only receive start-up assistance. Most of the money
remains in the Vatican Bank.

STERN asked the Missionaries of Charity numerous times
for information about location of the donations, both
in writing as well in person during a visit to Mother
Teresa's house in Calcutta. The order has never
answered.

"You should visit the House in New York, then you'll
understand what happens to donations," says Eva
Kolodziej. The Polish lady was a Missionary of
Charity for 5 years. "In the cellar of the homeless
shelter there are valuable books, jewellery and gold.
What happens to them? -- The sisters receive them with
smiles, and keep them. Most of these lie around
uselessly forever."

The millions that are donated to the order have a
similar fate. Susan Shields (formerly Sr Virgin)
says, "The money was not misused, but the largest
part of it wasn't used at all. When there was a
famine in Ethiopia, many cheques arrived marked
'for the hungry in Ethiopia'. Once I asked the
sister who was in charge of accounts if I should
add up all those very many cheques and send the
total to Ethiopia. The sister answered, 'No, we
don't send money to Africa.' But I continued to
make receipts to the donors, 'For Ethiopia'."

By the accounts of former sisters, the finances are
a one way street. "We were always told, the fact
that we receive more than other orders, shows that
God loves Mother Teresa more. ," says Susan Shields.
Donations and hefty bank balances are a measure of
God's love. Taking is holier than giving.

The sufferers are the ones for whom the donations
were originally intended. The nuns run a soup
kitchen in New York's Bronx. Or, to put in straight,
they have it run for them, since volunteer helpers
organize everything, including food. The sisters
might distribute it. Once, Shields remembers, the
helpers made an organizational mistake, so they
could not deliver bread with their meals. The
sisters asked their superior if they could buy the
bread. "Out of the question -- we are a poor
organization." came the reply. "In the end, the
poor did not get their bread," says Shields.
Shields has experienced countless such incidents.
One girl from communion class did not appear for her
first communion because her mother could not buy her
a white communion dress. So she had to wait another
year; but as that particular Sunday approached, she
had the same problem again. Shields (Sr Virgin)
asked the superior if the order could buy the girl a
white dress. Again, she was turned down -- gruffly.
The girl never had her first communion.

Because of the tightfistedness of the rich order,
the "poorest of the poor" -- orphans in India -- suffer
the most. The nuns run a home in Delhi, in which the
orphans wait to be adopted by, in many cases, by
foreigners. As usual, the costs of running the home
are borne not by the order, but by the future adoptive
parents. In Germany the organization called Pro
Infante has the monopoly of mediation role for these
children. The head, Carla Wiedeking, a personal friend
of Mother Teresa's, wrote a letter to Donors, Supporters
and Friends which ran:

"On my September visit I had to witness 2 or 3
children lying in the same cot, in totally
overcrowded rooms with not a square inch of
playing space. The behavioural problems
arising as a result cannot be overlooked."

Mrs Wiedeking appeals to the generosity of
supporters in view of her powerlessness in the
face of the children's great needs. Powerlessness?!
In an organization with a billion- fortune, which
has 3 times as much money available to it as UNICEF
is able to spend in all of India? The Missionaries
of Charity has have the means to buy cots and build
orphanages, -- with playgrounds. And they have enough
money not only for a handful orphans in Delhi but for
many thousand orphans who struggle for survival in
the streets of Delhi, Bombay and Calcutta.

Saving, in Mother Teresa's philosophy, was a central
value in itself. All very well, but as her poor
organization quickly grew into a rich one, what did
she do with her pictures, jewels, inherited houses,
cheques or suitcases full of money? If she wished
to she could now cater to people not by obsessively
indulging in saving, but instead through well
thought-out spending. But the Nobel Prize winner
did not want an efficient organization that helped
people efficiently. Full of pride, she called the
Missionaries of Charity the "most disorganized
organization in the world". Computers, typewriters,
photocopiers are not allowed. Even when they are
donated, they are not allowed to be installed. For
book-keeping the sisters use school notebooks, in
which they write in cramped penciled figures. Until
they are full. Then everything is erased and the
notebook used again. All in order to save.

For a sustainable charitable system, it would have
been sensible to train the nuns to become nurses,
teachers or managers. But a Missionary of Charity
nun is never trained for anything further.

Fueled by her desire for un-professionalism, Mother
Teresa decisions from year to year became even more
bizarre. Once, says Susan Shields, the order bought
an empty building from the City of New York in order
to look after AIDS patients. Purchase price:
$1 dollar. But since handicapped people would also
be using the house, NY City management insisted on
the installation of a lift (elevator). The offer of
the lift was declined: to Mother they were a sign of
wealth. Finally the nuns gave the building back to
the City of New York.

While the Missionaries of Charity have already
withheld help from the starving in Ethiopia or the
orphans in India -- despite having received donations
in their names -- there are others who are being
actively harmed by the organization's ideology of
disorganization. In 1994, Robin Fox, editor of the
prestigious medical journal Lancet, in a commentary
on the catastrophic conditions prevailing in Mother
Teresa's homes, shocked the professional world by
saying that any systematic operation was foreign to
the running of the homes in India: TB patients were
not isolated, and syringes were washed in lukewarm
water before being used again. Even patients in
unbearable pain were refused strong painkillers, not
because the order did not have them, but on principle.
"The most beautiful gift for a person is that he can
participate in the suffering of Christ," said Mother
Teresa. Once she had tried to comfort a screaming
sufferer, "You are suffering, that means Jesus is
kissing you." The sufferer screamed back, furious,
"Then tell your Jesus to stop kissing me."

The English doctor Jack Preger once worked in the
home for the dying. He says, "If one wants to give
love, understanding and care, one uses sterile
needles. This is probably the richest order in the
world. Many of the dying there do not have to be
dying in a strictly medical sense." The British
newspaper Guardian described the hospice as an "
organized form of neglectful assistance".

It seems that the medical care of the orphans is
hardly any better. In 1991 the head of Pro Infante
in Germany sent a newsletter to adoptive parents:

"Please check the validity of the vaccinations
of your children. We assume that in some case
they have been vaccinated with expired vaccines,
or with vaccines that had been rendered useless
by improper storage conditions."

All this points to one thing, something that
Mother Teresa reiterated very frequently in her
speeches and addresses -- that she far more
concerned with life after death than the mortal
life.

Mother Teresa's business was : Money for a good
conscience. The donors benefited the most from
this. The poor hardly. Whosoever believed that
Mother Teresa wanted to change the world,
eliminate suffering or fight poverty, simply
wanted to believe it for their own sakes. Such
people did not listen to her. To be poor, to
suffer was a goal, almost an ambition or an
achievement for her and she imposed this goal
upon those under her wings; her actual ordained
goal was the hereafter.

With growing fame, the founder of the order
became somewhat conscious of the misconceptions
on which the Mother Teresa phenomenon was based.
She wrote a few words and hung them outside
Mother House:

"Tell them we are not here for work,
we are here for Jesus.

We are religious above all else.

We are not social workers,
not teachers,
not doctors.

We are nuns."

One question then remains: For what, in that
case, do nuns need so much money?
===================================================


Budokan
2003-09-22 23:13:46 EST
This is a wonderful story, however one would expect that social
robbery on this scale would have to be invertigated by Interpol. The
claims of fraud and wanton dishonesty, diserve routing. Unfortunately
without the followup investigation to prove these allegations, all we
have here is a "Gossip" collumn. In this modern world it wouldn't take
much convincing to get a vocal minority to scream out against an
institution, particularly the Catholic Church, yet nothing. Just a
voice crying in the wilderness. If this article is more than words,
prove it to be so. For the last thing the Catholic Church needs is
another cover up.

However I would pose that the finishing question proposed by the
author in an attempt to perplex us and confound Mother Theresa, is
entirely off target. The question should be, and therefore the anger
directed too, "Why would people still send millions to an order with a
sign on the door that explicitatly instructs them that the order is
there for Jesus and not working for the people?(Para-phrased of
course) for with this undertanding there is no crime in not passing
the money on, since a fool and their money are soon parted. Said
differently, if a person isn't running a charity, don't send them
money. That being said we have only the authors word that the sign or
the supposed research even exists.


webgiant <webgiant@rocketmail.com> wrote in message news:<slrnbmuvgg.25a.webgiant@localhost.localdomain>...
> ===================================================
> http://are.berkeley.edu/~atanu/Writing/teresa.html
> ===================================================
> Walter Wuellenweber
> Mother Teresa: Where are her millions?
> ===================================================
> [ This is an English translation of an article from
> the German magazine STERN which is conservative
> and enjoys a high circulation in Europe. It
> appeared in September 1998. ]
> ===================================================
>
> The Angel of the poor died a year ago. Donations
> still flow in to her Missionaries of Charity like
> to no other cause. But the winner of the Nobel
> Peace Prize vowed to live in poverty. What then,
> happened to so much money?
>
> If there is a heaven, then she is surely there:
> Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu from Skopje in Macedonia,
> better known as Mother Teresa. She came to
> Calcutta on the 6th of January 1929 as an 18 year
> old sister of the Order of Loreto. 68 years later
> luminaries from all over the world assembled in
> Calcutta in order to honour her with a state
> funeral. In these 68 years she had founded the
> most successful order in the history of the
> Catholic church, received the Nobel Peace Prize
> and became the most famous Catholic of our time.
>
> Are doubts permitted, regarding this "monument"?
>
> In Calcutta, one meets many doubters.
>
> For example, Samity, a man of around 30 with no
> teeth, who lives in the slums. He is one of the
> "poorest of the poor" to whom Mother Teresa was
> supposed to have dedicated her life. With a
> plastic bag in hand, he stands in a kilometre
> long queue in Calcutta's Park Street. The poor
> wait patiently, until the helpers shovel some
> rice and lentils into their bags. But Samity
> does not get his grub from Mother Teresa's
> institution, but instead from the Assembly of
> God, an American charity, that serves 18000
> meals here daily.
>
> "Mother Teresa?"says Samity, "We have not
> received anything from her here. Ask in the
> slums -- who has received anything from the
> sisters here -- you will find hardly anybody."
>
> Pannalal Manik also has doubts. "I don't
> understand why you educated people in the West
> have made this woman into such a goddess!"
> Manik was born some 56 years ago in the
> Rambagan slum, which at about 300 years of age,
> is Calcutta's oldest. What Manik has achieved,
> can well be called a "miracle". He has built
> 16 apartment buildings in the midst of the
> slum -- living space for 4000 people. Money
> for the building materials -- equivalent to
> DM 10000 per apartment building -- was begged
> for by Manik from the Ramakrishna Mission
> [a Indian/Hindu charity], the largest
> assistance-organization in India. The
> slum-dwellers built the buildings themselves.
> It has become a model for the whole of India.
> But what about Mother Teresa? "I went to her
> place 3 times," said Manik. "She did not even
> listen to what I had to say. Everyone on earth
> knows that the sisters have a lot of money. But
> no one knows what they do with it!"
>
> In Calcutta there are about 200 charitable
> organizations helping the poor. Mother
> Teresa's Missionaries of Charity are not
> amongst the biggest helpers: that contradicts
> the image of the organization. The name
> "Mother Teresa" was and is tied to the city of
> Calcutta. All over the world admirers and
> supporters of the Nobel Prize winner believe
> that it must be there that her organization is
> particularly active in the fight against poverty.
> "All lies," says Aroup Chatterjee . The doctor
> who lives in London was born and brought up in
> Calcutta. Chatterjee who has been working for
> years on a book on the myth of Mother Teresa,
> speaks to the poor in the slums of Calcutta, or
> combs through the speeches of the Nobel Prize
> winner. "No matter where I search, I only find
> lies. For example the lies about schools. Mother
> Theresa has often stated that she runs a school
> in Calcutta for more than 5000 children. 5000
> children! -- that would have to be a huge school,
> one of the biggest in all of India. But where is
> this school? I have never found it, nor do I know
> anybody who has seen it!" says Chatterjee.
>
> Compared to other charitable organizations in
> Calcutta, the nuns with the 3 blue stripes are
> ahead in two respects: they are world famous, and,
> they have the most money. But how much exactly,
> has always been a closely guarded secret of the
> organization. Indian law requires charitable
> organizations to publish their accounts. Mother
> Teresa's organization ignores this prescription!
> It is not known if the Finance Ministry in Delhi
> who would be responsible for charities' accounts,
> have the actual figures. Upon STERN's inquiry,
> the Ministry informed us that this particular
> query was listed as "classified information".
>
> The organization has 6 branches in Germany. Here
> too financial matters are a strict secret. "It's
> nobody's business how much money we have, I mean
> to say how little we have," says Sr Pauline, head
> of the German operations. Maria Tingelhoff had
> had handled the organization's book-keeping on a
> voluntary basis until 1981. "We did see 3 million
> [DM, 1998; $1,500,000] a year," she remembers.
> But Mother Teresa never quite trusted the worldly
> helpers completely. So the sisters took over the
> financial management themselves in 1981. "Of
> course I don't know how much money went in, in the
> years after that, but it must be many multiples of
> 3 million," estimates Mrs Tingelhoff. "Mother was
> always very pleased with the Germans."
>
> Perhaps the most lucrative branch of the
> organization is the "Holy Ghost" House in New
> York's Bronx. Susan Shields served the order
> there for a total of nine and a half years as
> Sister Virgin. "We spent a large part of each
> day writing thank you letters and processing
> cheques," she says. "Every night around 25
> sisters had to spend many hours preparing
> receipts for donations. It was a conveyor belt
> process: some sisters typed, others made lists
> of the amounts, stuffed letters into envelopes,
> or sorted the cheques. Values were between $5
> and $100.000. Donors often dropped their
> envelopes filled with money at the door. Before
> Christmas the flow of donations was often totally
> out of control. The postman brought sackfuls of
> letters -- cheques for $50000 were no rarity."
> Sister Virgin remembers that one year there was
> about $50 million in a New York bank account.
> $50 million in one year! -- in a predominantly
> non-Catholic country. How much then, were they
> collecting in Europe or the world? It is estimated
> that worldwide they collected at least $100 million
> per year -- and that has been going on for many many
> years.
>
> While the income is utter secret, the expenditures
> are equally mysterious. The order is hardly able
> to spend large amounts. The establishments
> supported by the nuns are so tiny (inconspicuous)
> that even the locals have difficulty tracing them.
> Often "Mother Teresa's Home" means just a living
> accommodation for the sisters, with no charitable
> function. Conspicuous or useful assistance cannot
> be provided there. The order often receives huge
> donations in kind, in addition to the monetary
> munificence. Boxes of medicines land at Indian
> airports. Donated food grains and powdered milk
> arrive in containers at Calcutta port. Clothing
> donations from Europe and the US arrive in
> unimaginable quantities. On Calcutta's pavement
> stalls, traders can be seen selling used western
> labels for 25 rupees (DM1) [$0.50] apiece.
> Numerous traders call out, "Shirts from Mother,
> trousers from Mother."
>
> Unlike with other charities, the Missionaries of
> Charity spend very little on their own management,
> since the organization is run at practically no
> cost. The approximately 4000 sisters in 150
> countries form the most treasured workforce of all
> global multi-million dollar operations. Having
> taken vows of poverty and obedience, they work for
> no pay, supported by 300,000 good citizen helpers.
>
> By their own admission, Mother Teresa's organization
> has about 500 locations worldwide. But for purchase
> or rent of property, the sisters do not need to touch
> their bank accounts. "Mother always said, we don't
> spend for that," remembers Sunita Kumar, one the
> richest women in Calcutta and supposedly Mother
> Theresa's closest associate outside the order.
> "If Mother needed a house, she went straight to the
> owner, whether it was the State or a private person,
> and worked on him for so long that she eventually
> got it free."
>
> Her method was also successful in Germany. In March
> the "Bethlehem House" was dedicated in Hamburg, a
> shelter for homeless women. Four sisters work there.
> The architecturally conspicuous building cost DM2.5
> million. The fortunes of the order have not spent a
> penny toward the amount. The money was collected by
> a Christian association in Hamburg. With Mother
> Theresa as figure head it was naturally short work
> to collect the millions.
>
> Mother Teresa saw it as as her God given right never
> to have to pay anyone for anything. Once she bought
> food for her nuns in London for GB£500 [$1,100].
> When she was told she'd have to pay at the till, the
> diminutive seemingly harmless nun showed her Balkan
> temper and shouted, "This is for the work of God!"
> She raged so loud and so long that eventually a
> businessman waiting in the queue paid up on her
> behalf.
>
> England is one of the few countries where the sisters
> allow the authorities at least a quick glance at their
> accounts. Here the order took in DM5.3 million
> [$2,600,000] in 1991. And expenses (including
> charitable expenses)? -- around DM360,000 [$180,000]
> or less than 7%. Whatever happened to the rest of
> the money? Sister Teresina, the head for England,
> defensively states, "Sorry we can't tell you that."
> Every year, according to the returns filed with the
> British authorities, a portion of the fortune is sent to
> accounts of the order in other countries. How much to
> which countries is not declared. One of the recipients
> is however, always Rome. The fortune of this famous
> charitable organization is controlled from Rome, -- from
> an account at the Vatican bank. And what happens with
> monies at the Vatican Bank is so secret that even God
> is not allowed to know about it. One thing is sure
> however - - Mother's outlets in poor countries do not
> benefit from largesses of the rich countries. The
> official biographer of Mother Teresa, Kathryn Spink,
> writes, "As soon as the sisters became established in a
> certain country, Mother normally withdrew all financial
> support." Branches in very needy countries therefore
> only receive start-up assistance. Most of the money
> remains in the Vatican Bank.
>
> STERN asked the Missionaries of Charity numerous times
> for information about location of the donations, both
> in writing as well in person during a visit to Mother
> Teresa's house in Calcutta. The order has never
> answered.
>
> "You should visit the House in New York, then you'll
> understand what happens to donations," says Eva
> Kolodziej. The Polish lady was a Missionary of
> Charity for 5 years. "In the cellar of the homeless
> shelter there are valuable books, jewellery and gold.
> What happens to them? -- The sisters receive them with
> smiles, and keep them. Most of these lie around
> uselessly forever."
>
> The millions that are donated to the order have a
> similar fate. Susan Shields (formerly Sr Virgin)
> says, "The money was not misused, but the largest
> part of it wasn't used at all. When there was a
> famine in Ethiopia, many cheques arrived marked
> 'for the hungry in Ethiopia'. Once I asked the
> sister who was in charge of accounts if I should
> add up all those very many cheques and send the
> total to Ethiopia. The sister answered, 'No, we
> don't send money to Africa.' But I continued to
> make receipts to the donors, 'For Ethiopia'."
>
> By the accounts of former sisters, the finances are
> a one way street. "We were always told, the fact
> that we receive more than other orders, shows that
> God loves Mother Teresa more. ," says Susan Shields.
> Donations and hefty bank balances are a measure of
> God's love. Taking is holier than giving.
>
> The sufferers are the ones for whom the donations
> were originally intended. The nuns run a soup
> kitchen in New York's Bronx. Or, to put in straight,
> they have it run for them, since volunteer helpers
> organize everything, including food. The sisters
> might distribute it. Once, Shields remembers, the
> helpers made an organizational mistake, so they
> could not deliver bread with their meals. The
> sisters asked their superior if they could buy the
> bread. "Out of the question -- we are a poor
> organization." came the reply. "In the end, the
> poor did not get their bread," says Shields.
> Shields has experienced countless such incidents.
> One girl from communion class did not appear for her
> first communion because her mother could not buy her
> a white communion dress. So she had to wait another
> year; but as that particular Sunday approached, she
> had the same problem again. Shields (Sr Virgin)
> asked the superior if the order could buy the girl a
> white dress. Again, she was turned down -- gruffly.
> The girl never had her first communion.
>
> Because of the tightfistedness of the rich order,
> the "poorest of the poor" -- orphans in India -- suffer
> the most. The nuns run a home in Delhi, in which the
> orphans wait to be adopted by, in many cases, by
> foreigners. As usual, the costs of running the home
> are borne not by the order, but by the future adoptive
> parents. In Germany the organization called Pro
> Infante has the monopoly of mediation role for these
> children. The head, Carla Wiedeking, a personal friend
> of Mother Teresa's, wrote a letter to Donors, Supporters
> and Friends which ran:
>
> "On my September visit I had to witness 2 or 3
> children lying in the same cot, in totally
> overcrowded rooms with not a square inch of
> playing space. The behavioural problems
> arising as a result cannot be overlooked."
>
> Mrs Wiedeking appeals to the generosity of
> supporters in view of her powerlessness in the
> face of the children's great needs. Powerlessness?!
> In an organization with a billion- fortune, which
> has 3 times as much money available to it as UNICEF
> is able to spend in all of India? The Missionaries
> of Charity has have the means to buy cots and build
> orphanages, -- with playgrounds. And they have enough
> money not only for a handful orphans in Delhi but for
> many thousand orphans who struggle for survival in
> the streets of Delhi, Bombay and Calcutta.
>
> Saving, in Mother Teresa's philosophy, was a central
> value in itself. All very well, but as her poor
> organization quickly grew into a rich one, what did
> she do with her pictures, jewels, inherited houses,
> cheques or suitcases full of money? If she wished
> to she could now cater to people not by obsessively
> indulging in saving, but instead through well
> thought-out spending. But the Nobel Prize winner
> did not want an efficient organization that helped
> people efficiently. Full of pride, she called the
> Missionaries of Charity the "most disorganized
> organization in the world". Computers, typewriters,
> photocopiers are not allowed. Even when they are
> donated, they are not allowed to be installed. For
> book-keeping the sisters use school notebooks, in
> which they write in cramped penciled figures. Until
> they are full. Then everything is erased and the
> notebook used again. All in order to save.
>
> For a sustainable charitable system, it would have
> been sensible to train the nuns to become nurses,
> teachers or managers. But a Missionary of Charity
> nun is never trained for anything further.
>
> Fueled by her desire for un-professionalism, Mother
> Teresa decisions from year to year became even more
> bizarre. Once, says Susan Shields, the order bought
> an empty building from the City of New York in order
> to look after AIDS patients. Purchase price:
> $1 dollar. But since handicapped people would also
> be using the house, NY City management insisted on
> the installation of a lift (elevator). The offer of
> the lift was declined: to Mother they were a sign of
> wealth. Finally the nuns gave the building back to
> the City of New York.
>
> While the Missionaries of Charity have already
> withheld help from the starving in Ethiopia or the
> orphans in India -- despite having received donations
> in their names -- there are others who are being
> actively harmed by the organization's ideology of
> disorganization. In 1994, Robin Fox, editor of the
> prestigious medical journal Lancet, in a commentary
> on the catastrophic conditions prevailing in Mother
> Teresa's homes, shocked the professional world by
> saying that any systematic operation was foreign to
> the running of the homes in India: TB patients were
> not isolated, and syringes were washed in lukewarm
> water before being used again. Even patients in
> unbearable pain were refused strong painkillers, not
> because the order did not have them, but on principle.
> "The most beautiful gift for a person is that he can
> participate in the suffering of Christ," said Mother
> Teresa. Once she had tried to comfort a screaming
> sufferer, "You are suffering, that means Jesus is
> kissing you." The sufferer screamed back, furious,
> "Then tell your Jesus to stop kissing me."
>
> The English doctor Jack Preger once worked in the
> home for the dying. He says, "If one wants to give
> love, understanding and care, one uses sterile
> needles. This is probably the richest order in the
> world. Many of the dying there do not have to be
> dying in a strictly medical sense." The British
> newspaper Guardian described the hospice as an "
> organized form of neglectful assistance".
>
> It seems that the medical care of the orphans is
> hardly any better. In 1991 the head of Pro Infante
> in Germany sent a newsletter to adoptive parents:
>
> "Please check the validity of the vaccinations
> of your children. We assume that in some case
> they have been vaccinated with expired vaccines,
> or with vaccines that had been rendered useless
> by improper storage conditions."
>
> All this points to one thing, something that
> Mother Teresa reiterated very frequently in her
> speeches and addresses -- that she far more
> concerned with life after death than the mortal
> life.
>
> Mother Teresa's business was : Money for a good
> conscience. The donors benefited the most from
> this. The poor hardly. Whosoever believed that
> Mother Teresa wanted to change the world,
> eliminate suffering or fight poverty, simply
> wanted to believe it for their own sakes. Such
> people did not listen to her. To be poor, to
> suffer was a goal, almost an ambition or an
> achievement for her and she imposed this goal
> upon those under her wings; her actual ordained
> goal was the hereafter.
>
> With growing fame, the founder of the order
> became somewhat conscious of the misconceptions
> on which the Mother Teresa phenomenon was based.
> She wrote a few words and hung them outside
> Mother House:
>
> "Tell them we are not here for work,
> we are here for Jesus.
>
> We are religious above all else.
>
> We are not social workers,
> not teachers,
> not doctors.
>
> We are nuns."
>
> One question then remains: For what, in that
> case, do nuns need so much money?
> ===================================================

Chain Breaker
2003-09-22 23:54:22 EST
> One question then remains: For what, in that
> case, do nuns need so much money?
> ===================================================
I don't know but I know she believed this:

"If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives.
Be kind anyway."

Ray Fischer
2003-09-23 00:27:55 EST
Budokan <tartantiger2001@yahoo.com.au> wrote:
>This is a wonderful story, however one would expect that social
>robbery on this scale would have to be invertigated by Interpol. The
>claims of fraud and wanton dishonesty, diserve routing.

Except when it's the Catholic Church that's involved.

After all, it took decades of child abuse by hundreds of priests with
thousands of victims before the outrage built up enough to call them
to account.

--
Ray Fischer
r*r@sonic.net


Take Clayton Only As Directed
2003-09-23 03:50:23 EST

"Chain Breaker" <nothingnobler@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:51251a1c.0309221954.45a351a1@posting.google.com...
> > One question then remains: For what, in that
> > case, do nuns need so much money?
> > ===================================================
> I don't know but I know she believed this:
>
> "If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives.
> Be kind anyway."

And of course you have to be cruel to be kind. Like the way she liked to
encourage the people to stay poor, because she has some deranged mind fart
that being poor was noble... and the way she encouraged them to keep having
more children to make them even poorer and more desperate... and the way her
nuns would sometimes cruelly assault and torture the people they were
supposed to be supporting. Just like all religions, her first priority
wasn't helping people per se, but to expand the numbers of faithful and
promote her religion and her own personal fame and glory... which the church
has long known you achieve by showing compassion to those willing to convert
and throwing a few crumbs to the starving, all the while lining the coffers
of the trillionaire Vatican with the majority of the money. The truth of
the hollow facade is there for everyone to see...but as usual, the faithful
close their eyes, cover their ears and scream, "LA LA LA LA...CAN'T HEAR
YOU... GOD JESUS BIBLE...LA LA LA!!!"





Bob Dog
2003-09-23 11:21:10 EST
webgiant <webgiant@rocketmail.com> wrote in message news:<slrnbmuvgg.25a.webgiant@localhost.localdomain>...
> ===================================================
> http://are.berkeley.edu/~atanu/Writing/teresa.html
> ===================================================
> Walter Wuellenweber
> Mother Teresa: Where are her millions?
> ===================================================

She was the catholic cult's "cash cow", in more than one
sense of the phrase.

When $cientology and other cults pull stunts like this,
they are labelled money-grubbing cults, so why isn't the
catholic cult held to the same standard by the public, the
government and the media?


Bob Dog

Webgiant
2003-09-23 22:46:16 EST
On 22 Sep 2003 20:54:22 -0700,
Chain Breaker <nothingnobler@hotmail.com> wrote:

> webgiant wrote:

===================================================
http://are.berkeley.edu/~atanu/Writing/teresa.html
===================================================
Walter Wuellenweber
Mother Teresa: Where are her millions?
===================================================
[ This is an English translation of an article from
the German magazine STERN which is conservative
and enjoys a high circulation in Europe. It
appeared in September 1998. ]
===================================================

>> One question then remains: For what, in that
>> case, do nuns need so much money?
>> =============================================
> I don't know but I know she believed this:
>
> "If you are kind, people may accuse you
> of selfish, ulterior motives.
> Be kind anyway."

Pity Mother Theresa *didn't take her own advice*.

She was a good Catholic.

She was certainly not *kind*.

>From the article you *conveniently snipped*:

~ While the Missionaries of Charity have
~ already withheld help from the starving
- in Ethiopia or the orphans in India --
~ despite having received donations in
~ their names -- there are others who are
~ being actively harmed by the organization's
~ ideology of disorganization. In 1994, Robin
~ Fox, editor of the prestigious medical journal
~ Lancet, in a commentary on the catastrophic
~ conditions prevailing in Mother Teresa's homes,
~ shocked the professional world by saying that
~ any systematic operation was foreign to the
~ running of the homes in India: TB patients
~ were not isolated, and syringes were washed in
~ lukewarm water before being used again. Even
~ patients in unbearable pain were refused strong
~ painkillers, not because the order did not have
~ them, but on principle.

~ "The most beautiful gift for a person is that
~ he can participate in the suffering of Christ,"
~ said Mother Teresa.

~ Once she had tried to comfort a screaming
~ sufferer, "You are suffering, that means
~ Jesus is kissing you." The sufferer
~ screamed back, furious, "Then tell your
~ Jesus to stop kissing me."
~
~ The English doctor Jack Preger once worked
~ in the home for the dying. He says,

~ "If one wants to give love, understanding
~ and care, one uses sterile needles. This
~ is probably the richest order in the world.
~ Many of the dying there do not have to be
~ dying in a strictly medical sense." The
~ British newspaper Guardian described the
~ hospice as an "organized form of neglectful
~ assistance".

~ It seems that the medical care of the orphans
~ is hardly any better. In 1991 the head of
~ Pro Infante in Germany sent a newsletter to
~ adoptive parents:

~ "Please check the validity of the vaccinations
~ of your children. We assume that in some case
~ they have been vaccinated with expired vaccines,
~ or with vaccines that had been rendered useless
~ by improper storage conditions."

~ All this points to one thing, something that
~ Mother Teresa reiterated very frequently in her
~ speeches and addresses -- that she far more
~ concerned with life after death than the mortal
~ life.

~ Mother Teresa's business was : Money for a
~ good conscience. The donors benefited the
~ most from this. The poor hardly. Whosoever
~ believed that Mother Teresa wanted to change
~ the world, eliminate suffering or fight
~ poverty, simply wanted to believe it for
~ their own sakes. Such people did not listen
~ to her. To be poor, to suffer was a goal,
~ almost an ambition or an achievement for her
~ and she imposed this goal upon those under
~ her wings; her actual ordained goal was the
~ hereafter.

Kind she was not, and being kind was not among
her priorities.

And if you'd read the last part of the article,
you'd have seen this in Mother Theresa's
own words:

~ She wrote a few words and hung them
~ outside Mother House:

~ "Tell them we are not here for work,
~ we are here for Jesus.
~
~ We are religious above all else.
~
~ We are not social workers,
~ not teachers,
~ not doctors.
~
~ We are nuns."

Even Mother Theresa agreed that she was
not there to be kind. Unless, of course,
you consider allowing people to endure
unbearable pain, when you possess the
means and the resources to *end the pain*,
is "a kindness".

Mother Theresa, of course, *did* consider
that to be "a kindness".

Webgiant
2003-09-23 23:48:23 EST
On 22 Sep 2003 20:13:46 -0700,
Budokan <tartantiger2001@yahoo.com.au> wrote:

> webgiant <webgiant@rocketmail.com> wrote
>
>> ===================================================
>> http://are.berkeley.edu/~atanu/Writing/teresa.html
>> ===================================================
>> Walter Wuellenweber
>> Mother Teresa: Where are her millions?
>> ===================================================
>> [ This is an English translation of an article from
>> the German magazine STERN which is conservative
>> and enjoys a high circulation in Europe. It
>> appeared in September 1998. ]
>> ===================================================

[article not snipped, appears after
this posting]

> This is a wonderful story, however one would
> expect that social robbery on this scale would
> have to be invertigated by Interpol. The claims
> of fraud and wanton dishonesty, diserve routing.
> Unfortunately without the followup investigation
> to prove these allegations, all we have here is
> a "Gossip" collumn.

And thanks to the Mother Theresa method of
"recordkeeping", any "investigation" would be
a joke. After all, reading the article one
discovers that the Missionary of Charity
keeps records in a way which would make Enron
or Charles Keating proud:

>> For book-keeping the sisters use school
>> notebooks, in which they write in cramped
>> penciled figures. Until they are full.
>> Then everything is erased and the
>> notebook used again. All in order to
>> save.

...and in order to make certain that no
one will ever know how the money is used.
Interpol probably knows that the Missionaries
of Charity

And finally, most people giving money to the
Mother Theresa "charity" have such an erroneous
but naive view of the organization that any
attempt at an investigation by Interpol would
be thwarted by the donors themselves.

Thats the important point to make: the donors
are more interested in feeling good than in
making certain that their money is well-spent.
Because their opinion of the Mother Theresa
organization is so utterly based on the media's
hyping of Mother Theresa, they refuse to accept
the notion that Mother Theresa isn't sending
money to starving people in Ethiopia. After
all, this is Mother Theresa, the Icon!

But STERN attempted an investigation. After
the Missionaries of Charity order REFUSED to
allow STERN a look at the books, they went
to governments to find out the information
charities are legally required to provide to
the countries they are present in.

How about India? Nope, Mother Theresa's
information is "classified":

>> Indian law requires charitable
>> organizations to publish their accounts.
>> Mother Teresa's organization ignores this
>> prescription! It is not known if the
>> Finance Ministry in Delhi who would be
>> responsible for charities' accounts,
>> have the actual figures. Upon STERN's
>> inquiry, the Ministry informed us that
>> this particular query was listed as
>> "classified information".

How about Germany? There at least the
person in charge of finances made a
Freudian slip:

>> The organization has 6 branches in Germany.
>> Here too financial matters are a strict
>> secret. "It's nobody's business how much
>> money we have, I mean to say how little we
>> have," says Sr Pauline, head of the German
>> operations.

> In this modern world it wouldn't take
> much convincing to get a vocal minority
> to scream out against an institution,
> particularly the Catholic Church,

Ironically, the article isn't attacking
the Catholic Church.

The article is *solely* about the financial
misdirection and magical bookkeeping of
Mother Theresa.

Why, I wonder, are you attempting to
change the focus of the article from an
attack on the very real problems of
the difference between the media's
image of Mother Theresa and her
organization as a helpful organization,
and how Mother Theresa spends the money
she receives in donations...to an attack
on the Catholic Church?

Why are you attempting to cover up
Mother Theresa's misdeeds by claiming
that the article really is attacking
the Catholic Church?

No one in the article is attacking the
Catholic Church. Yes, the Vatican Bank
is the *primary beneficiary* of Mother
Theresa's millions. But the article
does not stipulate that the Vatican is
the real institution in charge of Mother
Theresa's misdeeds.

> yet nothing. Just a voice crying in the
> wilderness.

STERN magazine is a *conservative*
German magazine. This isn't some hack
rag promoting some liberal anti-Catholic
bias. STERN has a quite pro-Catholic
and pro-Christian bias. As can be seen
in the *quoted article* where they make
it plain that Mother Theresa, and not
the Vatican, is responsible for the
misdeeds of Mother Theresa and her
organization.

> If this article is more than words,
> prove it to be so.

Didn't read the article I see. STERN
made an effort, they found witnesses,
they uncovered documents, they found
other researchers, and they elicited
statements from expert witnesses.

And its a testament to the media hyping
of Mother Theresa that, after all the
effort STERN went into proving its point
about Mother Theresa, that you would say
"if this article is more than words,
prove it to be so."

After all the proof which STERN found,
you still refuse to believe the fact
that Mother Theresa took in money and
didn't spend it on anyone.

> For the last thing the Catholic Church
> needs is another cover up.

Thankfully for the Catholic Church, neglect
and abuse of children is O.K. when one does
it under the mantle of Catholic Doctrine.

There is no Catholic Doctrine requiring one
to sexually molest children. Thus, priests
sexually molesting boys and girls was a
cover-up which failed.

Mother Theresa, by contrast, could cover up
abuse of patients and neglect of children
with the simple phrase "just following my
vows". Thanks to the media hyping her
image, Mother Theresa could and did get away
with allowing the senseless agony of patients
in her care, and just pawn it all off as
"fulfilling her vows".

> However I would pose that the finishing
> question proposed by the author in an
> attempt to perplex us and confound
> Mother Theresa, is entirely off target.

Why? Mother Theresa takes in millions,
doesn't spend it on anyone, and insists
that all they are there for is the
promotion of the Catholic Religion.

A bunch of nuns, who have taken vows of
POVERTY, with millions of dollars
in cash, assets, jewellery, and rare
documents?

It seems the question is very on target.

> The question should be, and therefore
> the anger directed too, "Why would people
> still send millions to an order with a
> sign on the door that explicitatly
> instructs them that the order is there
> for Jesus and not working for the people?
> (Para-phrased of course)

Ahhh, but the sign on the door is not
part of the general Mother Theresa
literature. Its in Calcutta (where
Mother Theresa was known as the "Ghoul
of Calcutta"), where very few people
have ever gone.

> for with this undertanding there is no
> crime in not passing the money on, since
> a fool and their money are soon parted.
> Said differently, if a person isn't
> running a charity, don't send them
> money.

Agreed. The issue, of course, is that
Mother Theresa is said to do one thing
while doing something completely
different.

Despite being the richest religious
order in the world, their Mother
Superiors state that they are a poor
organization.

Despite being the richest religious
order in the world, their clinics
cause illnesses and debilitating
conditions to get worse because the
sisters refuse to spend any money on
health care, or even provide the
medications donated to them for free.

Despite being the richest religious
order in the world, their orphanages
pack three children to a cot and
deny basic vaccinations to the
children under their care.

And the main point of the article is
that the media, in general, make a
very different picture of Mother
Theresa and her organization. STERN
is simply attempting to
*set the record straight* about
what it is people donating money to
Mother Theresa can expect from her
organization.

Why you think that telling people what
they will get for their donation is
"an attack on Catholicism" is anyone's
guess.

> That being said we have only the
> authors word that the sign or the
> supposed research even exists.

I see. Any research done which proves
that Mother Theresa is not a good
person, but rather a good Catholic, is
automagically "suspect."

All hail the media, Mother Theresa
especially.

>> ===================================================
>> http://are.berkeley.edu/~atanu/Writing/teresa.html
>> ===================================================
>> Walter Wuellenweber
>> Mother Teresa: Where are her millions?
>> ===================================================
>> [ This is an English translation of an article from
>> the German magazine STERN which is conservative
>> and enjoys a high circulation in Europe. It
>> appeared in September 1998. ]
>> ===================================================
>>
>> The Angel of the poor died a year ago. Donations
>> still flow in to her Missionaries of Charity like
>> to no other cause. But the winner of the Nobel
>> Peace Prize vowed to live in poverty. What then,
>> happened to so much money?
>>
>> If there is a heaven, then she is surely there:
>> Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu from Skopje in Macedonia,
>> better known as Mother Teresa. She came to
>> Calcutta on the 6th of January 1929 as an 18 year
>> old sister of the Order of Loreto. 68 years later
>> luminaries from all over the world assembled in
>> Calcutta in order to honour her with a state
>> funeral. In these 68 years she had founded the
>> most successful order in the history of the
>> Catholic church, received the Nobel Peace Prize
>> and became the most famous Catholic of our time.
>>
>> Are doubts permitted, regarding this "monument"?
>>
>> In Calcutta, one meets many doubters.
>>
>> For example, Samity, a man of around 30 with no
>> teeth, who lives in the slums. He is one of the
>> "poorest of the poor" to whom Mother Teresa was
>> supposed to have dedicated her life. With a
>> plastic bag in hand, he stands in a kilometre
>> long queue in Calcutta's Park Street. The poor
>> wait patiently, until the helpers shovel some
>> rice and lentils into their bags. But Samity
>> does not get his grub from Mother Teresa's
>> institution, but instead from the Assembly of
>> God, an American charity, that serves 18000
>> meals here daily.
>>
>> "Mother Teresa?"says Samity, "We have not
>> received anything from her here. Ask in the
>> slums -- who has received anything from the
>> sisters here -- you will find hardly anybody."
>>
>> Pannalal Manik also has doubts. "I don't
>> understand why you educated people in the West
>> have made this woman into such a goddess!"
>> Manik was born some 56 years ago in the
>> Rambagan slum, which at about 300 years of age,
>> is Calcutta's oldest. What Manik has achieved,
>> can well be called a "miracle". He has built
>> 16 apartment buildings in the midst of the
>> slum -- living space for 4000 people. Money
>> for the building materials -- equivalent to
>> DM 10000 per apartment building -- was begged
>> for by Manik from the Ramakrishna Mission
>> [a Indian/Hindu charity], the largest
>> assistance-organization in India. The
>> slum-dwellers built the buildings themselves.
>> It has become a model for the whole of India.
>> But what about Mother Teresa? "I went to her
>> place 3 times," said Manik. "She did not even
>> listen to what I had to say. Everyone on earth
>> knows that the sisters have a lot of money. But
>> no one knows what they do with it!"
>>
>> In Calcutta there are about 200 charitable
>> organizations helping the poor. Mother
>> Teresa's Missionaries of Charity are not
>> amongst the biggest helpers: that contradicts
>> the image of the organization. The name
>> "Mother Teresa" was and is tied to the city of
>> Calcutta. All over the world admirers and
>> supporters of the Nobel Prize winner believe
>> that it must be there that her organization is
>> particularly active in the fight against poverty.
>> "All lies," says Aroup Chatterjee . The doctor
>> who lives in London was born and brought up in
>> Calcutta. Chatterjee who has been working for
>> years on a book on the myth of Mother Teresa,
>> speaks to the poor in the slums of Calcutta, or
>> combs through the speeches of the Nobel Prize
>> winner. "No matter where I search, I only find
>> lies. For example the lies about schools. Mother
>> Theresa has often stated that she runs a school
>> in Calcutta for more than 5000 children. 5000
>> children! -- that would have to be a huge school,
>> one of the biggest in all of India. But where is
>> this school? I have never found it, nor do I know
>> anybody who has seen it!" says Chatterjee.
>>
>> Compared to other charitable organizations in
>> Calcutta, the nuns with the 3 blue stripes are
>> ahead in two respects: they are world famous, and,
>> they have the most money. But how much exactly,
>> has always been a closely guarded secret of the
>> organization. Indian law requires charitable
>> organizations to publish their accounts. Mother
>> Teresa's organization ignores this prescription!
>> It is not known if the Finance Ministry in Delhi
>> who would be responsible for charities' accounts,
>> have the actual figures. Upon STERN's inquiry,
>> the Ministry informed us that this particular
>> query was listed as "classified information".
>>
>> The organization has 6 branches in Germany. Here
>> too financial matters are a strict secret. "It's
>> nobody's business how much money we have, I mean
>> to say how little we have," says Sr Pauline, head
>> of the German operations. Maria Tingelhoff had
>> had handled the organization's book-keeping on a
>> voluntary basis until 1981. "We did see 3 million
>> [DM, 1998; $1,500,000] a year," she remembers.
>> But Mother Teresa never quite trusted the worldly
>> helpers completely. So the sisters took over the
>> financial management themselves in 1981. "Of
>> course I don't know how much money went in, in the
>> years after that, but it must be many multiples of
>> 3 million," estimates Mrs Tingelhoff. "Mother was
>> always very pleased with the Germans."
>>
>> Perhaps the most lucrative branch of the
>> organization is the "Holy Ghost" House in New
>> York's Bronx. Susan Shields served the order
>> there for a total of nine and a half years as
>> Sister Virgin. "We spent a large part of each
>> day writing thank you letters and processing
>> cheques," she says. "Every night around 25
>> sisters had to spend many hours preparing
>> receipts for donations. It was a conveyor belt
>> process: some sisters typed, others made lists
>> of the amounts, stuffed letters into envelopes,
>> or sorted the cheques. Values were between $5
>> and $100.000. Donors often dropped their
>> envelopes filled with money at the door. Before
>> Christmas the flow of donations was often totally
>> out of control. The postman brought sackfuls of
>> letters -- cheques for $50000 were no rarity."
>> Sister Virgin remembers that one year there was
>> about $50 million in a New York bank account.
>> $50 million in one year! -- in a predominantly
>> non-Catholic country. How much then, were they
>> collecting in Europe or the world? It is estimated
>> that worldwide they collected at least $100 million
>> per year -- and that has been going on for many many
>> years.
>>
>> While the income is utter secret, the expenditures
>> are equally mysterious. The order is hardly able
>> to spend large amounts. The establishments
>> supported by the nuns are so tiny (inconspicuous)
>> that even the locals have difficulty tracing them.
>> Often "Mother Teresa's Home" means just a living
>> accommodation for the sisters, with no charitable
>> function. Conspicuous or useful assistance cannot
>> be provided there. The order often receives huge
>> donations in kind, in addition to the monetary
>> munificence. Boxes of medicines land at Indian
>> airports. Donated food grains and powdered milk
>> arrive in containers at Calcutta port. Clothing
>> donations from Europe and the US arrive in
>> unimaginable quantities. On Calcutta's pavement
>> stalls, traders can be seen selling used western
>> labels for 25 rupees (DM1) [$0.50] apiece.
>> Numerous traders call out, "Shirts from Mother,
>> trousers from Mother."
>>
>> Unlike with other charities, the Missionaries of
>> Charity spend very little on their own management,
>> since the organization is run at practically no
>> cost. The approximately 4000 sisters in 150
>> countries form the most treasured workforce of all
>> global multi-million dollar operations. Having
>> taken vows of poverty and obedience, they work for
>> no pay, supported by 300,000 good citizen helpers.
>>
>> By their own admission, Mother Teresa's organization
>> has about 500 locations worldwide. But for purchase
>> or rent of property, the sisters do not need to touch
>> their bank accounts. "Mother always said, we don't
>> spend for that," remembers Sunita Kumar, one the
>> richest women in Calcutta and supposedly Mother
>> Theresa's closest associate outside the order.
>> "If Mother needed a house, she went straight to the
>> owner, whether it was the State or a private person,
>> and worked on him for so long that she eventually
>> got it free."
>>
>> Her method was also successful in Germany. In March
>> the "Bethlehem House" was dedicated in Hamburg, a
>> shelter for homeless women. Four sisters work there.
>> The architecturally conspicuous building cost DM2.5
>> million. The fortunes of the order have not spent a
>> penny toward the amount. The money was collected by
>> a Christian association in Hamburg. With Mother
>> Theresa as figure head it was naturally short work
>> to collect the millions.
>>
>> Mother Teresa saw it as as her God given right never
>> to have to pay anyone for anything. Once she bought
>> food for her nuns in London for GB£500 [$1,100].
>> When she was told she'd have to pay at the till, the
>> diminutive seemingly harmless nun showed her Balkan
>> temper and shouted, "This is for the work of God!"
>> She raged so loud and so long that eventually a
>> businessman waiting in the queue paid up on her
>> behalf.
>>
>> England is one of the few countries where the sisters
>> allow the authorities at least a quick glance at their
>> accounts. Here the order took in DM5.3 million
>> [$2,600,000] in 1991. And expenses (including
>> charitable expenses)? -- around DM360,000 [$180,000]
>> or less than 7%. Whatever happened to the rest of
>> the money? Sister Teresina, the head for England,
>> defensively states, "Sorry we can't tell you that."
>> Every year, according to the returns filed with the
>> British authorities, a portion of the fortune is sent to
>> accounts of the order in other countries. How much to
>> which countries is not declared. One of the recipients
>> is however, always Rome. The fortune of this famous
>> charitable organization is controlled from Rome, -- from
>> an account at the Vatican bank. And what happens with
>> monies at the Vatican Bank is so secret that even God
>> is not allowed to know about it. One thing is sure
>> however - - Mother's outlets in poor countries do not
>> benefit from largesses of the rich countries. The
>> official biographer of Mother Teresa, Kathryn Spink,
>> writes, "As soon as the sisters became established in a
>> certain country, Mother normally withdrew all financial
>> support." Branches in very needy countries therefore
>> only receive start-up assistance. Most of the money
>> remains in the Vatican Bank.
>>
>> STERN asked the Missionaries of Charity numerous times
>> for information about location of the donations, both
>> in writing as well in person during a visit to Mother
>> Teresa's house in Calcutta. The order has never
>> answered.
>>
>> "You should visit the House in New York, then you'll
>> understand what happens to donations," says Eva
>> Kolodziej. The Polish lady was a Missionary of
>> Charity for 5 years. "In the cellar of the homeless
>> shelter there are valuable books, jewellery and gold.
>> What happens to them? -- The sisters receive them with
>> smiles, and keep them. Most of these lie around
>> uselessly forever."
>>
>> The millions that are donated to the order have a
>> similar fate. Susan Shields (formerly Sr Virgin)
>> says, "The money was not misused, but the largest
>> part of it wasn't used at all. When there was a
>> famine in Ethiopia, many cheques arrived marked
>> 'for the hungry in Ethiopia'. Once I asked the
>> sister who was in charge of accounts if I should
>> add up all those very many cheques and send the
>> total to Ethiopia. The sister answered, 'No, we
>> don't send money to Africa.' But I continued to
>> make receipts to the donors, 'For Ethiopia'."
>>
>> By the accounts of former sisters, the finances are
>> a one way street. "We were always told, the fact
>> that we receive more than other orders, shows that
>> God loves Mother Teresa more. ," says Susan Shields.
>> Donations and hefty bank balances are a measure of
>> God's love. Taking is holier than giving.
>>
>> The sufferers are the ones for whom the donations
>> were originally intended. The nuns run a soup
>> kitchen in New York's Bronx. Or, to put in straight,
>> they have it run for them, since volunteer helpers
>> organize everything, including food. The sisters
>> might distribute it. Once, Shields remembers, the
>> helpers made an organizational mistake, so they
>> could not deliver bread with their meals. The
>> sisters asked their superior if they could buy the
>> bread. "Out of the question -- we are a poor
>> organization." came the reply. "In the end, the
>> poor did not get their bread," says Shields.
>> Shields has experienced countless such incidents.
>> One girl from communion class did not appear for her
>> first communion because her mother could not buy her
>> a white communion dress. So she had to wait another
>> year; but as that particular Sunday approached, she
>> had the same problem again. Shields (Sr Virgin)
>> asked the superior if the order could buy the girl a
>> white dress. Again, she was turned down -- gruffly.
>> The girl never had her first communion.
>>
>> Because of the tightfistedness of the rich order,
>> the "poorest of the poor" -- orphans in India -- suffer
>> the most. The nuns run a home in Delhi, in which the
>> orphans wait to be adopted by, in many cases, by
>> foreigners. As usual, the costs of running the home
>> are borne not by the order, but by the future adoptive
>> parents. In Germany the organization called Pro
>> Infante has the monopoly of mediation role for these
>> children. The head, Carla Wiedeking, a personal friend
>> of Mother Teresa's, wrote a letter to Donors, Supporters
>> and Friends which ran:
>>
>> "On my September visit I had to witness 2 or 3
>> children lying in the same cot, in totally
>> overcrowded rooms with not a square inch of
>> playing space. The behavioural problems
>> arising as a result cannot be overlooked."
>>
>> Mrs Wiedeking appeals to the generosity of
>> supporters in view of her powerlessness in the
>> face of the children's great needs. Powerlessness?!
>> In an organization with a billion- fortune, which
>> has 3 times as much money available to it as UNICEF
>> is able to spend in all of India? The Missionaries
>> of Charity has have the means to buy cots and build
>> orphanages, -- with playgrounds. And they have enough
>> money not only for a handful orphans in Delhi but for
>> many thousand orphans who struggle for survival in
>> the streets of Delhi, Bombay and Calcutta.
>>
>> Saving, in Mother Teresa's philosophy, was a central
>> value in itself. All very well, but as her poor
>> organization quickly grew into a rich one, what did
>> she do with her pictures, jewels, inherited houses,
>> cheques or suitcases full of money? If she wished
>> to she could now cater to people not by obsessively
>> indulging in saving, but instead through well
>> thought-out spending. But the Nobel Prize winner
>> did not want an efficient organization that helped
>> people efficiently. Full of pride, she called the
>> Missionaries of Charity the "most disorganized
>> organization in the world". Computers, typewriters,
>> photocopiers are not allowed. Even when they are
>> donated, they are not allowed to be installed. For
>> book-keeping the sisters use school notebooks, in
>> which they write in cramped penciled figures. Until
>> they are full. Then everything is erased and the
>> notebook used again. All in order to save.
>>
>> For a sustainable charitable system, it would have
>> been sensible to train the nuns to become nurses,
>> teachers or managers. But a Missionary of Charity
>> nun is never trained for anything further.
>>
>> Fueled by her desire for un-professionalism, Mother
>> Teresa decisions from year to year became even more
>> bizarre. Once, says Susan Shields, the order bought
>> an empty building from the City of New York in order
>> to look after AIDS patients. Purchase price:
>> $1 dollar. But since handicapped people would also
>> be using the house, NY City management insisted on
>> the installation of a lift (elevator). The offer of
>> the lift was declined: to Mother they were a sign of
>> wealth. Finally the nuns gave the building back to
>> the City of New York.
>>
>> While the Missionaries of Charity have already
>> withheld help from the starving in Ethiopia or the
>> orphans in India -- despite having received donations
>> in their names -- there are others who are being
>> actively harmed by the organization's ideology of
>> disorganization. In 1994, Robin Fox, editor of the
>> prestigious medical journal Lancet, in a commentary
>> on the catastrophic conditions prevailing in Mother
>> Teresa's homes, shocked the professional world by
>> saying that any systematic operation was foreign to
>> the running of the homes in India: TB patients were
>> not isolated, and syringes were washed in lukewarm
>> water before being used again. Even patients in
>> unbearable pain were refused strong painkillers, not
>> because the order did not have them, but on principle.
>> "The most beautiful gift for a person is that he can
>> participate in the suffering of Christ," said Mother
>> Teresa. Once she had tried to comfort a screaming
>> sufferer, "You are suffering, that means Jesus is
>> kissing you." The sufferer screamed back, furious,
>> "Then tell your Jesus to stop kissing me."
>>
>> The English doctor Jack Preger once worked in the
>> home for the dying. He says, "If one wants to give
>> love, understanding and care, one uses sterile
>> needles. This is probably the richest order in the
>> world. Many of the dying there do not have to be
>> dying in a strictly medical sense." The British
>> newspaper Guardian described the hospice as an "
>> organized form of neglectful assistance".
>>
>> It seems that the medical care of the orphans is
>> hardly any better. In 1991 the head of Pro Infante
>> in Germany sent a newsletter to adoptive parents:
>>
>> "Please check the validity of the vaccinations
>> of your children. We assume that in some case
>> they have been vaccinated with expired vaccines,
>> or with vaccines that had been rendered useless
>> by improper storage conditions."
>>
>> All this points to one thing, something that
>> Mother Teresa reiterated very frequently in her
>> speeches and addresses -- that she far more
>> concerned with life after death than the mortal
>> life.
>>
>> Mother Teresa's business was : Money for a good
>> conscience. The donors benefited the most from
>> this. The poor hardly. Whosoever believed that
>> Mother Teresa wanted to change the world,
>> eliminate suffering or fight poverty, simply
>> wanted to believe it for their own sakes. Such
>> people did not listen to her. To be poor, to
>> suffer was a goal, almost an ambition or an
>> achievement for her and she imposed this goal
>> upon those under her wings; her actual ordained
>> goal was the hereafter.
>>
>> With growing fame, the founder of the order
>> became somewhat conscious of the misconceptions
>> on which the Mother Teresa phenomenon was based.
>> She wrote a few words and hung them outside
>> Mother House:
>>
>> "Tell them we are not here for work,
>> we are here for Jesus.
>>
>> We are religious above all else.
>>
>> We are not social workers,
>> not teachers,
>> not doctors.
>>
>> We are nuns."
>>
>> One question then remains: For what, in that
>> case, do nuns need so much money?
>> ===================================================

Chain Breaker
2003-09-24 03:43:32 EST
> From the article you *conveniently snipped*
I snip whatever I feel like snipping. If anyone is interested in
reading the article they just need to click on the one above mine. Not
difficult, is it?
If it makes you feel better peddling hatred you are free to do so. I
am not a Catholic, not even a Christian, so it's no skin off my nose.
I was of the opinion that she was a pretty decent human being. You
don't think so, that's OK. But you can't disagree that she pre-empted
attitudes like yours.

AuntieLib
2003-09-24 15:40:44 EST
Chain Breaker wrote:
> > From the article you *conveniently snipped*
> I snip whatever I feel like snipping. If anyone is interested in
> reading the article they just need to click on the one above mine. Not
> difficult, is it?

How rude. (And, yeah, it can be very difficult, depending on which
newsreader one uses.)

> If it makes you feel better peddling hatred you are free to do so. I
> am not a Catholic, not even a Christian, so it's no skin off my nose.
> I was of the opinion that she was a pretty decent human being.

He merely pointed out that your "opinion" (and many millions just like
yours) was wrong. Dangerously, woefully, pathetically wrong.

> You don't think so, that's OK. But you can't disagree that she pre-empted
> attitudes like yours.

It is a sad commentary on the delusions of the religious (whether you
are among them or not) that they believe what they want to believe, or
what they are told to believe and facts have little to do with it.
Mother Theresa's reputation desperately needs a makeover. She is on
her way to sainthood within the Catholic church. She is constantly
held up as the epitome of "goodness" and "charity" when, in reality,
she "helped" no one but herself and her bosses' bank balance. She
received millions of dollars from good-hearted people who thought they
were helping flood victims, children, the ill and the poor and she
sent most every penny of it to Rome. She is directly responsible for
a whole lot of the misery that exists in Calcutta with her denial of
medical care and family planning options to the women she publicly
supported.

Hers is a hypocrisy beyond measure and no opportunity to point this
out should be missed. (She denied pain medication to those in her
hospitals because she thought suffering was good for their souls and
yet got for herself the best medical care the United States had to
offer.)

All of this is documented fact and yet people who believe in her
saintliness refuse to hear any of it, preferring the myth to the
reality. (Her financial dealings are a matter of public record in
London and the United States and in India but, big surprise, Indian
officials trying to protect the image won't allow those records to be
viewed even though their doing so is against the law.)

Pointing out the truth behind the legend that is Mother Theresa is not
"peddling hatred" but an attempt to balance the scales. The simple
answer to the question "Where Are Her Millions?" is - she didn't use
it to build schools or hospitals or to help victims of flood or
famine, she transferred it to the Vatican Bank. That is something
that can't be stated often enough.

elizabeth
aa#2098
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
"The easy confidence with which I know another man's religion
is folly teaches me to suspect that my own is also."
Mark Twain
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
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