Pope Francis approved a second miracle attributed to Mother Teresa, making way for her sainthood 18 years after the Roman Catholic nun’s death, the Vatican said Friday. Mother Teresa is likely to be canonized on Sept. 4, 2016, according to Avennire, an Italian Catholic newspaper affiliated to the Italian bishop’s conference.
Francis approved the miracle Thursday afternoon on his 79th birthday, the newspaper reported. The nun’s miracle reportedly involved a mysterious healing of a Brazilian man suffering from multiple brain abscesses within a day of being in a coma in 2008. The Vatican confirmed that his wife’s prayers for Mother Teresa’s intervention cured him, the Associated Press reported.
Mother Teresa was beatified -- the first step to sainthood -- in 2003 by Pope John Paul II after the Vatican said an Indian woman’s tumor was cured after she prayed to the nun. Beatification requires one miracle by the Catholic Church, while for sainthood, proofs of at least two miracles are needed.
Mother Teresa is known for her charity work helping the poor, sick and the dying in the slums of the eastern Indian city of Kolkata -- then known as Calcutta -- for which the nun was nicknamed the “Saint of the Gutters.” She established the Missionaries of Charity in the city.
"We have now received an official confirmation from Vatican that the Mother would be given sainthood. We are very excited and happy about it," Sunita Kumar, spokeswoman of the Missionaries of Charity, told Press Trust of India news agency.
Born Agnes Gonxhe Bojaxhiu in Skopje, Macedonia in 1910, Mother Teresa was given Indian citizenship in 1951. The 1979 Nobel Peace Prize winner passed away on Sept. 5, 1997, at the age of 87.