Wednesday, September 24, 2008

A Woman for All Seasons

In 1998, Peggy Noonan wrote about her experience at the National Prayer Breakfast of 1994 in Washington, D.C., where Mother Teresa was invited to speak to a gathering of political, social, and business leaders. The article never fails to move and inspire me.

"Her speech was a great success in that it was clear and strong, seriously meant, seriously stated, seriously argued, and seriously received. She spoke with a complete indifference to the conventions of speech giving, not only in her presentation— reading the text as if she were reading some dry old document aloud, rarely looking up, rarely using her voice to emphasize, rarely using inflection, expression, or gesturing—but in her message. She softened nothing, did not deflect division but defined it. She came with a sword.

"She could do this, of course, because she had a natural and unknown authority. She has the standing of a saint. May you pursue and achieve such standing as you think and work and write and speak."

Read the full article here.

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