Act III: Appealing to Pope for Help

In her desperation, Mother Theresa called on Pope Pius IX.

As Archbishop von Reisach continued to pressure Mother Theresa, she was reaching out to other influential members of the hierarchical Church. She shared her desperation and deep inner turmoil with Pope Pius IX.

Pope Pius IX
Pope Pius IX

It was into this climate of ecclesiastical and political turmoil that Mother Theresa attempted to have the Holy Rule approved. Her letters to Pope Pius IX exemplify her honesty, clear thought, and deep faith. We read in them the fidelity of a founding mother who cared deeply about each of her daughters, her longing to be faithful to the church, and her determination to follow the will of her mentors, Wittmann and Job.

There is personal correspondence from Mother Theresa to Pope Pius IX from letter #1143, before April 1852, until his death in 1878. To read more of Mother Theresa’s letters to Pope Pius the IX, consider the following: letter #1169 was written by Sister Maria Foreria because Mother Theresa was told she could no longer be Superior. Letter #1275 is focused on the importance of a woman leading a woman's congregation. In letter #3855, Mother Theresa begs for final approval of the rule in 1865. Underlined words in the letters were in the original sources.

As a gift from the congregation, Sister Margaret Cortona presented him with a hand made bell cord that was so delicately woven, that he had it sewn into a vestment.

In 1865, he officially approved the Rule of the School Sisters of Notre Dame as seen in letter #3918.


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