Mother Teresa Opens Home for Women, Children

<i> From Associated Press</i>

Mother Teresa, with Hillary Rodham Clinton at her side, dedicated a shelter Monday in the nation’s capital for women and their newborns with the goal of preventing abortions.

Sidestepping her disagreement with Mother Teresa on abortion rights, Mrs. Clinton said the shelter “will grow to have meaning in people’s lives as lives here are saved and changed.”

Mother Teresa said she was “very happy” in the house and said that the babies would begin arriving “as soon as possible . . . . Now that Mrs. Clinton has opened the house, they’ll pour in.”


On a previous occasion, Mother Teresa voiced opposition to abortion when she shared a platform at a prayer breakfast with Mrs. Clinton, who supports abortion rights.

On Monday, however, she said that she and the First Lady had made “amends” and thanked Mrs. Clinton for visiting her on her recent trip to India. Both sought to highlight areas where they agreed.

Asked by reporters where they found common ground, Mrs. Clinton said: “Well, in children, and doing everything we can.”

Mother Teresa said: “Giving tender love and care . . . . “ Mrs. Clinton added: “That’s right, for every child.”

Mother Teresa grasped the First Lady’s hand often through the tour and during their comments.

Mother Teresa, asked if she were bringing peace to the house, said: “Mother Teresa doesn’t give peace to anybody--she makes everybody work.”


The First Lady pleaded for more Americans to adopt children, citing some 400,000 children in orphanages across the country. She urged potential parents not to be discouraged by a few high-profile cases in which courts have taken children from adoptive parents.

It is Mother Teresa’s fourth shelter in the area, following others that serve the poor and victims of AIDS. She recalled the words of Jesus, saying that the person who receives a small child “receives me.”

Local Catholic charities will assist in the operation of Mother Teresa’s Home for Infants. Her order of Missionaries of Charities is providing nuns to operate it.