45 Profound Quotes by Mother Teresa to Inspire a Better World

You’ll literally feel the selfless compassion bleeding through these Mother Teresa quotes.

As a mentor, motivational speaker, and author, I’ve always been drawn to the wisdom and compassion of Mother Teresa. Her life and words have been a constant source of inspiration for me, exemplifying the power of love, kindness, and service.

Mother Teresa, born Anjezë Gonxhe Bojaxhiu on August 26, 1910, in Skopje, Macedonia. She founded the Missionaries of Charity, a Roman Catholic congregation that helps those in need, and her selfless work touched the lives of countless individuals.

Though some of her views may have been controversial, Mother Teresa’s unwavering commitment to spreading love and compassion is undeniable. Her famous quote, “I was once asked why I don’t participate in anti-war demonstrations. I said that I will never do that, but as soon as you have a pro-peace rally, I’ll be there,” resonates deeply with my own philosophy of focusing on positivity and unity to overcome challenges and make the world a better place.

Inspired by her profound words, I have compiled 50 of the most impactful Mother Teresa quotes from her books, such as “Love: The Words and Inspiration of Mother Teresa” and “Where There Is Love, There is God,” as well as from her interviews. These quotes serve as a powerful reminder that, despite our differences and the struggles we face, perseverance, love, and compassion can enable us to rise above and become catalysts for constructive societal change.

Powerful Quotes by Mother Teresa on Kindness and Love

1. “If you judge people, you have no time to love them.” – Mother Teresa

Quotes by Mother Teresa about judging

2. “Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.” – Mother Teresa

3. “I know God won’t give me anything I can’t handle. I just wish he didn’t trust me so much.” – Mother Teresa

4. “Every time you smile at someone, it is an action of love, a gift to that person, a beautiful thing.” – Mother Teresa

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5. “Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless.” – Mother Teresa

6. “God doesn’t require us to succeed; he only requires that you try.” – Mother Teresa

7. “Live simply so others may simply live.” – Mother Teresa

8. “Prayer is not asking. Prayer is putting oneself in the hands of God, at His disposition, and listening to His voice in the depth of our hearts.” – Mother Teresa

9. “I can do things you cannot, you can do things I cannot; together we can do great things.” – Mother Teresa

10. “Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies.” – Mother Teresa

11. Being unwanted, unloved, uncared for, forgotten by everybody, I think that is a much greater hunger, a much greater poverty than the person who has nothing to eat.” – Mother Teresa

12. “Do not think that love, in order to be genuine, has to be extraordinary. What we need is to love without getting tired.” – Mother Teresa

13. “Do not wait for leaders; do it alone, person to person.” – Mother Teresa

14. “Joy is a net of love by which you can catch souls.” – Mother Teresa

Quotes by Mother Teresa about joy

15. “Good works are links that form a chain of love.” – Mother Teresa

Inspiring Quotes by Mother Teresa on Charity

16. “I am a little pencil in the hand of a writing God who is sending a love letter to the world.” – Mother Teresa

17. “It is a kingly act to assist the fallen.” – Mother Teresa

18. “I do not pray for success, I ask for faithfulness.” – Mother Teresa

19. “I have found the paradox, that if you love until it hurts, there can be no more hurt, only more love.” – Mother Teresa

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20. “I think I’m more difficult than critical.” – Mother Teresa

21. “I try to give to the poor people for love what the rich could get for money. No, I wouldn’t touch a leper for a thousand pounds; yet I willingly cure him for the love of God.” – Mother Teresa

22. I want you to be concerned about your next-door neighbor. Do you know your next-door neighbor?” – Mother Teresa

23. “If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.” – Mother Teresa

24. “If you can’t feed a hundred people, then feed just one.” – Mother Teresa

25. “If we want a love message to be heard, it has got to be sent out. To keep a lamp burning, we have to keep putting oil in it.” – Mother Teresa

Mother Teresa Quotes On Humanity

26. “It’s not how much we give but how much love we put into giving” — Mother Teresa

27. “Helping hands are better than praying lips” — Mother Teresa

28. “We do not need guns and bombs to bring peace, we need love and compassion.” — Mother Teresa

29. “A life not lived for others is not a life”. — Mother Teresa

30. “I prefer you to make mistakes in kindness than work miracles in unkindness.” — Mother Teresa

31. “If I ever become a Saint–I will surely be one of ‘darkness.’ I will continually be absent from Heaven–to light the light of those in darkness on earth”. — Mother Teresa

32. “I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.” — Mother Teresa

33. “Love begins by taking care of the closest ones – the ones at home”. — Mother Teresa

34. “They are every human being’s entitlement by virtue of his humanity”. — Mother Teresa

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35. “Do ordinary things with extraordinary love”. — Mother Teresa

Mother Teresa Quotes About Service

36. “Never worry about numbers. Help one person at a time and always start with the person nearest you”. — Mother Teresa

37. “Charity isn’t about pity; it is about love”. — Mother Teresa

38. “At the heart of life is service”. — Mother Teresa

39. “Love is a fruit in season at all times and within reach of every hand”. — Mother Teresa

40.“Prayer in action is love, love in action is service”. — Mother Teresa

41.“The most terrible poverty is loneliness, and the feeling of being unloved.” — Mother Teresa

42. “Spread love everywhere you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.” — Mother Teresa

43. “‎Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment.” — Mother Teresa

44. “True love is love that causes us pain, that hurts, and yet brings us joy.” — Mother Teresa

45. “Never worry about numbers. Help one person at a time and always start with the person nearest you.” — Mother Teresa

Which of these beautiful quotes by Mother Teresa touched you the most, and why?

As you can see, Mother Teresa was big on love, giving, and being there for others.

Truth is, we all can love more and lend a helping hand more often.

We are in a time when people are more selfish and take their – and other’s lives – for granted.

Perhaps, these quotes by Mother Teresa will inspire you (and others) to start where she left off; helping the less fortunate and loving all despite our differences.

Which of these Mother Teresa quotes was your favorite?

Do you have any other inspirational quotes to add?

Let us know in the comment section below.

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  1. Robert

    February 23, 2021 at 10:17 PM

    What about her quote , if you have to choose between being right and keeping peace always choose peace. That is a great one!

  2. Carol

    October 28, 2020 at 11:53 PM

    I don’t remember seeing it here: “Do ordinary things with extraordinary love.”


    October 25, 2020 at 11:11 AM

    “Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.” – Mother Teresa

  4. jesim akram

    March 17, 2020 at 11:22 PM

    excellent content on mother Teresa quotes.

    “I can do things you cannot, you can do things I cannot; together we can do great things.”

    here, you can share mother teresa quotes.
    Thank you

  5. Janette Martinez

    October 1, 2019 at 10:07 PM

    1.) “If you judge people, you have no time to love them.

  6. Chris Karlik

    May 12, 2019 at 11:45 AM

    “It is a poverty to decide that a child must die so that you may live as you wish.” I would love to hear world leaders say something similar.

    • Janette Martinez

      October 1, 2019 at 10:04 PM

      I agree!

  7. Caroline

    April 30, 2019 at 9:38 PM

    “Our life of poverty is as necessary as the work itself. Only in heaven will we see how much we owe to the poor for helping us to love God better because of them.” – Mother Teresa

    This Quotation runs very deep into my soul, as we always believe the poor owes us, But understanding our purpose in this life makes it Beautiful to accept their purpose in our lives.

  8. Loretta Helton da Silva

    May 25, 2018 at 1:17 PM

    Thank you so much for these awesome quotes from Mother Teresa. I am trying to raise awareness for the Native American children who are cared for by St Josephs Indian School. I wanted to include one of her quotes and actually found two. This is a fund raiser on my Facebook page, but wanted everyone to know it’s not for me, it’s for the children so they can donate without going through Facebook. God Bless You.

    • Joann Stone

      September 20, 2018 at 10:55 AM

      Hello, I too love all her quotes! She was a special woman. Was looking for special quotes to send to my Native American friends, even though their lives are already filled with love ,kindness and pease !

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