Report text available as:

  • TXT
  • PDF   (PDF provides a complete and accurate display of this text.) Tip ?
104th Congress                                                   Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

 2d Session                                                     104-796
_______________________________________________________________________


 
  TO CONFER HONORARY CITIZENSHIP OF THE UNITED STATES ON AGNES GONXHA 
                 BOJAXHIU, ALSO KNOWN AS MOTHER TERESA

                                _______
                                

 September 17, 1996.--Referred to the House Calendar and ordered to be 
                                printed

_______________________________________________________________________


 Mr. Hyde, from the Committee on the Judiciary, submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                      [To accompany H.J. Res. 191]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on the Judiciary, to whom was referred the 
joint resolution (H.J. Res. 191) to confer honorary citizenship 
of the United States on Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu, also known as 
Mother Teresa, having considered the same, report favorably 
thereon without amendment and recommend that the joint 
resolution do pass.

                          PURPOSE AND SUMMARY

    The purpose of House Joint Resolution 191 is to confer 
honorary United States citizenship upon Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu, 
also known as Mother Teresa, in recognition of her many 
humanitarian efforts around the world.

                               BACKGROUND

    The Committee believes that American citizenship is the 
highest honor that our country can confer upon a person who is 
a citizen of another land. The granting of an honorary 
citizenship is the admission and welcoming of that person into 
our national family. Honorary United States citizenship has 
only been bestowed on individuals three times in our history. 
As stated by this Committee in the past, any decision to grant 
honorary citizenship is unique and cannot be treated as a 
precedent.
    It should also be noted that ``honorary citizenship'' is a 
symbolic gesture. It does not grant any additional legal rights 
in the United States or in international law. It also does not 
impose additional duties or responsibilities, in the United 
States or internationally, on the honoree.
    In line with the above statements, the resolution notes 
that the United States has conferred honorary citizenship on 
only three occasions in the last two hundred years, and that 
honorary citizenship is and should always be an extraordinary 
honor not lightly conferred and rarely given.
    This resolution contains statements defining the 
extraordinary act of conferring honorary citizenship and 
acknowledging the many efforts made by Mother Teresa which are 
the basis for granting her honorary United States citizenship.
    The resolution acknowledges Mother Teresa's tireless work 
with orphaned and abandoned children, the poor, the sick, and 
the dying; that she founded the Missionaries of Charity in 
1950; and has taken in those who have been rejected as 
``unacceptable'' and cared for them when no one else would, 
regardless of their race, color, creed, or condition. September 
10, 1946 was Mother Teresa's ``day of decision''. On that date 
she requested permission from her superior to leave the 
cloister to go work in the Calcutta slums. On that day, the 
world was given the gift of Mother Teresa's personal life 
mission to protect the unprotected. After four years in 
Calcutta, she received approval to institute the Missionaries 
of Charity in Calcutta. The Missionaries of Charity currently 
operates more than 50 schools, orphanages and houses for the 
poor in many countries. Her congregration includes several 
thousand sisters and brothers working with the poor, orphaned, 
disabled, sick, and dying to provide them with sustenance, 
medical assistance and education.
    This resolution further notes that Mother Teresa has 
received numerous honors, including the 1979 Nobel Peace Prize 
and the 1985 Presidential Medal of Freedom. Among the other 
honors awarded Mother Teresa are: the 1971 Pope John XXIII 
Peace prize; the 1973 Templeton Foundation prize; the 1980 
Bharat Ratna (Star of India); the 1989 Woman of the Year award; 
the 1992 Notre Dame University award; the 1994 U Thant Peace 
award. In 1982, Mother Teresa was named an honorary citizen of 
Assisi. In 1992, she was also named an honorary fellow by the 
Royal College of Surgeons Ireland.
    Mother Teresa has worked in areas all over the world, 
including the United States, to provide comfort to the world's 
neediest. Mother Teresa's faith and mission have infused a 
world beset by warfare, disease, and poverty. She has affirmed 
more so than any other single person of our age, and as few 
persons have throughout the course of human history, the 
intrinsic value and dignity of every human life. Whether with 
the poorest of the poor in Calcutta, the victims of sectarian 
violence in Beirut, or those suffering from AIDS in New York, 
Washington, D.C., and other American cities, she has defined 
the reach of human compassion.
    Mother Teresa through her Missionaries of Charity has 
established many soup kitchens, emergency shelters for women, 
shelters for unwed mothers, shelters for men, after-school and 
summer camp programs for children, homes for the dying, prison 
ministry, nursing homes, and shut-in ministry within the United 
States.
    Mother Teresa has been called a ``saint'' by people of all 
religious denominations. Through her many selfless acts, she 
has inspired millions to realize that in their own daily lives, 
they too are capable of doing ``something beautiful for God''.
    For all of the aforementioned reasons, the Committee 
believes it is appropriate to bestow upon Mother Teresa our 
country's highest honor.

                        COMMITTEE CONSIDERATION

    On September 11, 1996, the Committee met in open session 
and order reported favorably the joint resolution H.J. Res. 
191, without amendment by voice vote, a quorum being present.

                      COMMITTEE OVERSIGHT FINDINGS

    In compliance with clause 2(l)(3)(A) of rule XI of the 
Rules of the House of Representatives, the Committee reports 
that the findings and recommendations of the Committee, based 
on oversight activities under clause 2(b)(1) of rule X of the 
Rules of the House of Representatives, are incorporated in the 
descriptive portions of this report.

         COMMITTEE ON GOVERNMENT REFORM AND OVERSIGHT FINDINGS

    No findings or recommendations of the Committee on 
Government Reform and Oversight were received as referred to in 
clause 2(l)(3)(D) of rule XI of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives.

               NEW BUDGET AUTHORITY AND TAX EXPENDITURES

    Clause 2(l)(3)(B) of House rule XI is inapplicable because 
this legislation does not provide new budgetary authority or 
increased tax expenditures.

               CONGRESSIONAL BUDGET OFFICE COST ESTIMATE

    In compliance with clause 2(l)(C)(3) of rule XI of the 
Rules of the House of Representatives, the Committee sets 
forth, with respect to the joint resolution, H.J. Res. 191, the 
following estimate and comparison prepared by the Director of 
the Congressional Budget Office under section 403 of the 
Congressional Budget Act of 1974:

                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                Washington, DC, September 12, 1996.
Hon. Henry J. Hyde,
Chairman, Committee on the Judiciary,
House of Representatives, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
reviewed H.J. Res. 191, a joint resolution to confer honorary 
citizenship of the United States on Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhui, also 
known as Mother Teresa. The joint resolution was ordered 
reported by the House Committee on the Judiciary on September 
11, 1996. CBO estimates that enacting H.J. Res. 191 would 
result in no significant cost to the federal government. We 
estimate that enacting the joint resolution would not affect 
direct spending or receipts; therefore, pay-as-you-go 
procedures would not apply.
    H.J. Res. 191 would impose no private-sector or 
intergovernmental mandates as defined by the Unfunded Mandates 
Reform Act of 1995 (Public Law 104-4), and CBO estimates that 
its enactment would have no impact on the budgets of state, 
local, or tribal governments.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Mark 
Grabowicz.
            Sincerely,
                                              James L. Blum
                                   (For June E. O'Neill, Director).

                     INFLATIONARY IMPACT STATEMENT

    Pursuant to clause 2(l)(4) of rule XI of the Rules of the 
House of Representatives, the Committee estimates that H.J. 
Res. 191 will have no significant inflationary impact on prices 
and costs in the national economy.