World Stamps

Kosovo’s Mother Teresa stamp wins award for best religious issue of 2017

Nov 25, 2017, 4 AM

By Linn’s Staff

A stamp honoring Mother Teresa won the 2017 St. Gabriel award for the best religious stamp issued in 2016.

Kosovo issued this 2.10 stamp Aug. 15, 2016, to honor her canonization as a saint on Sept. 4 of that year (Scott 311).

The design by Dijana Toskas and Hilmijeta Apuk shows a portrait of Mother Teresa praying and includes words from her poem Farewell, written while she was first traveling as a missionary to Calcutta.

Named after “the Lord’s postman,” St. Gabriel, this award for religious stamps was established in 1969 in Verona, Italy.

The award ceremony is traditionally hosted by the town of Legnago, birthplace of composer Antonio Salieri.

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Stamps from Vatican City and Belgium received special prizes at this year’s ceremony held Oct. 1.

Vatican City earned a special accolade for its series of stamps illustrating the seven works of mercy. Stefano Morri, David Maraskin, Orietta Rossi and Daniela Fusco created the designs for these stamps.

The series began Feb. 1, 2016, with two stamps representing “feed the hungry” and “give drink to the thirsty” (Scott 1615-1616).

The series continued throughout the year with two stamps each issued May 10 and Sept. 13 and one stamp on Nov. 17 (Scott 1624-1625, 1632-1633 and 1637).

These stamps were also part of a larger series commemorating the Jubilee of Mercy.

Belgium earned special mention for its stamp issued Oct. 24, 2016, to promote tolerance (Scott 2802).

The stamp design reproduces Lieve Blancquaert’s photograph showing leaders of three religions: Rabbi Albert Guigui, Imam Khalid Benhaddou and Bishop of Antwerp Johan Bonny.

The St. Gabriel award jury included Cardinal Christoph Shonborn, archbishop of Vienna; Luigi Bressan, bishop emeritus of Trento; Jamil Nassif Abib; Michalak Bogdan; Franco Filanci; Giorgio Migliavacca; Wilhelm Remes; Annemarie Stresser; and Jan Vallo.