VATICAN CITY -

Pope Francis has praised Mother Teresa as the merciful saint who defended the lives of the unborn, sick and abandoned - and who shamed world leaders for the "crimes of poverty they themselves created."
    
In elevating the tiny nun to sainthood, Francis held St. Teresa up as a model for today's Christians during his homily for the nun who cared for the "poorest of the poor."
    
Speaking from the steps of St. Peter's Basilica, Francis said St. Teresa spent her life "bowing down before those who were spent, left to die on the side of the road, seeing in them their God-given dignity."
    
He added: "She made her voice heard before the powers of the world, so that they might recognize their guilt for the crimes of poverty they themselves created." As if to emphasize the point, Francis repeated the "the crimes of poverty they themselves created."