Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Series on Mother Teresa

About a year ago, I picked up a great book at St. Rita's gift shop called "Jesus, The Word to be Spoken." It is a compilation of prayers and meditations from Mother Teresa's writings and talks to her third order Missionaries of Charity. The next several posts that I get around to will be excerpts from this book in Mother's own words on the poor, the sacrament of confession, Jesus in the Eucharist and respect for life.

"We are the servants of the poor. We give free whole-hearted service to the poor. In the world, people are paid for their work. We are paid by God. We are bound by a vow to love and serve the poor, and to live as poor with the poor."

"Do we treat the poor as our dustbins to give whatever we cannot use or eat? I cannot eat this food, so I will give it to the poor. I cannot use this thing or that piece of cloth, so I will give it to the poor. Am I then sharing the poverty of the poor? Do I identify with the poor I serve? Am I one of them? Do I share with them as Jesus shares with me?"

"One evening a gentleman came to our house and told me 'There is a Hindu family with eight children and they have not eaten for a long time. Do something for them.' I took some rice and I went straightaway. I could see in the children's faces terrible hunger. And yet when the mother took the rice, she divided it into two portions, and went out. When she came back I said 'Where did you go? What did you do?' She gave me one answer only:'They are hungry too.' She had next-door neighbors, a Muslim family, and she knew that they were hungry. I did not bring any more rice for that day because I wanted them to experience the joy of giving. I was not surprised that she gave, but I was surprised that she knew that they were hungry. Do we know? Do we have time to know? Do we have time to even smile at anybody"?

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