by Ken Rolheiser
Poco a poco in the field of the Lord

I recently received a thank you card for a wedding gift my wife and I gave a year ago. Of all the wedding gift thank you cards I have received over the years this one was the most meaningful.

The newly weds took gifts and donations of money from their wedding and planned a winter trip to the Baja Mission in Mexico. There they contributed to an orphanage project, built kitchen cupboards and picture frames. As well they worked in a nursery, a macademia nut orchard and a nut house (sorry, couldn’t resist).

In his homily “Little Seeds of Hope” Father Brendan McGuire describes a trip that his parishioners have made to Nicaragua over several years. On the first trip they spent time digging holes in an open field and placing rebar. Then they left.

Another missionary group did the cementing and continued the project. And so the construction continued with volunteers and benefactors from different churches and groups.

An open field is transformed into two buildings with 100 children in the school, all dressed up with proud clean uniforms, coming from homes with dirt floors, stick and stone roofs. “Poco a poco. Little by little we make a difference.”

“May we focus then on planting the little seeds
or the little yeasts in our life,” McGuire says.

And we don’t have to fly around the world to change the world. “If you want to change the world, go home and love your family.” St Theresa of Calcutta

Mother Theresa continues, “Stay where you are. Find your own Calcutta. Find the sick, the suffering, and the lonely right there where you are — in your own homes and in your own families, in your workplaces and in your schools.

“You can find Calcutta all over the world, if you have the eyes to see. Everywhere, wherever you go, you find people who are unwanted, unloved, uncared for, just rejected by society — completely forgotten, completely left alone.”

“Just do small things with great love.” Saint Theresa of Calcutta

“In our lives,’ Father Brendan McGuire says, “it comes down to doing the little things well. The little things make the difference. May we be the ones who are kind and
gentle; …the ones who are first to forgive; …the ones who are merciful; …the ones who are loving.

“When presented with bitterness and anger and pettiness; that we are willing to absorb in all that and give back love; give back gentleness; give back compassion.
And above all of those, heartfelt love.”

“And over all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfectness” Colossians 3:14.

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