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Mustard Seed Communities Lenten Reflections

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LENTEN Reflections journey with

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This booklet is dedicated to Our Lady Pillar of Faith Our Blessed Mother who accompanied and strengthened Our Lord during His life and passion May she accompany and strengthen us on our earthly journey as well Copyright 2023 Mustard Seed Communities

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The season of Lent is a perfect time to reawaken our hearts to God s unconditional love for each of us When we experience the excitement and fervor in loving the Lord there is no way to contain the joy that fills our souls Lent is a time for intense reflection detachment and self giving as a means of reawakening our hearts This requires us to persevere each day in setting aside time to reflect in sacrificing some personal comforts and in actively seeking to be more generous This Lent as you work on reawakening your heart to the love of God embrace the call to persevere in patience for Jesus declares that everyone who asks receives and everyone who searches finds and for everyone who knocks the door will be opened Luke 11 10 As we begin our Lenten journey let us thank God for His unceasing perseverance to reawaken our hearts and for the tremendous joy with which He fills our souls 1 2

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Ash Wednesday As we are marked with ashes today we are reminded that we have been created for something greater than this earthly life Each of us has been loved into being by a God who desires that we join Him in His heavenly kingdom Each of us is unique each of us is loved and each of us has a role to play in God s divine plan As we enter the season of Lent we are called to reflect on our lives and on what part God wants us to play in his creation Through practices of prayer charity and fasting during this holy season we enter into a deeper relationship with the Lord Through this relationship we find the courage to reach out to others especially those in most need of our love and the love of God These encounters with our vulnerable brothers and sisters allow us to meet Christ and experience the joy that he wishes to share with us Today thank the Lord for the grace He gives us to enter into a relationship with Him Then make a commitment to acts of prayer charity and fasting during these days of Lent in order to deepen that relationship with Him 3 Thursday After Ash Wednesday As we begin the Lenten journey let us remember that this period prepares us to receive Christ the Light This forty day pilgrimage recalls Christ s preparation in the desert before embarking on His public ministry We too should rid ourselves of all unnecessary baggage or obstacles in preparation for our personal ministry to each other and to the entire human family The Lenten period ought to remind us that Jesus took upon Himself the sins of the world once and for all When we deny ourselves through fasting and penance we not only open ourselves to be filled by God s grace but we also allow ourselves to release the burdens of our life into God s hands Today thank God for the grace and freedom attained through Jesus Christ the Suffering Servant and for preparing a clear path for us to Christ the Light of the World 4

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Saturday After Ash Wednesday Friday After Ash Wednesday Lent is a time to get spiritually fit Prayer fasting and alms giving are to be our daily diet so that we may shed our destructive thoughts our unnecessary excesses and our selfish actions It is a time to strengthen our resistance against temptation and to re energize our spirit for the onward journey Let us sincerely commit to practicing acts of penance and be dedicated to this process In this way we will become fit to take up our crosses daily and to live our Christian responsibilities with joy and hope Lent is a time for us to refocus and to draw closer to our Lord If we decide to fast from something are we doing it because it is Lent or because by fasting we are truly growing in our relationship with Christ This year perhaps we should fast from the things that we don t do fast from not going to Mass fast from not praying each day or fast from not spending time in Eucharistic Adoration Instead let us do more of these things because it is through the practice of our faith that we grow in relationship with our Lord This Lent let us do more with Jesus and less without Him And let us pray Jesus I am yours Show me the way Today let us thank God for the invitation He gives us to follow Christ into the desert 5 6

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First Sunday of Lent Jesus encountered the devil in the desert The devil tried to tempt Jesus into taking the easy way out testing God and falling into greed However Jesus knew despite the hunger plaguing His body from 40 days of fasting that the devil could never offer Him anything more valuable than the Father s love As we are still in the early days of Lent we should take this message as a warning The temptations to give in may only grow stronger over the coming weeks However God walks with us through the desert so that we are never alone on this journey If we begin this season by building our reliance on God each day then our ability to persevere down the line will only be strengthened Today we thank God for His commitment to standing by us through all of our temptations Monday of the First Week in Lent Usually when we think of Lent we think about what we should give up This year perhaps we should drop the up and think more about what we should give God allows us many opportunities to give of ourselves to others and Lent calls us in a special way to respond to those calls of God in our lives This year as we enter into this holy season let us pray that the Lord will open our hearts to see what He wants us to give In giving we always receive more than we offer if we give out of love for God and for others Today let us thank God for the opportunities that He gives to us so that we can give to others 7 8

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Tuesday of the First Week in Lent There are many seasons in our lives some are predictable others planned and many others come unexpectedly Whether anticipated or not our lives are impacted in profound ways These seasonal events can bring us joy hope and peace or sorrow anxiety and pain Lent is a predictable season that comes every year but the effect on our lives depends upon our willingness to embrace the challenge of self denial God is with us through every season and even more intensely through the wilderness of our Lenten journey His amazing grace transforms our challenging experiences into a joyful sacrifice Thank God for remaining with you through every phase of life Thank Him for helping you to face each new day Thank Him for His plans to give you hope and a future plans to prosper you not to harm you Jeremiah 29 11 Thank God today for His constant presence in your life 9 Wednesday of the First Week in Lent Be perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect Matthew 5 48 If we take these words seriously then our journey to perfection involves ongoing transformation this means that our lives will continue to change as we listen to and act upon the message of the Gospel Our Lenten practices ought to enable us to garner the strength and resources to defend against temptations which distract us and obstruct God s transforming grace Today let us thank the Lord for this grace which brings us closer to perfection 10

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Friday of the First Week in Lent and your heavenly Father who sees all that is done in secret will reward you Matthew 6 18 During our Lenten journey we are reminded of the need to focus more on the internal transformation of our lives those virtues which our heavenly Father sees Therefore PRAY fervently as Christ did DENY YOURSELF some of your attachments and be filled with the gifts of the Holy Spirit and GIVE generously so that you may receive in abundance from the Father Thursday of the First Week in Lent Our Lord tells us that those who love Him are the ones who observe His commandments It is by living a life of love and service that we grow in love for our God and for our neighbor True love cannot be held inside it must be shared with others Only by sharing love with others do we truly observe God s commandments As the apostle tells us God is love and he that abides in love abides in God and God in him Today let us thank the Good Lord for the gift of His great love for us and ask Him for the grace to always share that love with others 11 Jesus shed His blood to redeem us from sin and to give us hope in eternal life In spite of all the attractions and distractions of our worldly existence we are invited to focus our lives on things of heaven through the message of Jesus Christ Today let us not squander our promised inheritance nor disregard the tremendous effects of Christ s redeeming blood Let us look to HIM with contrite hearts and humble spirits so that our lives may become more and more Christ centered 12

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Saturday of the First Week in Lent Second Sunday of Lent Jesus continually calls us into a relationship with him promising countless blessings if we answer his call I came that they might have life and have it more abundantly Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I will fear no evil for you are with me Psalm 23 4 This promise is just as true today as it was when he spoke these words 2 000 years ago If we respond to our Savior s call and enter into conversation with him each day He will take us deeper into His heart into a relationship that will allow us to live totally for Him and serve Him in extraordinary ways Today let us thank our Lord for the gift of life that He freely gives us and ask Him to draw us ever deeper into a lasting relationship with Him 13 Sometimes Lent can feel as though we are walking through the valley of the shadow of death We may feel surrounded by temptation weighed down by our struggles and abandoned in isolation Yet when we place our trust in God and ask for the grace to fear no evil none of that darkness will harm us Jesus Christ goes before us to face our temptations conquer our struggles and remove the burden of our sins He knows how to protect us and He will never withhold His love from us Today thank God for being the Good Shepherd and guiding us safely through our darkest times 14

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Monday of the Second Week in Lent Tuesday of the Second Week in Lent God create in me a clean heart renew within me a steadfast spirit Psalm 51 10 There is so much for which we ought to be thankful but we are often blinded by the many distractions which shift our focus away from God God is patiently and mercifully waiting for each of us to approach Him with these words of the psalmist so that our Lenten exercises can be fruitful The journey ahead may challenge us with many uncertainties sorrows pain and trials but a clean heart and steadfast spirit will strengthen our HOPE in the crucified and risen Christ Let s not keep God waiting any longer and thank Him today for the transforming effects of His immeasurable love and mercy 15 Jesus spent 40 days in the wilderness facing His detractor in order to strengthen His focus on the tasks ahead Let us use this period of Lent wisely preparing ourselves to clearly see the tremendous greatness of God beyond the blindness of worldly distractions Today let us simply thank God for Jesus and His great love for us 16

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Wednesday of the Second Week in Lent Thursday of the Second Week in Lent Every good deed which we perform is done through the grace and mercy of God because our weaknesses and sinfulness would render our goodness self serving Christ is the light of the world which overcomes the darkness of our human deficiencies but we need to acknowledge His redemptive grace and accept our imperfections in order to purify our deeds Take a moment to pause and think about the many blessings in your life What was going on in your life when you received these blessings What helped you to recognize their presence as a blessing Let us thank God today for the power of His grace and mercy which enables us to live as children of THE light bathed in selflessness and humility 17 While we might not desire it to be this way oftentimes it takes a walk through the dry lonely desert to remove the distractions that keep us from recognizing all the blessings that surround us These last few weeks of Lent should be utilized as an opportunity to further remove those distractions so you can more clearly recognize Christ s gifts and presence in your life come Easter Today thank God for all the blessings in your life 18

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Friday of the Second Week in Lent Saturday of the Second Week in Lent Jesus tells us all where I am going you know the way When Jesus began his passion He looked to His friends to accompany Him on His journey but no one was willing to accept His invitation to follow Him on that path Today Our Lord looks to us to follow in His footsteps and carry His love and mercy into the world The way Our Lord is talking about is the path of faith hope and love With these virtues in our lives we are able to face each new day with confidence and joy And as we continue to grow in each of these virtues we draw nearer and nearer to the heart of Jesus where we will find all that we desire Today let us remember that Jesus is near and thank Him for His great love for us He is here 19 Could you not watch with me for one hour He asked Peter James and John This week let us reflect on the ways Christ asks us to join Him on his journey and set aside a special time of prayer to thank Our Lord for the blessings we have all received 20

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Third Sunday of Lent Monday of the Third Week in Lent Father into your hands I commend my spirit Luke 23 46 Renew in me a steadfast spirit Psalm 51 12 It is a tendency of ours to try and control everything in our lives This control seems to give us a sense of peace However when things don t go our way or we are unable to control a certain situation or person we increasingly become plagued by feelings of uneasiness or distress and suddenly the peace we once felt is unrecognizable At times it is difficult to face the truth about ourselves to accept that we made an incorrect decision or exercised wrong judgment The challenge then is to face the truth with humility and to do the right thing To be humble is not a sign of weakness but rather an expression of our power over human weakness The problem with seeking peace through control is that true peace cannot be forced into existence it is a gift from God When we release our desire for control into the hands of God we create the space within ourselves for Him to fill us with His eternal peace 21 Today give thanks to God for the gift of His peace in the midst of our most distressing moments Today let us begin to renew our spirit by humbly acknowledging our mistakes our faults and sins and asking God for forgiveness and mercy Thank God for offering us the POWER of TRUTH 22

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Tuesday of the Third Week in Lent Wednesday of the Third Week in Lent Perhaps we can view this Lent as a precious gift of time in which to dwell on our blessings rather than our misfortunes concentrate on what we can give to others rather than what we want for ourselves and focus on how we can encourage peace instead of causing strife By purposefully looking outwards to the needs of others rather than focusing on our own situation no matter how serious we believe it is we in our own small way spread the Good News As a result we may feel our hearts lighter our spirits uplifted and our hands open to giving and receiving God s love Always remember that God loves us enough to be concerned about anything that concerns us Do we truly believe this If the answer is yes then why do we keep worrying about tomorrow and the day after Our Lord reminds us to live one day at a time because we will never even in our wildest dreams figure out what tomorrow has in store for us Today take some time to count your blessings and think of ways to share those blessings with others 23 Today thank God for being with us every hour of each day and for helping us to realize that there are so many who are not afforded this privilege because they do not recognize Him 24

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Thursday of the Third Week in Lent Friday of the Third Week in Lent Our Lord was brought before the leaders of the Temple who did not recognize him as the long awaited Messiah Instead they accused him falsely and proclaimed that he should die God loves us so much that He shows us mercy even when we reject betray and hurt Him We really do not deserve His love after all we ve done yet He gives it to us anyway God will never withhold His mercy from us even when we do the same hurtful things over and over He knows that we are weak beings so He also offers us another gift to help battle our temptations grace His unconditional love through the gifts of grace and mercy show us that we must treat others in the same way While Jesus faced his accusers He was alone No one was willing to accompany him in His time of need Even his closest followers stayed away I looked in vain for compassion but there was none and for comforters but I found none Psalm 69 20 In our daily lives we often fail to accompany Our Lord and follow where he leads But even though we fail He is always ready to forgive us and welcome us back This week fast for one day in thanksgiving to God for His love and mercy that are always available to us 25 As we continue our journey through Lent let us be true witnesses to God s generosity working in our lives May our actions mimic Jesus Christ who conquered death so that all may live the fullness of life in God s presence and pray for those who are yet to recognize God s grace and mercy at work in their lives Today thank God for constantly loving you with His grace and mercy 26

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Saturday of the Third Week in Lent Fourth Sunday of Lent As Jesus prepared to return to the Father He prayed for us so that our faith may not fail and so that we will become His faithful followers A true disciple of Jesus is one who never ceases to draw near to Him works to develop a relationship with Him and whose heart aches to love Him more and more You must never grow weary of doing what is right 2 Thessalonians 3 13 Today pray that God will grant us the desire to truly love Him more and more each day Thank you Lord for your great love for us Doing the right thing isn t always pleasant safe or immediately rewarding We need to work hard and have courage we may be ridiculed and rejected our progress may sometimes be slow and painful and we may question whether we will ever see the rewards of our labor Jesus was killed for doing the right thing and He now lives in eternal glory because He never grew weary Thank God today for showing us the reward of doing what is right 27 28

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Irene in 2018 IreneIrene in 2018 in 2022 Monday of the Fourth Week in Lent Jesus journey was long painful and often lonely but it came to an end He struggled and struggled but He got back up and kept going So it should be with us Sometimes we fail we find it difficult to get along with others sometimes we are not honest with others or with ourselves we can become discouraged when we are confronted by the same problems over and over again and at times we are tempted to stop trying because it is just too hard Tuesday of the Fourth Week in Lent When you have reached this stage you should think of the cross Jesus carried Ask Him to grant you the courage to make the changes in your life that are in keeping with His example Today let us make our way through the distracting crowd climb our way out of our short sightedness or allow the kindness of others to carry us all the way and when we merely glimpse His presence say thank you Lord for your healing forgiveness Today thank Jesus for never giving up on us 29 Jesus invites us to come to Him because He is the source of forgiveness and healing Once we make the effort to reach out to Him in faith His healing touch and warm embrace restores us to grace 30

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Wednesday of the Fourth Week in Lent Thursday of the Fourth Week in Lent Thy will be done The season of Lent can sometimes discourage us especially if we have struggled with accomplishing some of our goals or Lenten sacrifices We might feel like we don t have what it takes or we will never be good enough If you sometimes feel burdened and not in the mood to pray this is a natural human experience but the important thing is that God understands these desert experiences In our daily recitation of the Lord s Prayer when we pray that God s will be done on Earth as it is in heaven we are committing ourselves to actively pursue and promote God s love for all creation This means that each day our prayer ought to inspire our actions in the way we treat others including strangers and those who may dislike us use our material goods and how we manage the environment May we use the remainder of this Lenten period to renew the strength and humility required to truly do God s will and thank Jesus for giving us the perfect example 31 Remember that prayer is more than just a mood God is not just a casual acquaintance whom we like to see occasionally As a matter of fact when we don t feel like praying it is then that we NEED Him more Today let us thank God that He is always in the mood to listen to love us and to allow us to begin again 32

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Friday of the Fourth Week in Lent Saturday of the Fourth Week in Lent When Jesus entered the Garden of Gethsemane He asked his disciples to remain awake and pray He asks us the same thing today In our busy mixed up world many things try to capture our attention and pull us away from what is most important God s love for us is so passionate that He showers mercy upon us at the slightest window of opportunity Pope Francis says the Lord precedes us he anticipates us His divine mercy which heals our wounds he anticipates our need for it God waits for us to concede him only the smallest glimmer of space Jesus asked his followers to stay awake and pray because He knew that is the only way to remain focused on Him and what He wants for us As we continue on our Lenten journey let us make time to stay awake and pray every day It is through prayer that Jesus enters our hearts and by remaining awake and aware of His presence in our lives we enter into a deeper relationship with Him who will keep us focused on what is truly important in our lives Let us give God the opening to reach into our hearts and heal our brokenness and thank Him today for His unconditional inexhaustible passion for us sinners Let us pray today for the grace to remain awake and pray and to thank the Lord for his willingness to enter the garden and begin His passion for the love of us 33 34

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Fifth Sunday of Lent Before Jesus began His passion He gave us an example by washing the feet of His Apostles We have the opportunity to join the Apostles and sit humbly before Christ as He serves us in His own humility by washing our feet We should then stand in response clean and renewed ready to return the aid to anyone in need that we may come across on our journeys It is now that we are also given the choice to either selfishly condemn Jesus like Judas cowardly deny our relationship with Him like Peter or faithfully follow alongside Him like John and Mary as He journeys toward the Cross His death and our salvation Which path will you choose and how will your actions reflect that choice Today give thanks to God the Father for the gift of His Son and the example He gives us of perfect faith love and service 35 Monday of the Fifth Week in Lent Troubles challenges frustrations failures All of these things come to us at some point in our lives During the season of Lent it can be easy to focus on the hard things and forget that Christ has conquered sin and death for us The Holy Spirit has been given to us so that we might become true followers of Christ and make a difference in the world We are called forth by the fire of the Spirit to be God s presence in a world that needs what only God can give May we never be afraid to follow the Spirit s lead to be a shining light in even the darkest places of our world Through love and service to others may we spread the life of the Spirit to everyone we meet As we near the end of our Lenten journey let us pray for a renewal of the Holy Spirit s action in our lives so that we might experience His great love for us as never before 36

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Tuesday of the Fifth Week in Lent Our Lord tells us If anyone would come after me let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me Matthew 16 24 We are called to accompany Jesus in his journey toward Calvary We are also called to walk with Our Lord through each day of our lives and help bring his good news of love and hope to everyone we encounter As we reflect on Our Lord s call to follow in his footsteps we should reflect on what that really means Our Lenten efforts of prayer fasting and alms giving are ways we are able to accept Christ s invitation to follow in his footsteps Let us pray that we find even more ways to accept Christ s invitation Today thank Jesus for His invitation to follow in His footsteps and pray for the grace to always accept that invitation 37 Wednesday of the Fifth Week in Lent On the eve of His death Jesus invited us to partake in the banquet of His body and blood as nourishment for our journey through this life and as a means of inheriting eternal life Today let us celebrate a new beginning a renewed way of life and a fresh outlook on our Christian relationships and responsibilities As present day Disciples of Christ we humbly accept His invitation and heed His example by loving our neighbor through selfless service and genuine respect Thank God today for His inexhaustible love and mercy wrought through the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ 38

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Thursday of the Fifth Week in Lent Friday of the Fifth Week in Lent Jesus said I know where I came from and where I am going John 8 14 As Jesus was forced to carry His cross he accepted it with dignity and joy and thought of us He knew that his cross was the means of our salvation and He desired to show just how much He loves each one of us As He fell beneath the weight of the cross He bore the burden of our sins because He knew it was a burden too heavy for us to bear In these final days of Lent we focus on Christ s journey to Jerusalem where He was celebrated as a king yet a King crucified There is however tremendous power in knowing that our destination is with God for He is the Alpha and the Omega the beginning and the end God created us out of love and desires us through mercy to return to him Therefore every situation we encounter along life s journey can be an opportunity to lead us in faith hope and love to our final destination God Thank God today for the Passion of Christ which gives us the confidence of knowing that we can end exactly where we began 39 The love of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ was greater than all of the sufferings He endured and it is greater that we can ever imagine or desire Today as we look forward to Holy Week let us take time to tell the Lord how much we love Him and thank Him again for His great love for us Thank you Jesus for loving us so much 40

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Saturday of the Fifth Week in Lent One of the central figures in the passion of Our Lord is Peter Peter denied knowing Christ when Christ was looking for just one person to stand with Him Peter denied Christ three times but was forgiven later by Our Lord Today list the names of those who have hurt you and pray for them in order to forgive them even if you cannot or will never see them again This will help us to cleanse ourselves in order to receive the graces of Christ during Holy Week Thank you Lord for the gift of your forgiveness May we learn never to betray the love of others Palm Sunday of Our Lord s Passion Palm Sunday tells us that it is the cross that is the true tree of life Pope Benedict XVI Holy Week starts with the triumphal procession of Jesus into Jerusalem Hosanna in the highest Today Palm Sunday He enters the city with the knowledge of what is to come His painful journey to Calvary his crucifixion and death and ultimately the miracle of His resurrection with the offer of redemption to all of humanity through these events Our Lenten practices of prayer fasting and charity over the past five weeks have prepared us to follow Jesus on this journey A journey where He does not allow the glory of Palm Sunday to distract Him but rather He humbles Himself thinks of us and invites us to follow Him on his path to Calvary If any want to become my followers let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me Matthew 16 24 In this final week before Easter let us reflect on the profound gift given to us by God the sacrifice of His Son and let us pray for the grace to follow the path of Jesus It is only through the cross of Jesus that we are redeemed from sin and can hope to be in God s presence for all eternity 41 42

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Monday of Holy Week Tuesday of Holy Week In spite of our weaknesses Jesus final prayer was about us His final pain was for us His final passion was for us After Jesus was arrested He was brought before the high priest and was denied and deserted by his disciples As this happened Jesus thought of us He was silent in response to the lies and false accusations that were brought against Him so that we might be freed from our lies and all of the times we have denied or offended Him Before He went to the cross Jesus went to the garden and when He spoke to His Father we were in His prayers On the eve of the cross Jesus made His decision He would rather suffer and die on earth for us than go to heaven without us Instead of looking for happiness during this Holy Week let us bring happiness to others as we thank Our Lord for giving us His full attention 43 Today let us remember Jesus silence in the face of his accusers May we find some silence in our lives today to reflect on how His silence led to our salvation Thank you Lord Jesus for your silence May we meet you in the silence of our hearts but never be afraid to speak out boldly in praise thanksgiving and service for You 44

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Wednesday of Holy Week Holy Thursday When Jesus was arrested in the garden he told the soldiers to let his followers go I told you I AM if you are looking for me then let these men go We are the ones He allowed to escape that night with his disciples We are the ones for whom He allowed himself to be arrested and enter into his passion We are the ones He came to save And we are the ones He freed by being arrested tried and crucified as our Savior In His passion Jesus reveals the God of mercy Pope Francis Today let us thank Jesus for his great love for us As He was arrested and entered into his passion He thought of us He was willing to sacrifice His freedom so that we might be set free from the power of sin and death forever That is how much He loves each one of us Thank you Lord for your great love Help us to love others as you love us 45 Today we commemorate the final Passover meal where Jesus first gives us Himself in the form of the Holy Eucharist He washes the feet of his disciples providing us with the perfect example of humility Even as Jesus approaches his Passion He never ceases to think of us and teaches us the life of service that He wants us to lead Each week during the consecration of the gifts we hear the echo of His words Do this in memory of me This command is not only that we come together as a faith community to celebrate the Eucharist it represents a broader call to follow the example of Jesus sacrifice and service Today let us contemplate this message in a special way by asking ourselves how we can do more to serve our brothers and sisters and reveal the God of mercy to those around us Then let us all pray that we will be led to greater service following the example of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ 46

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Good Friday After Jesus was falsely accused He was beaten scourged crowned with thorns and spit upon During all of these sufferings He thought of us He accepted this torture and ridicule because He knew that we are unable to satisfy the consequences of our many sins but He still desired that each of us be saved and united to Him Our Savior submitted to the powers of earthly rulers so that we might receive the opportunity to live in the light of his eternal kingdom Today let us thank the Lord for His invitation to live with him forever May we realize His love in our lives and reach out to others so that we may carry the light of His love into the world Holy Saturday Today we remember the silence that came on the day after the chaos of the passion and death of Our Lord God loves us so much that Jesus Christ suffered a humiliating passion an agonizing death and a glorious resurrection so that we may be freed from sin and share in eternal life This is the foundation of our FAITH the reason for our HOPE and the impetus of our LOVE Today we thank God for dying for us 47 48

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Easter Sunday Monday in the Octave of Easter We are the Easter People and Alleluia is our song Pope St John Paul II The Easter season is one of great joy and triumph It s also a time for abundant thanksgiving We sing God s praises loudly and we kneel before Him humbly giving thanks for Christ s sacrifice on behalf of our salvation As we celebrate this great gift let us remember that Christ tells us to go and make disciples of all nations Mt 28 19 Therefore do not keep this joy to yourself or share it only with those who already believe Jesus is risen Alleluia Our Lenten journey is over and we can joyfully proclaim that He is here The love of God has conquered sin and death and has offered us all the possibility of eternal life Let us through word and action spread the light of the risen Christ to all those we encounter today and every day This is how all will know that you are my disciples if you have love for one another John 13 35 Today joyfully share your thanks for God s generosity mercy and love with those around you in an effort to show your love for one another 49 We must live out the Easter message at every moment igniting a curiosity and desire to experience that same joy from all those we meet In this way we become a living testimony to our faithfulness and thanksgiving to God Today find ways to spread the joy of Christ to those around you in an effort to make disciples of all nations 50

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Tuesday in the Octave of Easter Wednesday in the Octave of Easter Resurrection People Jesus first words to His followers after His resurrection were Peace and Do not be afraid Today in the midst of our world s troubles we need to take these words of His to heart With our Lord there is nothing we need to worry about Even in our struggles and trials his Holy Spirit is with us to give us the courage and strength we need to endure and carry on each day The Easter season offers us an opportunity to choose light truth and goodness over darkness lies and evil Jesus is the light who dispels darkness the truth who exposes lies and the goodness who conquerors evil and His resurrection from the dead is the inspiration for our choice Today let us thank God for giving us the faith to be resurrection people 51 Today let us thank the Lord for his great love for us A love that will never fail and a love that always draws us to inner peace where we never have to be afraid 52

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Thursday in the Octave of Easter Friday in the Octave of Easter After Jesus spent time with His disciples on the road to Emmaus their hearts were aching to share the good news of His resurrection with others We are called to share the good news of our Lord with others as well because we are His disciples today As Jesus followers proclaimed his resurrection joy to the world we are also called to joyfully spread the good news that He is alive and still active among us in our lives today After Jesus rose from the dead He told his followers blessed are those who have not seen but believe He was talking about us We are the ones Jesus calls to be His disciples today All of us are called by our Lord to reach out to others in a spirit of love and service especially in difficult times like the ones we are now experiencing Today we thank our Lord for the good news of his resurrection which destroyed death and opened the gates of salvation to us May we always be disciples and carry His joyful message into our world today 53 Today let us thank God for the gift of faith Let us also pray for the grace to share that gift of faith with others by answering our Lord s call to love and service of our neighbor 54

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Saturday in the Octave of Easter What a friend we have in Jesus The two disciples on the road to Emmaus did not recognize their friend Jesus walking and talking with them because they lacked faith in the things He said and did Jesus is our faithful friend who walks and talks with us all along life s journey and if we are committed and consistent in the ordinary events of our daily lives we will recognize His presence in our midst Jesus is the only true light in the darkness of our world and the only source of nourishment to quench our doubt and fear Let us invite Jesus to stay with us by practicing our faith in all our daily works Thank God today for His merciful friendship and for the gift of faith Divine Mercy Sunday God showed the depth of His love for us through the passion death and resurrection of His only begotten Son He continues to express this love for each of us every day through the grace of His mercy and pardon of our sinful actions Let us celebrate this Easter Season and the Divine Mercy of Our Lord Jesus Christ by inserting God into the ordinary things of our daily life our work pleasure relationships chores studies etc If we can do that we will begin to discover that whatever we do becomes more holy more meaningful and more filled with love We will also gain a deeper understanding and appreciation for the Easter Event Easter is a time to renew our hope in eternal life as well as to give new meaning and purpose to this present life Our annual participation in the Easter event the passion death and resurrection of Christ enables us to press the reset button of our sinful lives Today let us rejoice and give thanks to God for restoring us to new life and simply thank God today for His generous love and mercy 55 56

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Mustard Seed Communities Mustard Seed Communities MSC an apostolate of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Kingston Jamaica is an international nonprofit organization dedicated to caring for the most vulnerable populations throughout the developing world MSC began in 1978 as a home for a handful of children with disabilities who had been abandoned on the streets of Jamaica Today MSC provides loving and lifelong care to over 600 children and adults with disabilities children affected with HIV and young mothers in crisis across Jamaica Nicaragua Dominican Republic Zimbabwe and Malawi MSC manages sustainable agriculture initiatives and provides education nutrition and skills training programs in order to improve the economic conditions within marginalized communities MSC also provides feeding programs to over 1 000 children each day 57 58

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Mustard Seed Missionaries Movement You are invited to join in our ministry to the most vulnerable members of our society as a spiritual missionary by becoming an Associate with the Mustard Seed Missionaries Movement Associates in the Mustard Seed Missionaries Movement are asked to pray regularly for the Mustard Seed Missionaries the Mustard Seed Communities our children and caregivers around the world To find out more about the Mustard Seed Missionaries Movement and how you can become a Spiritual Missionary please contact us at movement mustardseed com Acknowledgments Mustard Seed Communities acknowledges the members of the Mustard Seed Missionaries who contributed to this booklet Rev Msgr Gregory Ramkissoon M G S Rev Fr Garvin Augustine M G S Rev Deacon Patrick Roche M G S 59 60

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29 Janes Avenue Medfield MA 02052 U S A www mustardseed com

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