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5th May 2013
My dear Co-Workers, Sick and Suffering Co-Workers, L.M.C.S and Volunteers,
May the love and joy of meeting our Risen Lord fill your hearts in this Easter Season.
Twenty years ago, on 25 March 1993, Mother wrote a letter addressed to the Sisters, Brothers and Fathers baring her soul about the very purpose and aim of our existence as Missionaries of Charity, And specifically, she wrote, "Do not exclude the Co-Workers and Lay MCs from this—this is their call as well, help them to know it." This applies equally to our volunteers who want to serve and who seek a deeper meaning for their service.
Dying on the cross, Jesus said, "I thirst." (John 19:28) You have seen these words next to the crucifix in our chapels. As John Paul II said, the natural thirst is a "sign revealing another thirst, a spiritual one." Jesus thirsts for souls. He thirsts for our faith and our love.
We quench that thirst by allowing God to love us, forgive us, heal us and accept us as we are; and also by longing for God's presence, clinging to Him, and finding our joy in Him.
And we quench God's thirst by our wholehearted and free service to the materially and spiritually poorest of the poor: giving not only food, clothes and medicine but also a cheerful smile and a kind word, doing small things with great love.
Jesus said that whatever we do to the least of His brethren we do to Him. So, Mother says, "'I thirst' and 'You did it to Me' - Remember always to connect the two, the means with the aim." Our service is putting love in action, no matter how small or humble.
May God's thirsting love find a response of love in your hearts that expresses itself in service to the most needy said rejected ones in your families, neighborhoods, schools, workplaces.
We accompanied Pope Benedict XVI with our grateful love and prayer in the days following his announcement of resigning from the papacy, trusting that God would give us another Holy Father after His own Heart, Our prayers have been answered in our new Holy Father, Pope Francis, to whom we promise our reverence and obedience. I look forward to meeting him one day soon.
Please, pray for our sisters and the poor in all the troubled areas of the world. Our sisters in Deir ez-Zor, Syria, had to evacuate with the mentally retarded young women in their care after a bomb exploded last August in the Church compound where they were living. They have since been in Damascus waiting and praying for peace to be restored in Syria.
For the first group of sisters who joined Mother, the 12th of April this year was the 60th anniversary of their first profession of vows. Please join us in congratulating and praying for Sr.-Gertrude M. C. (Motherhouse), Sr. Dorothy M.C. (New York), Sr. Clare M.C. (Bajasthan, India), Sr. Laetitia M.C. (Shishu Bhavan, Kolkata) and Sr. Francisca M.C. (New York). Our M.C. Brothers who celebrated the Golden Jubilee of their foundation on the 8th of April remembered with love and gratitude all the Co-Workers, volunteers and Lay MCs who have helped them throughout these 50 years.
The stories shared by you, our Co—Workers, Lay MCs and volunteers in the accompanying newsletter reveal what God is doing in you^ through you and with you. Thank you for being channels of God's love to a thirsting world.
Please continue to pray for me and all our sisters. You and your families are in my prayer.
Mother Teresa Center
524 West Calle Primera,
San Ysidro, CA 92173