“Thoughtfulness is the beginning of great sanctity,” observed Mother Teresa, one of the most beloved Catholic women of all time, popularly acclaimed a saint in her own lifetime. This small book of daily reflections for Lent and Holy Week celebrates the humility, charity and devotion of Saint Teresa of Calcutta, canonized on September 4, 2016, and the Missionaries of Charity—including the four sisters martyred in Yemen in March, 2016.
The penitential season of Lent is the prelude to Easter, the most resplendent season of the liturgical calendar. On Ash Wednesday, we receive the incinerated ashes of the palms that marked the start of the previous year’s Holy Week. In so doing, we are mindful of the perpetual cycle of dying and rising, darkness and light, sin and redemption. On Easter Sunday, we rejoice in the new life to which we have been raised and transformed.
With her canonization on September 4, 2016, the writings of Saint Teresa of Calcutta are especially appropriate as we ponder these eternal mysteries—and how we are to live them out in our own lives.
Our daily offerings of work and prayer, the intentional giving of ourselves, delights the One who loves us. Each sacrifice, however great or small, presents an opportunity to die to ourselves so that the love of Christ might shine more brightly in us. Our witness—like that of St. Teresa and her sisters—can be a transforming force in the world. And that change begins within.
Lent with Saint Teresa of Calcutta offers a short Scripture passage for each day, a brief meditation with a quote or story from the life of this remarkable woman, plus reflection questions and a short prayer to begin or end the day. Read alone or with a small group, this is a helpful resource for reflecting upon the mercy of God—and modeling the generous heart of this saint from Calcutta in our own lives.