Today’s Gospel reading is from Luke 13, which asks: “What is the kingdom of God like? What shall I compare it with?”
Christ responded by saying: “It is like a mustard seed which a man took and threw into his garden: it grew and became a tree, and the birds of the air sheltered in its branches.”
Today’s daily reading of the Mass prompted me to reflect on how God works through the seemingly insignificant. In Scripture and throughout history the Lord has displayed his power through the ordinary—starting with a small seed and growing it into something far greater than we could ever ask, imagine or accomplish on our own.
And working at Cross Catholic Outreach, I see evidence of this every single day. Our Catholic mission partners around the world began their ministries with humble hearts and the call to serve, and ever since God has worked through them in a way that is now blessing thousands of the world’s poorest of the poor.
For example, in Nicaragua, missionary John Bland saw the rampant malnutrition and disease among impoverished families living in rural communities. In response he left his job, stepped out in faith, threw the proverbial mustard seed, and has since seen God grow his ministry into an outreach that has given thousands of poor people safe, clean water.
Similarly, in Haiti, Father Marc Boisvert began an outreach to a handful of street children. Today his ministry, Pwoje Espwa, has grown into a vital lifeline, providing food, education and shelter to hundreds of orphaned and abandoned children.
Cross Catholic is proud to come alongside these ministries—and many, many more—to offer physical and spiritual support to those they serve. It is incredible to see God working through ordinary men and women to bless the poor. With our partners in mind, I think I’m beginning to understand Christ’s answer. Indeed, the kingdom of God is like a mustard seed, which grew and became a tree that offered shelter to those in need.