O God, since you are Jesus who suffers, deign to be for me also a Jesus who is patient ...
As one pilgrim to Calcutta experienced last year at the time of Mother Teresa’s canonization, “poorest of the poor” isn’t some catchy little slogan.
Whether in Calcutta or in our own homes, it can be difficult to care for those who need us — even Mother Teresa found it so, at least at times.
In her book of Thoughts, Stories, and Prayers, she offers us this prayer for when it is costly to put our love into action:
O Jesus, you who suffer,grant that today and every day I may be able to see you in the person of your sick ones and that, by offering them my care, I may serve you. Grant that, even if you are hidden under the unattractive disguise of anger, of crime, or of madness, I may recognize you and say, “Jesus, you who suffer, how sweet it is to serve you.”Give me, Lord, this vision of faith, and my work will never be monotonous.I will find joy in harboring the small whims and desires of all the poor who suffer.Dear sick one, you are still more beloved to me because you represent Christ.What a privilege I am granted in being able to take care of you!O God, since you are Jesus who suffers, deign to be for me also a Jesus who is patient, who is indulgent with my faults, who looks only at my intentions, which are to love you and to serve you in the person of each of these children of yours who suffer.Lord, increase my faith.Bless my efforts and my work,now and forever.