The St. Patrick’s Friends of Dismas group met last night for our annual evening of thanksgiving. We were joined by TJ and Tyrone who are members of the Dismas Fellowship. They came to thank the parishioners of St. pat’s for thier generosity and kindness.
I found the following story on a Kerry Robinson’s blog Love in Ordinary Time. Drop by Kerry’s site for a visit and for more stories like the one below which takes place at a food dispensing center in the midst of great poverty and hunger.
One member of every family in the impoverished village would line up with a single bucket patiently waiting their turn to have the religious sisters fill their bucket with dry grains of rice. A novice was shadowing Mother Teresa as she methodically greeted each person and filled each bucket. Before long, an elderly woman reached the front of the line and to the novice’s surprise, had in her possession two buckets. Mother Teresa greeted her by name and proceeded to fill one bucket. After thanking Mother Teresa, the woman turned to leave, stopping a short distance later to empty half of her full bucket into the second empty bucket. The novice, miserable to be witness to the extent of the hunger and inequity, turned to Mother Teresa and asked, “Why did we not fill up both buckets for that poor elderly woman?”
Mother Teresa replied, “There is only enough rice for each family to receive one bucket each day. She has her neighbors’ bucket and her own. Her neighbors are very ill, and no one from the family could come to collect the rice. She is emptying half of her family’s share into her neighbor’s bucket to bring to them because she cannot carry more.”
Overwhelmed with sorrow, the novice demanded, “Surely we should fill both buckets and take the second bucket to the sick family for her.”
Mother Teresa stopped what she was doing, looked at the novice and said, “These are among the poorest and most destitute people you will ever meet. Never take away the right of another person to be generous.”
For those who walk with those on the margins it is important for us to remember that we are called to do so by offering, where possible, the gift of friendship to the other. For a true friendship to develop there needs to be room for each of the friends to share with the other according to their abilities. We must not tale away the right of the other to say thank you.