“It is like a mustard seed that, when it is sown in the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on the earth.  But once it is sown, it springs up and becomes the largest of plants.” Mark 4:31-32

Think of today’s parable as a pause button.  The story of the mustard seed gives us the needed room to exhale and remember that despite the headlines, the personal setbacks, and the wonderings why, God is still at work transforming us and our world.  We are never alone.

How do we know?  Mark’s Gospel explains it with the story of the mustard seed.  From this tiny expression of new life, a plant grows into a sturdy tree and eventually its branches and leaves become shelter for the birds of the air—and for us as well.

Jesus likens the mustard seed to the Kingdom of God… plant seeds with acts of compassion and kindness and the Kingdom grows.  The life of our Church becomes stronger with each planting, and this is confirmation to the world that we rejoice in our faith.

So instead of getting frustrated by how seemingly great the task of everyday living is, let’s take a moment to remember that each thing we do with the conviction of faith—no matter how big or small—is another mustard seed.  Some of us are called to lives of great sacrifice for family and friends.  Some of us are called to public service or religious life.  But all of us are called to ordinary acts of kindness and compassion. These are the plantings we can sow each and every day.

Friendl, we never know how someone will receive a smile, a morning phone call to check-in, or a quick note to say “I’m thinking of you.”  These are the mustard seeds that cost nothing but have the potential to change the world. Knowing that, let’s disengage our pause button and reengage with the world.  And know in your heart that God’s Kingdom on earth is yours to nurture and grow.

Sincerely yours in Christ,

Father Raymond J. Finch, M.M.


Prayer for 2nd Sunday

Praise to You, Lord God, for tiny miracles

and small graces with which You bless

the world and all who dwell in it:

gentle rain, a songbird’s melody,

a child’s laughter and the quiet

wisdom of age.

Help me sow small acts of kindness

throughout the day on all I meet.

A smile, a prayer, a friendly greeting,

given in Your name, plant seeds of love,

mercy and justice that grow and blossom

into a heavenly harvest of Your kingdom.

Amid life’s storms may Your word be our guide

and Your gospel our light even when darkness comes.

May the simplest prayer pierce the clouds of doubt

and cause Your blessings to fall abundantly on us

who struggle to help establish Your reign here on earth.


Prayer by Maryknoll Missioner, Father Joseph Veneroso


We are a Catholic Society of priests and brothers based in the United States. We are dedicated to missionary work overseas in over 20 countries. Additionally, we animate Catholics in the United States to follow their own baptismal call to share God’s compassion and love with the poor, the sick, and all those in need.


L-R Tom O'Brien, Ray Finch, Joe Everson, Russ Feldmeier

(Fr. Lance P. Nadeau, Fr. James M. Lynch, Fr. Timothy O. Kilkelly, Fr. Juan Montes Zúñiga)

The Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers is overseen by our General Council, led by Superior General Rev. Lance P. Nadeau, M.M.


L-R Tom O'Brien, Ray Finch, Joe Everson, Russ Feldmeier

(Our Co-Founders Father Price and Father Walsh)





(Africa) Education and Formation of African Clergy

The Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers Africa Region will provide tuition assistance to African clergy, male and female religious at institutes of higher education or specialized training. Read More

Stories of Our Global Mission

The calling of a lifetime

The life of a Maryknoll missioner is challenging, fulfilling, and deeply rewarding. Follow your baptismal call to mission by sharing God’s compassion with the poor, the sick, and people most in need.

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