Living from the Heart

This month, as we continue mining the gold from Sue and Leo Kane’s Little Brown Book Too,  we are invited to ponder a simple story about Mary MacKillop which provides yet another example of how she lived from the heart.

There were no limits to her love… how do I measure up?

Mary had managed only a very early cup of tea for breakfast before she arrived at the convent in the afternoon. The Sisters had prepared a meal for her. Sister Borgia Healy tells the story:

Just as she was about to sit to the table, a knock came to the door.  I went to see who was there and a poor, half-starved, baby clothed old man stood before me. “Would you give me something to eat, miss?”  he said.  “I can get no work in  this town, not anything to eat. I’m very weak.”

Mother Mary followed me to the door, and when she saw the man, she said:

Sister dear, give to the poor creature what you have prepared for me. It will do me more good to give him a dinner, poor old man—perhaps some father that the world has been hard with. Mary MacKillop

For Mary, that hungry old man was Jesus coming to her door. She often told her Sisters:

Never see a need without doing something about it. Mary MacKillop

Her compassion sprang from her spirit of love and self-forgetfulness.

It knew no boundaries!

I was hungry and you gave me food…               Jesus: in Matthew 25:35

The above is an extract from The Little Brown Book Too (pages 32-33)

© Sue and Leo Kane 2011

Used with the kind permission of the publishers, St Paul’s Publications

Available online and from some Mary MacKillop Centres.


Download the print version of this reflection (PDF)

Image of Mary, Sister and poor family: Artist unknown