The Parable of the Mustard Seed

Fr. João S. Clá Dias
“The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his field. It is the smallest of all the seeds, yet when full-grown it is the largest of plants. It becomes a large bush, and the birds of the sky come and dwell in its branches.”
– Matthew 13:31–32
Those hearing this parable know of the botanic construction of mustard, characterized by its minuscule seed that, once planted, gives birth to a lush bush, always green.
God might have created the mustard seed solely to serve as the object of this beautiful parable of our Savior. Extremely small in its beginning, astonishing in its development, this plant is a good example to illustrate the origin and strength of Catholic apostolate, and even of the Kingdom of Heaven. Who, present when Jesus, just before ascending to heaven, gave instructions to the small group of disciples, couldn’t imagine that, in the future, millions of Catholics would populate the world.
In the teaching of this parable, growth is an essential element. The Kingdom of God and apostolate are almost imperceptible in their beginning, but as time goes on their expansion is incalculable, above all by the disproportion between the scarcity of the means and the greatness of the effects.
When a baby is brought to the baptismal font and is touched by the waters of grace, God sanctifies him. Years later some of these tender and delicate infants will become giants in the Faith, everyone knows of a St. John Bosco, or a St. Teresa of the Child Jesus for example. Colossal trees, born from such a simple ceremony…
This parable motivates us to believe in the strength of the expansion and the penetration of the Church, it teaches us, at the same time, the true sense of the Kingdom of Heaven and the triumph of the good ones, who will be shining at the Final Judgment.

One Response

  1. David Bonyun

    Very beautiful reflection. Fr. Joao always has a way of putting things that the subject is accessible by all…

    13 de September de 2008 at 17:56

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