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Spiritual Muscle

What is the strongest muscle in the human body?  It depends on how you define strength:   absolute, dynamic, explosive, or endurance?  Few would deny that the heart is the hardest-working muscle in the body.  It beats an average of 72 times a minute, 100,000 times a day and 2.5 billion times during a 70-year time span.  The heart beats to ensure that we have life.

Yet, how many times does our heart beat but we feel lifeless?  For we need more than our physical muscle.  We depend on our spiritual muscles to get us out of bed, into the drab minutiae of daily routine, and fulfill our duties as son/daughter, sibling, spouse, co-worker, friend, mentor, neighbor!


Although our name is Missionary Sisters of the Blessed Virgin Mary Queen, St. Therese of the Little Flower is one of our spiritual guides.  She coaches us on how to build spiritual muscle so that we “persevere in running the race that lies before us” (Heb 12:1) and “win an imperishable crown” (1 Cor 9:25).  In short, she shows us the wonder hidden in every moment, no matter how ordinary it looks.

Here is a peek into how we sisters exercise our spiritual muscles.  (Hover over the photos below-not available for mobile view).  And do not be surprised that they are “teeny-tiny” acts of love.  The secret to St. Therese is that every act counts – every word DOES build a muscle.  For it is God, ultimately, who does all the heavy lifting....if we let Him!


"Jesus does not ask for great achievements: only surrender and gratitude." 

- St. Therese

Saying a prayer before bedtime and accepting that you forgot to reply to an email. 


"Only God can see what is in the bottom of hearts; we are half blind."

- St. Therese

Choosing to smile at the driver who cut us off in traffic, giving him the benefit of the doubt. 


"Use the gifts that you have received, and pass on that love that has been given to you." 

- St. Therese

Remembering to NOT sprinkle green onions into the soup for the sister who doesn't prefer them.


Sr. Janine Vân Tran


"Remember that nothing is small in the eyes of God. Do all that you do with love." 

- St. Therese

Choosing not to hit the snooze button one more time so we can be on time for prayer.

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