Friday, April 26, 2013

Those of you who have read  No Greater Love should click on the comments link below and post your book talk information.  EVERYONE ELSE should choose one book talk to respond to. 1) Choose one of the personal application points and share your thoughts on it. 2) Write about a cause you would be willing to sacrifice for. Discuss how and why you would be willing to make a sacrifice. Your response needs to be a minimum of one paragraph. Post your response by midnight, May 5th (early Monday morning).


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  2. 1. No Greater Love isn’t a novel; it’s a collection of Mother Teresa’s teachings. The book has 11 chapters. Mother Teresa on…
    1.Prayer: Pray often and genuinely. You must be sincere and allow silence into your mind and heart. Once silence has entered your life – God will speak to you and you will hear him everywhere.
    2.Love: “Loving must be as normal as breathing.” True love will cause pain but always bring joy. Wherever there is love, there is God. “His love for us is infinite.”
    3.Giving: God is in everyone. We often choose to not see Him in the hungry and poor. Learn to share but don’t simply donate your unwanted things – give what’s actually important to you. Never receive more than you’re giving.
    4.Being Holy: You must want to be Holy. Trust that Jesus will do great things if you allow Him to. Always know He loves you, even when your heart hurts. Pray, believe, and love.
    5.Work & Service: “God will not judge you for your actions, only if you tried your best for Him.” Believe that whatever you do, you do it for Jesus.
    6.Jesus: Never let anything interfere with your relationship with Jesus. “He is everything. Know Him, Love Him, and Serve Him.” Remember, He is in everyone. He is “in the homeless, the sick, the unwanted, the beggar, and the drunkard.”
    7.Poverty & the Poor: Jesus knows poverty. He was once hungry and unclothed. “He gives me the opportunity to feed Him by feeding those who are hungry, to clothe Him by clothing those who are naked…” Help the less fortunate and you’ll be helping Jesus.
    8.Forgiveness: “When we realize that we are all sinners needing forgiveness, it will be easy for us to forgive others.” Go to confession, forgive others and yourself.
    9.Children & Family: If a woman does not want her child, “Bring the child to me. I will love that child, who is a sign of God’s love…Life is the greatest gift that God has bestowed on human beings. Life belongs to God, and we have no right to destroy it.”
    10.Suffering & Death: When you’re suffering, “take refuge in Christ’s heart.” There will be suffering in everyone’s lives. Death can be beautiful: you’d be returning to God.
    11.The Missionaries of Charity: A missionary has one mission –“a message to deliver.” Our message is the word of God – love and compassion
    2. Mother Teresa was born in 1910 in Skopje. She was an Indian Roman Catholic nun. She’s considered to be a saint because of the missionary work she has done and how she’s helped “the poorest of the poor.” Along with several others, Mother Teresa founded the Missionaries of Charity which has been helping people since the 1950’s. “Today there are over 4000 religious brothers and sisters internationally in the 107 houses founded by the Missionaries of Charity. She has received many awards including the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979 and many other Indian awards. She died in 1997 of a heart attack but is still remembered and admired.
    3. Reader Lens: I did enjoy the book. I felt it was very insightful and I could easily relate to many of the things she had written. It is true that some people don’t stop and think to help the hungry or the homeless. Some look down on these people because they themselves have never experienced this type of suffering. Mother Teresa wrote “Put your money in the service of others and you’ll be rich but he who is attached to riches will be poor.” She understands how the world works – that in the end, you’ll be happier having helped someone then being selfish and never lending a hand.

    1. 4.1.) “Seek no revenge but returning good for evil, by loving your enemies and blessing those who curse us.” You’ll be a happier person by forgiving and forgetting. 2.) “Always know He loves you, even when your heart hurts.” Always know someone cares. 3.) “Loving must be as normal as breathing.” Yes, you get hurt sometimes but always allow yourself to love and be loved.
      5. I think anyone would benefit from reading this. Even though it is centered around Jesus, it can still apply to everyone. Some of the chapters are more religious than others; however, the overall purpose is to love and be kind.
      6. Dear Mother Teresa,
      The world is very harsh and you chose to help others even if that meant depriving yourself from wonderful things. If you were alive today, I wonder if the world would be different. You’ve lived through wars and seen death first hand, even of children. Although many are not Christian, I feel you deserve an enormous thank you from everyone. You’ve showed the world gentle kindness and love to every person that you had assisted. You gave people hope, and for some, a motivation to live. You’re a very inspirational person not only in the Catholic world. I wish I had learned more about you growing up. I remember your name only getting brought up a couple times in middle school – that’s it. I feel students should learn your story, Catholic school or not. You are not just a humanitarian nun; you are an individual who made a difference.

    2. I think you did a great view of Mother Theresa. She only was religions but she shared her views. You did a great job explaining what it meant to her and how she helped others just with what she believed in.

    3. Also a good flow with words. I can visually see what you were trying to describe.

    4. I like how well you summarized mother Teresa's teachings and life while being very brief and not going too overboard with detail. Although i am not a firm believer of Christianity as she was, i do however believe in some of her teachings, like forgiveness, being giving, and being loving.

      A cause I would sacrifice would be defending my love ones such as my friends and family, and most importantly my country. I would always put myself before others in a situation like that. I'm not afraid to grab a gun, stand up, and fight for my country.

    5. I like how you described each of her teachings, I was definitely able to tell that you read the novel. I can relate to a lot of her teachings because I am a Christian. I was taught all of these teachings ever since I was able to blink, and so I keep these near and dear to my heart.

      I would sacrifice my own life if need be for someone I know, life is made my the experiences you have and I you don't have anyone to do things with what's the point of living? I also find charity and giving near to my heart. Each Christmas season my family finds another family in need of every day appliances, like washer and dryers, clothing, food, personal hygiene necessities, and we pay for those things. Knowing how much we have it feels really good to give to others that need it.

    6. You did a good job explaining what the book is about. I like how u described it more of a religious aspect compared to a novel. Im not the biggest religious person but, I can definitely see where you come from with your reflection

  3. I see this as more of being just a good person and staying positive. I'm also not much for religion. I also see it as living to be happy, fulfilled and being something in life. As for the sacrifice part, I have no idea what I'd really sacrifice for something else. I guess I'd "sacrifice" time to help a friend in need if that counts.

    Chris P.

  4. As I read mother Teresa's book No Greater Love I quickly came to the recognition that she was a very holy person. Throughout the book the saints teachings pin point various topics such as; Love, giving, holyness, work and service, the poor, forgivness, family and children, suffering and death, and charity. The book shows that through christ anything is possible and if you focus on Jesus and your religion while keeping all these factors in mind you will become closer to God and also grow stronger as an individual. * Backround info* In 1910 CatholicNun Mother Teresa was born in Skopje. Mother Teresa was recognized as a saint mostly for attaining to the poor and recognizing that they are humans too and like all Jesus lies withing them as well, she also founded the Missionaries of Charity. In 1979 she recieved The Nobel Peace Prize. Mother Tereasa will be remebered for many more years to come because she was seen as one of the most generous people. *Quotes*
    "Let us always meet each other with smile, for the smile is the beginning of love.”
    “The hunger for love is much more difficult to remove than the hunger for bread.”

    “A life not lived for others is not a life.”

    *Readers response* I enjoyed reding the book No Greater Love because it's not something I would normally read, but as I got into the book I realized you dont need to be religious to enjoy it because it simply just gives you an uplifting attitude on life and helps you view the world as a place where everyone needs love. I think Mother Teresa was a great person and she deserves the recognition of many people and honors. I think if everyone had the generous heart of her the world would be a completly different place and there wouldn't be as much judgment in todays society.

  5. 1. SUMMARY: This novel is not your average story. This book is an accumulation of Mother Teresa's life experiences and her own knowledge on many different aspects of her religion. Each chapter has a particular focus for the reader such as chapter one, which is called "On Praying". In this chapter Mother Teresa stresses the importance of understanding that you are nothing more than a servant of God. It is our duty to find time devoted to silence with the Lord. By doing this we escape the stresses of our average lives. Every chapter is similar to this but focuses on a different purpose, but all which add up to her style of living and what she believes is most important to understand when trying to live a life through God.
    2. BIOGRAPHY- Mother Teresa: Mother Teresa was born in Skopje, Macedonia and was originally named Agnes. Since a very young age she felt strongly in her religion and eventually left to join the Sisters of Loreto. They often did many of their missions in India. She was sworn in as a nun, taught at a school, then took her leave to work in the slums of Calcutta to be with and help the absolute poorest people. A few years after her move she then requested permission to start "The Missionaries of Charity" which would help to care for people no one else was prepared to. This spread very fast and to many places. She devoted her entire life to help the people that needed to be loved. She served her life doing God's will.
    3. CRITICAL LENS #1: Mother Teresa knew when she was around twelve years old that she wanted to help people. This really amazes me that she, at such a young age, was so sure of God. I still have a hard time finding my way to God and connecting on a spiritual level with him. I still don't know how to handle my beliefs and Mother Teresa was so ready and willing to put her life into His hands. This book had a lot of repetition in it to me so certain things in particular began to stand out. One was that she continued to urge that the sooner we realize that we are nothing, the better. This was something that really struck me while reading. Why would someone who loves God and people so much insist that we need to be convinced that we are nothing? I've come to the conclusion that what she was trying to express is that our material life is insignificant. What we do through God and for Him is what matters most. Another thing that stood out to me was the chapter On Suffering and Death. In her eyes death is such a happy thing, he Lord is calling you home. I feel that no matter how many times you hear that saying, you will always feel a terrible loss when someone you love dies. What I don't understand is if it such a happy moment to go on to the kingdom of God, why does it cause us so much pain and heartache. These are just a few things that made me feel emotional while reading this book.

    1- "You learn humility only by accepting humiliation".
    2- "When you come face to face with God, you cannot but know that you are nothing, that you have nothing".
    3- "... A person who is attached to riches, who lives with the worry of riches, is actually very poor. However, if such a person puts her money at the service of others, then she is rich, very rich".
    * remembering these things can help you to live a better life, and a happier life- in the eyes of God.
    5. RECOMMENDATION: I would recommend this book for someone who wants to strengthen their religious ties to God. It would really help to open someones eyes to see that we can achieve great things through small deeds. I would also recommend this book to someone not sure of their religious beliefs. I feel it would be good insight into some of the ways that you can find God if you feel lost.
    6. LETTER: Dear Mother Teresa, I wish you were still alive so I could have the honor of meeting you. I'm sure you're very happy in God's kingdom now though. Thank you for your beautiful book and the wonderful views of how to live life through God and do his will. Your words have helped to show me that I need to understand my nothingness and learn to deal with humility so I my become a humble person. After reading your book I no longer feel afraid to reach out to those of my lowest brothers and sister and offer my help to them. You are a strong woman and I am impressed with your accomplishments. Thank you again for the guidelines to help us live a holy life.

    1. I like your letter, its very in depth and shows that you reflected a lot on the book and it meant something. This book seems like its a real eye opener and can show people what their true purpose is in life. It also seems like it would clear up any confusion that a person may have with their relgious beliefs.

  7. Summary:

    For my independent novel reading I read No Greater Love by Mother Teresa. In the book there are 13 different sections (or chapters) that Mother Teresa’s life revolved around; Prayer, Love, Giving, Being Holy, Work and Service, Jesus, Poverty and Poor, Forgiveness, Children and Family, Suffering and Death, Missionaries of Charity, Mother Teresa: A Conversation, and Mother Teresa: A Biographical Sketch. In each section she explains in great detail about what each thing means to her and what she does to help others that are dealing with that same topic. At the beginning of each section there is a quote from mother Teresa and a quote from Jesus.

    Author Biography:

    On August 16, 1910 Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu was born. Later she will be known as Mother Teresa. She was born in Skopje, the capital of the Albanian republic of Macedonia. Her parents Nikolle and Drana are very devout Catholics. Agnes along with her brother and sister attend a public school, they all attend catechism classes at the parish. Agnes had special interest in reading about missionaries and the lives of saints. At the age of twelve Agnes felt her first gentle calling to the religious and missionary life, in 1928 the interest in missionary outreach is confirmed by a clear calling to the religious life. Between the years 1928 and 1989 Mother Teresa opens many Missionaries of Charity. In 1979 Mother Teresa was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. In September 1997 Mother Teresa suffered a heart attack in her home in Calcutta and passed away.

    Critical Lens:

    Reader Response Perspective
    I feel like this text is a really good text to read for people pursuing their faith, love, and giving to a deeper level. Mother Teresa did a really great job in explaining in a deeper yet easier level to understand on how to be a more faithful and love enriched person. I personally felt very obligated to be a more faithful and giving person after reading what she had to say. She had a lot of really good points in how people should worry less about how they can make themselves a richer person and should focus on helping someone who is in need and who will actually benefit in a positive way from our help and guidance.

    Three Life Applications:

    I feel like this novel could be easy used in real life. I feel like if people actually read this book and too it to the meaningful level they could really learn a lot about how to treat one another. One life applications is the section of giving, after reading the section of giving time, talent, and treasure is actually giving people your time to help them with whatever they need. Another life application is the section of work and service, after reading the section on work and service it really inspired me to actually go out and do service for others and to work for others not wanting anything in return. The last life application is the section suffering and death, after reading that section it really helped me understand how to cope with loosing someone you love, because it takes a long time to actually understand and actually come to terms with loosing someone.


    I would recommend this book for anyone who wants to expand their outlook on religion and faith. This is a very faith based book and some of it was hard to keep reading because I would find myself nodding off. I honestly wish the book was more about her life and how she became Mother Teresa and not all about how to expand your
    faith and religion.

    Creative Peace:

    Motivated to help anyone and anything
    Optimistic about how the world is and will be in the future
    Thoughtful towards everyone
    Holy. Her whole life revolved around God and her faith
    Enthusiastic about faith, love, and giving
    Respectful to anyone no matter the circumstances

    Trust-worthy, loving, kind, and caring
    Eminent by everyone that knew her.
    Responsible with her words and actions
    Exuberant about her work for missionaries and faith
    Service work was a huge part of her life
    Ambitious about helping others

    1. I'm glad that you extracted so much meaning from this book. I liked how you talked about being inspired to do services for others with nothing in return. I do a lot of volunteer work just because I like meeting all kinds of people. I can also see the connection to death because all those people who's lives you touch die eventually and you need to be able to cope with that.
      As far as sacrificing goes, I would sacrifice anything, including myself, if the people I love were in a deathly situation. I could never stand by and watch people I love suffer and not do anything. Plus, what would there be to live for if I lost all the people in my life that I care about? Considering that all my loved ones probably won't die at once, I would sacrifice my own safety for another individual.

  8. 1) No Greater Love is about Mother Teresa's perspective on religion and how people should live their lives. She shares many of her experiences and stresses on the importance of being unselfish and helping the poor. The chapters are divided into different aspects of her religion, such as prayer, forgiveness, and suffering.
    2) Mother Teresa was born Skopje, Macedonia in 1910. She felt her call to God early in life and by 1931 she was nun. She wanted to devote herself to helping the poor, such as opening up schools for children living in poverty. She started the Missionaries of Charity in order to care for the people that nobody looked after. She has received many awards for her good deeds & has had a great impact on people all over the world.
    3) Reader Response Perspective:
    I think this text could benefit all people, even if they are not religious. It contains important lessons such as living selflessly, forgiveness, and even dealing with loss. Personally I am not a religious person but I still felt that this was a good, refreshing read.
    4) One thing from this reading that I could apply to my life would be the idea that we all have human weaknesses, even the best of us, and we must learn how to use them and deal with them. Another idea I could apply to my life would be that suffering will never be absent from our lives, but if we make use of our suffering it can lead to peace. We have to reach out to other people in hard times so that we have someone reaching out to us when we are suffering. Another thing I got out of the text was the reminder that we not let failure discourage us as long as we have done our best.
    4) I would recommend this reading to people who are looking to strengthen their faith or even people who are just looking for a refreshing read that teaches lessons about humanity.
    5) Dear Mother Teresa,
    I am amazed by how you were able to devote your entire life to your faith. I hope someday that I can be as passionate about something in my life. You have made a great difference in many lives, both directly and indirectly. We need more people in the world like you who are willing to give up everything to feed and help the needy.

    1. I like the fact that you wrote a letter to Mother Teresa. I also agree that there needs to be more self-less people in the world willing to give up so much to help people. I'm glad you were able to take away a humbling idea from the book.

      As far as what I would sacrifice in the end I would probably say I would sacrifice anything to save an animal or someone I love. I am always the first person a friend calls when they have a problem with their animal or if they need help with something. They know I will come out at any hour of the day for reassurance about their animal or milk at 3am before school. I have never been able to just stand and watch an animal or person I know suffer when I know I could easily have done something.

  9. 1. SUMMARY: No Greater Love is a collection of Mother Teresa’s life teaching. She writes about her own experiences and her personal faith. Each chapter is devoted to a specific topic in which Mother Teresa describes the impact and importance of that topic in her own life and her audiences’ lives.

    2. BIOGRAPHY: Mother Teresa was born August 26, 1910 in Skopje, Macedonia. She was a Catholic nun, teacher, and missionary who dedicated her life to the service of others and God. She received the Nobel Peace Prize for her humanitarian efforts.

    3. LITERARY LENS: #1- I feel like everyone can learn a little something from Mother Teresa. She viewed the world in a way that most of us find extremely hard to comprehend. Even if you’re not the most religious person, I think you can take away the idea that material items are not the most important things in life. I am not Catholic and usually have some trouble following most Catholic practices, but, to me, this book shows the importance of faith and leading a positive, impactful life.

    4. LIFE LESSONS: There’s a lot that can be taken from Mother Teresa’s teachings. One of those lessons, for me, is the significance of having faith guide me. While my faith is connected to God I also know that some people don’t share this same faith. I think that no matter what type of faith you may have, religious or otherwise, it’s important to have faith in something. Another lesson I learned from Mother Teresa is that just because a person may be wealthy does not mean they are rich. Material things will never make a life higher in quality. No matter how hard a person works they can never truly succeed without having some type of conviction. The third lesson I learned is the importance of being genuinely kind and loving towards others. Mother Teresa shows that opening your heart to others can impact the way we view each other and the world around us.

    5. RECOMMENTION: I think, if you keep an open mind, everyone would enjoy this reading. Even if you’re not Christian or religious Mother Teresa can give insight into those you are as well as humanity as a whole.

    6. CREATIVE PIECE (poem):

    Like the wind,
    Felt but not seen,
    Alive but not living,
    In God,
    Like the wind,
    In others,
    Felt but not seen,
    In the world,
    Alive but not living,

    1. I think that's a great life lesson to learn! It's always good to have faith in something. And the idea that wealthy doesn't equal rich is another good philosophy to have.
      A cause I would be willing to sacrifice for is my religion. I love my family dearly, but God is at the head of my household and I would be willing to sacrifice anything for him (as long as it didn't involve murder!)

  10. 1.Summary:
    No Greater Love is a book about many quotes by mother Teresa and others. It explains her thoughts on love, generosity, forgiveness, prayer, service, and what it means to be a Christian. It is about her wisdom and what she did to earn the love of many people.

    2.Brief History of Author:
    Mother Teresa: Was born in Skopje, Macedonia in August 26, 1910 and died in September 5, 1997 in Kolkata. She was a catholic nun and was a humanitarian. This means she did things to help out other people. Her entire life was fully devoted to helping the poor, the sick, the needy, and the helpless.

    3.Literary Lens:
    #1 "The reader response perspective"
    I love Mother Teresa and am so impressed by her life and the love she showed to others. I was fascinated to read the biographical details of her life in this book, and less interested in the Catholic doctrines that I couldn't quite understand. But her messages of love and prayer and of seeing Jesus in the poor people on the streets were wonderful. Mother Teresa's insights on love, service, forgiveness and prayer. She exemplified Christ like love, caring for the most unloved in society. Both beautiful and inspirational. A wonderful book that offers perspective, and advice for living a faithful, joyful, and loving life.

    4.Three Positive Impacts:
    1) Be respectful: we must show respect to every human being around us, no matter what condition they are in. We must help them, giving of ourselves, because when we look at the aged, the poor, the sick, the new born we must respect and help them because through them is God and we would be respecting Him.
    2)Keep Smiling and Loving: Mother Teresa’s most enduring qualities were her ability to keep smiling and loving, even when faced with hard challenges. Somehow things will just work out for you when you choose to keep smiling and loving.
    3) Don’t Wait for Anyone Else, Show Kindness Yourself: Instead of waiting for leaders become a leader. Make a difference yourself. We can all wait for someone else to lead the way, but if we do that, chances are no one will want to step up to become the leader. Mother Teresa’s philosophy was to do it alone, to show it to each person.

    I would recommend this book to people who are in a way looking to find help on what to do or have a purpose. It teaches you many things and it’s truly inspirational. I would not recommend it if you are truly all out against religion since it is basically talking about religion throughout the entire book. Even so if you are not too against It is a great read and it’s fast and easy.
    6.Creative Piece:
    Poetic Description with Quotes by Mother Teresa
    S- “Spread love everywhere you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.”
    M- “Many people mistake our work for our vocation. Our vocation is the love of Jesus.”
    I-“I have found the paradox, that if you love until it hurts, there can be no more hurt, only more love.”
    L- “Loneliness and the feeling of being unwanted is the most terrible poverty.”
    E- “Even the rich are hungry for love, for being cared for, for being wanted, for having someone to call their own.”

    1. Being respectful is assumed to be one of the easiest things to do, but it is also one of the hardest. Our society is growing and I think that there is less respect today than there was back in the day. Respect was one of the most important aspects in life to my grandparents. Back then they were always taught to respect the aged, the sick, and the poor, but today I feel like most of the population is self centered and conceited and we only care about ourselves anymore and do not have respect for other people. I would definitely sacrifice a lot for the ones that I love. My family and friends mean the world to me and I do not know of anything that I would not do for them. They are what make me, me. I will always put myself before the ones that I love the most.

  11. Taylor Welter

    To keep smiling and loving may be very hard to do under certain circumstances but it is the smartest choice when dealing with challenges. I agree that eventually, things will always work out in the end. However, you must not expect too much for the end otherwise you may get your hopes up. I do realize that I need to learn from this; maybe my perspective of life would be greater.
    I would sacrifice a lot for the ones I love. I would sacrifice in many ways, may it be little or vast things. I would even sacrifice my life, if it meant saving my loved ones.

  12. I think everyone did a great job. The personal connection I can make is with learning about mother Teresa. I've gone to a catholic school until 5th grade. We would always talk about service work that she has done and how she made a big impact on a lot of people.
    One thing I would make any kind of sacrifice for would be my family. With the way I was raised and how close my family is, we would do anything for each other. It doesn't matter how much we fight my family is very close and we would all sacrifice something for one another!

  13. I think everyone connected to this book in the same ways. Mother Teresa's message was to give charity and do something for the good of others. Everyone's personal connection seemed to be along those points. Personally, I connect with this because I grew up a Catholic and heard about the greatness of Mother Teresa's good deeds. I think I would sacrifice almost anything if it meant my family would be safe. There is much truth to the fact that friends come and go but family lasts forever. I would easily sacrifice anything for my family. It wouldn't matter how or what the damage is afterwards, I would be helping the people that have loved me unconditionally for my whole life. I think everyone could benefit from Mother Teresa's example. She makes people strive to be a better version of themselves.

  14. Everyone did a really good job. Mother Teresa was a women that people would consider a saint and she is a role model for a lot of people. I can connect with it because I went to a Catholic elementary school and I was taught that helping others and giving back to people was always the right thing to do. We learned about Mother Teresa and she showed us that she would sacrifice herself and was willing to helo others. If I had to secrifice myself for something, it would definitely be for my family. They have done so much for me, especially my parents. So I would be able to secrifice anything I had to keep them safe and protect them. Even if I had to sacrifice my life for my family, I would do it. Mother Teresa taught everyone to be the best person that they could be and that they should give back to people, not just people that are nice to them, but to everyone.


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