Let the children come to me
Around the time they reach the age of three, children tend to become prone to separation anxiety. When Mom and Dad go out, the kids are left in the hands of a babysitter. But the younger children are not old enough to realize that Mom and Dad will be back in just a few hours. They think their parents will never come back. So they grow anxious and cry, sometimes uncontrollably. Then, they are greatly relieved when Mom and Dad come home.
Imagine how Jesus’ heart breaks over the millions of children whose fears of being abandoned are actually justified—the ones whose parents have been taken away from them because of war, famine, ethnic cleansing, and human trafficking. Many more children go for days without food, others struggle with addictions. Some have been forced to join militias, and still others become slaves in oppressive sweatshops and dank, dark mines.
These are the children that Jesus especially wants to draw to his side. These vulnerable, innocent, and hurting little ones are the ones he asks us to reach out and help.
What we can do
First, we can spend a little time each day praying for all of the children who are suffering and alone. Let us remember that all it would take is a slight change of history, and we could be in these children’s shoes.
Second, let us look at our own surroundings. Is there something we can do to help children in our local area? Is there a Big Brothers or Big Sisters branch that needs our help? Or perhaps an arm of our local St. Vincent de Paul Society?
Third, we can sacrifice and try to put aside a few dollars each month to donate to an organization that specifically helps children. A number of local and national Catholic organizations have set up centers in poor countries. Surely they can use our help to fulfill their mission.
Be especially close to the most vulnerable
Children are a beautiful gift from God. That is why Jesus asks us to do what we can to help them come to him. Can we reach out and share his love with these, the least of our brothers and sisters?
-word among us