Like little children
October 1, 2018
26th Week in
Thérèse of the
1st Reading: Jb 1:6–22
Gospel: Luke 9:46-50
One day the disciples were arguing about which of them was the most important. But Jesus knew their thoughts, so he took a little child and stood him by his side. Then he said to them, “Whoever welcomes this little child in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me, welcomes the one who sent me. And listen: the one who is found to be the least among you all, is the one who is the greatest.” Then John spoke up, “Master, we saw someone who drove out demons by calling upon your name, and we tried to forbid him because he doesn’t follow you with us.” But Jesus said, “Don’t forbid him. He who is not against you is for you.”
(Daily Gospel in the Assimilated Life Experience)
Whenever the Gospel talks about children I recall my experience the first time I went abroad in 2005. That year I already noticed a graying population and the fast decline of the number of children in public places in Europe. At France I was delighted one day by the sight of a lady pushing a baby stroller. I talked to her briefly with my broken French and she was happy at the interest I showed over her baby. But when she uncovered the stroller it was not a baby, sitting in there, but a dog. Dogs, not babies, are enjoying today the love of a human mother in most families.
Keeping a small family had long become a mentality in Europe. No amount of incentives from government will take Europe back to the times when parents consi-dered children as blessings. Children not only stand as testimony to the truth that God is not yet tired of humanity. Children also remind us of virtues that vanish with age, such as humility, simplicity and dependence. The scarcity of children deprives society of many powerful reminders, especially of the fact that heaven belongs to the childlike.
We have lots of children in our country. Still, we have more corrupt leaders than Europe has. It looks like the large number of children in the country is not enough to prick the consciences of our leaders who do not practice childlike virtues. Either they are just playing blind to the lessons of childlikeness or they have become so corrupt and brazen that no symbo-lism is strong enough to sensitize their consciences.
Children remind us of humility lost, innocence gi-ven away and heavenly inheritance squandered. The promise that these children represent reminds us that recovery is not too late. In fact in today’s Gospel Jesus showed his disciples that they can be children once more if they strive to be the servant of all. – (Atty.) Rev. Fr. Dan Domingo P. delos Angeles, Jr., DM . Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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