13 August, Saturday
Readings: Ezek 18:1-10, 13, 30-32; Mt 19:13-15
“Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of heaven belongs” (Mt 19:14). Jesus tells us today to take care of children, for the kingdom is theirs. The love of Jesus for children must help us to reflect how we take care of them and what is our attitude towards them; we today often neglect them; abuse them, misuse them and refuse them in many ways. It requires a great generosity from the part of parents and also from all of us to take care of them, to accept them as they are, to teach and educate them, make them grow in the gospel values and the doctrines of the Church.
Jesus “laid his hands on them and blessed them” implies that children can receive baptism and that they are prepared early in their lives to take the advantage of Confession and especially Holy Eucharist! This is the concern and to be clearly understood not only by the mothers (or parents) but by all the faithful, priests and laity. In this, becoming like children is becoming more like Christ. Jesus says, “Whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it” (Mk 1015).Promise: Respect Children!