Few years ago, my older sister asked me to accompany her eldest daughter to her first day of school. On our way there, I noticed a group of children playing outside their room. They appeared to be having a great time. I could sense their eagerness to learn and make new acquaintances. As the class progressed, I sat at the back of the room to assure my niece that I would not leave her. I was struck by how eagerly the students responded to the teacher’s instruction. They were so pure, and their desire to learn was palpable.
In today’s Gospel, Jesus allows the children to come to Him despite the disciples’ protest. His words imply that He values children and wishes for each of them to inherit the kingdom of heaven. Jesus reiterates that we should model our faith after that of a child, for children are naturally faith-filled. This means that they trust totally. God invites us to reconnect with our natural faith—wholeheartedly believing in His words.
As a priest-in-process, the Gospel encourages me to live out the purity and openness of a child. It pushes me to be more attentive to the wisdom God is imparting through this formation. I know that there will be obstacles along the process, but I am also aware that He will be there with me every step of the way. The childlike confidence and trust in me will help in grasping God’s purpose better. Furthermore, as a future Shepherd, Jesus wanted me to become more compassionate and welcoming because He Himself lays His hands on each of us. Our faith, as a child, must be nourished through the love and word of God.
By: Sem. Peter John D. Arao
People were bringing children to Jesus that he might touch them,
but the disciples rebuked them.
When Jesus saw this he became indignant and said to them,
“Let the children come to me; do not prevent them,
for the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these.
Amen, I say to you,
whoever does not accept the Kingdom of God like a child
will not enter it.”
Then he embraced the children and blessed them,
placing his hands on them.