While God loves each and every one of us equally, there are those who are, should we say, “closest to his heart”:
- Mama Mary – We know Mothers have a very special place in the hearts of their children and Jesus was not different. The first miracle at Cana was through the intercession of Mama Mary.
- John – the disciple that Jesus loved. It was to whom Mama Mary was endorsed when Jesus was on the cross.
- Sinners – Jesus would always eat with them.
- Widows – Jesus knows how life is difficult for them. Once, he brought back to life a widow who lost her son.
- Children – In the Gospel, Jesus gave a very special place for children. “It is to such as this that the kingdom of heaven belongs.”
When we celebrate the Feast of the Sto Nino, Jesus was once upon a time a child himself. This Feast recognizes the very importance of the Children and three reflections on such:
- Children are the future of the country. Why is the Philippines still progressing despite all the problems? It is because we have a very young population – an average age of 23 years old. While there is life, there is hope.
- Children are one of the most abused sectors of society. From sexual abuse to emotional abuse, from physical abuse to psychological abuse. The street children are the result of the abuse. Further, we know that childhood wounds are the most difficult to heal because Children are the most vulnerable.
- Children are the only ones we can bring to heaven. We came into this world with nothing and we are leaving this world with nothing. However, if we form our children well, if they grow up with holy fear of the Lord, we help them to gain eternal life.
That is why in every Mass, we have three prayers:
- Thank God for the children we have. We pray that Children may bring joy to their parents. Should they hurt their parents, may the parents be able to forgive their children.
- For the children here, never forget your parents, especially in their old age and when in sickness. The Lord will bless you for your kindness.
- With all the things that are happening in the world, may we be like Children to their parents – very trusting. The Lord will never abandon His people.