11th August – St Clare

Today I observe a day of recollection which is part of my SOLT way of life. Nothing too dramatic. I keep away from the media and human contacts as much as I reasonably can. Freeing up my mind from the affairs of ordinary living, I reflect on things of the spirit, where I am at presently and give time to extra prayer.

One input into my day’s reflection is the gospel from Mass. There is lots of food for thought in this!

GOSPEL:                              Matthew 18:1-5. 10. 12-14
See that you never despise any of these little ones.

The disciples came to Jesus and said, ‘Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?’ So he called a little child to him and set the child in front of them. Then he said,

Jesus & Child‘I tell you solemnly, unless you change and become like little children you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. And so, the one who makes himself as little as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.

‘Anyone who welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me.

‘See that you never despise any of these little ones, for I tell you that their angels in heaven are continually in the presence of my Father in heaven.

‘Tell me. Suppose a man has a hundred sheep and one of them strays; will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hillside and go in search of the stray? I tell you solemnly, if he finds it, it gives him more joy than do the ninety-nine that did not stray at all. Similarly, it is never the will of your Father in heaven that one of these little ones should be lost.

The commentary from http://www.jesuit.org.sg is below.First it is worth considering that all of what Jesus says about God’s love for little children applies to all the human lives consumed by the IVF industry. Recent figures from the UK revealed that over 2 million human lives in the embryonic stage of development were destroyed to date. We have every reason to believe from the above gospel that each of these lives were equally precious to God as the lives of born people and that each of them had been allocated a guardian angel.

  • In today’s Gospel, Jesus urges us to care and love a child with deep sensitivity and compassion.  A child is innocent, vulnerable and close to God’s heart.  As adults we can either nurture the child to become wholesome and holy or we can destroy its future through non Christ-like living.  Are we conscious of these responsibilities?
  •  Jesus reminds us that childlike attitudes of receptivity and trust will bring us into God’s Kingdom as our hearts will be open to the truth and the Spirit of God. Do I have a “childlike” heart and life?