My pastoral assignment in the seminary has me at the Italian Home for Children. It used to be an orphanage, and now it’s a place for kids who are high-risk and can’t be at a home yet. The kids that are there come from different backgrounds and they all live together under one roof. But if there’s one thing that they all have in common, it’s this: they all want to go home.
There’s a little chapel in the home, and there we have a little Bible study once a week in the evening, a little before the kids go to bed. One week near the beginning of November, the woman who was teaching the Bible study asked the little kids a question: “Later in this month, there is a really big holiday. What’s the name of the holiday?” The kids didn’t respond. I waited a little bit. Still, no one was responding. So, I leaned over to the little one next to me and in my Irish whisper said, “It begins with a ‘T’!”
He still couldn’t get it, but apparently a few rows back, another little one heard me, and now the light bulb lit up, and I could see in the back corner of my view a little hand shoot into the air. The teacher saw it too. “What is it?” she asked. Everyone was waiting for the answer, the tension had peaked, and so with the proudest voice he could muster, Antonio shouted out the answer to take us home:
In this life, the Lord asks us to become like children, children hoping to go home. The one thing that we will all have in common, every single one of us, is that we want to go home. We all have a drudgery part of our life that can really get us to want to go home. But we can’t look ahead at this date or that event. Every day is its own, we live one day at a time. At the end of every day, we always have one, and only one, big holiday to look forward to.
The holiday for God’s children.
“Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Let the day’s own trouble be sufficient for the day.” (Mt 6:34)
2 thoughts on “Our Holiday”
Bless you in your work with these children, Jerome, as you bring the love of Jesus and Mary to each of them. I read an earlier post you did about the Italian Home for Children, and loved the picture you posted of the beautiful tabernacle.
Thanks Gabrielle, it’s a special place, and great to be with the kids… it’s been a long time, I’ll have to stop by your blog…