Letting Little Ones Lead

Another seminarian and I were sent to the Italian Home for Children this year as our pastoral assignment. For me, it was a great privilege to be with these children who are at rock bottoms in life, and who are very precious to God.

So, last semester we got to teach one of the bible study classes to the kids. We were looking around at all the teaching tools, and we finally settled on a felt board. Yes, a felt board, with little felt people that you can attach to a felt board, with hundreds of pieces and a whole book full of stories you can narrate while putting the story together on the felt board. We found one about the sheep and the goats, where a girl goes to a new school where there are poorer children different from her, she talks to her mother about it, and the moral is to love the least and everyone else, and be a sheep and not a goat. All in felt cut-outs!

So we’re all set, and when we begin the class, one of the girls, Britney, says, ” Can I help?” Sure. So she comes up, and starts to help out putting the felt pieces on the board with us. Then, she starts to help out with the questions for the class, and the teaching, and, well, she took the lead and we made a great team. Everyone got involved, and it was great. Led by Britney, of course!

At the end, I invited everyone who wanted to come up to the altar and say a prayer together. A bunch of the kids came up, and each one got to share what they wanted to pray for. After smiles and hugs, as the kids were leaving, I just happened to glance over at the wall, the wall where there’s hundreds of pictures of little kids. And my eyes landed on a sentence attached to the wall: And a little child will lead them. (Is 11:6)

In God’s Kingdom, it’s the little ones who lead, it’s the little ones that God does His great works of love with.

It makes all the difference when the big ones let them.

The difference between a sheep and a goat.

Happy Feast of St. Philip Neri!


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