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The Faith Of A Little Boy

Is our faith like that of little Marcelino? Does Jesus come alive in our
minds and hearts?
Photo by Andreas Praefcke via Wikipedia

Once upon a time, a deeply agitated person left a newborn boy at the doorsteps of a monastery. The mother had died in giving birth to the child.  After much discussion, the monks voted to raise the child in the all-male atmosphere of the monastery and to give him the name, Marcelino.

In the next few years, Marcelino had the run of the monastery and the complete love of all the monks. However, Father Abbot warned the little boy, “Do not go up these stairs to that room!” One day, overcome by curiosity, the five year old boy ventured up the stairs, opened the door and found himself in a musty, little used storeroom.

At the back of the dark room, he came upon a man with his hands nailed to a cross. Marcelino didn’t know it as a crucifix.  To him, the man appeared as a living human being, like one of the monks.  With quick sympathy of a gentle little boy, he asked the figure on the cross, “Are you hungry?  Are you thirsty?”

Strangely enough a voice came from the cross, “Yes, I am.” Then began a daily routine for Marcelino.  When the monks were praying in chapel, he stole into the refectory and took bread and wine for his new found friend in the storeroom.  A nail-pierced hand would reach down and take the offerings of the child.

After some weeks, during which their friendship grew for each other, the man on the cross spoke to Marcelino. “Is there anything I can do for you?”  “Yes”, the boy responded, “I want to see my mother.”  The next day, Marcelino’s friend was sitting in a chair as he came in with his bread and wine.  With the familiarity of friendship, he climbed up on the lap of the man into his arms.

Then, the child fell asleep, apparently in the final sleep of death. Marcelino’s friend was going to give him his wish to be with his mother in Heaven.  In his adventure, Marcelino saw not a dusty, unused crucifix, but rather a real person in Christ.  In the lonely storeroom, the boy treated the figure on the cross as a suffering man in need of love and help.

The above story, is taken from a book written by Jose Maria Sanchez-Silva and has always stayed with me and provided me an insight into my relationship with Jesus.

The figure, on being treated as a live man, responded to the innocent faith of the child. He accepted the help and the loving friendship of Marcelino.  I too, can make Christ come alive if I only treat Him with such a faith as the boy’s.  If I enter that deserted room in my mind and see there, a living, breathing person in need of my attention, then Christ will respond generously to my faith.

Fr. George McKenna

January 6, 2018 Posted by | Bulletins | , , , , , | 2 Comments

Christmastime – A Miracle Of Love

Photo by Johann Jaritz – via Wikipedia

At Christmastime we celebrate a miracle of love. A God wishing to share in the lives of His people comes to earth as an Infant Boy.  With complete unselfishness, He leaves behind the perfect peace of Heaven to take on the many inconveniences of human nature.  With a Love beyond all human explanation, He will experience tiredness, hunger, pain and heartbreak in His days of earth.

This Christmastime, 2017, we can keep saying to ourselves . . . “I can be more kind, more gentle, more compassionate, more unselfish, more patient, more forgiving” . . . Some may protest . . . “Hold on Padre, that’s a big mouthful you are giving us!” . . . Yes, I say, but by talking to ourselves in this way we can make it all happen.

Someone said, “I have met the enemy and it’s within!”  YES, no force outside ourselves can hold us back from choosing loving ways of living.  With the help of the Holy Child, Mary and Joseph, we can reach our goals.  As I look back on my long life, I remember the tragedies in the lives of the people I lived with and other folks I met through my ministries.  I include myself among those sad cases.

We failed to reach those attainable goals, all concerned with love, meekness, humility and charity. On doing so, much happiness came into our lives.  If this is our present state of living, we still have time to reverse these failures in love by aiming for the heights, and affirming that we are determined to reach out goals.  At this Christmas a startling change could come into our lives.

Keep saying, “Yes, I can be more sympathetic, a more all-around loving child of God, more compassionate.” Years ago, a good friend of mine suffered a stroke.  For many years, he used this self-talk to push himself to take short steps, “I think I can, I think I can.”  He learned this in his first therapy session, and it helped greatly in his recovery.

As we continue through this season of advent, we can continue to prepare ourselves for the Child’s coming at Christmas, and the celebration of the Christmas Season. In a spirit of faith, we can share our feelings with Mary and Joseph, especially our hopes of becoming a more kind, gentle and sharing person.

Fr. George McKenna

December 17, 2017 Posted by | Bulletins | , , , , , | 2 Comments