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Let the Children Come to Me: A Meditation
by Sandi Belleque
The following meditation is especially suitable for use as community prayer with other catechists.
The following meditation is especially suitable for use as community prayer with other catechists. Play soft instrumental music in the background. Ask participants to close their eyes as you slowly read the meditation. Pause briefly as indicated.

Imagine that you are in Judea with Jesus and his disciples. The day is warm and a soft breeze is blowing. Jesus is tired from the great crowds and all the questions and debate. He sits down to rest on a large rock in a grassy field. Although his disciples also are tired, they remain alert to make sure no one interrupts Jesus. Jesus seems lost in thought. (Pause.)

Off in the distance, you hear the laughter of young children. You look around and see them at the bottom of the hill, running through the grass on this breezy sunny day. They have heard that Jesus is here, and so they hope to see him. (Pause.)

The children’s parents are not far behind. They, too, hope that Jesus will welcome their children and bless them. They have heard that there is something special about this man.

As the children get closer to Jesus, the disciples step forward. Their good intentions to let Jesus rest cause them to be impatient with the children. They tell the parents to take their children home because Jesus needs to rest and is not to be bothered. The smiles disappear from the children’s faces. The parents are disappointed. (Pause.)

Then Jesus looks up with a warm smile and kind eyes. (Pause.) He says: “Let the children come to me, and do not prevent them—for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”

Then one by one, Jesus welcomes each child into his embrace. He places his hands on each child and blesses each one. He clearly enjoys the children’s playfulness and innocence. (Pause.)

Watch Jesus watch the children skip off with their parents. See the love in his face. (Pause.)

Jesus then turns and looks at you. (Pause.) Hear him say: “Now go and do the same.”

(Scripture from Matthew 19:13-15)

Sandi Belleque has been the DRE at Sacred Heart-St. Louis Parish in Gervais, OR, for 12 years. She is the co-leader of Vicariate DRE group and is the winner of the NPCD Religious Education Excellence Award, 2008-2009. She has been married for 25 years and she and her husband have four children.

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