Moments

The child

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The story is told about a man who went to confession one year after the war ended, telling the priest that out of pity, he hid a woman in the attic of his home to protect her, but ended up having a sexual relationship with her, and that he was really sorry for this sin. The priest said he was forgiven. But before the absolution, the man said:  “Thank you, Father. Last question, Father, should I tell her that the war is over?”

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Today is the Feast of the Sto. Niño. The celebration is meant to remind us of the Holy Childhood of Jesus and of our own childhood. We once were young, innocent and pure. May the child in us never be lost in the face of so much demands and pressures from a world that expects achievements, performance and results.

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In our story above, the man who went to confession had taken the road of honesty and righteousness. That was fine. However, soon after, notice how he was veering toward the road of bargaining and compromise again. Do we not all take this road often? Yes, we often “kill” the child—who is full of goodness, sincerity and love—in us.

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Joseph and Mary went to Jerusalem to attend the Feast of the Passover according to the festival custom. Traditions and customs are important to every family. Do you still gather together, or do things together as a family, praying together, celebrating special occasions together, going to church together, having a meal together? Parents don’t stop, but pass on those precious family customs, values and traditions.

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How could Joseph and Mary lose their only child? It just shows that the parents of Jesus were not a perfect couple. They had their own set of concerns, issues and what-have-yous. It must have been a big learning moment for the holy couple to really focus on the Child from thereon. It is also a big reminder for modern-day parents to focus on the children, no matter what, no matter how, no matter when.

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On the same count, how could the 12-year-old Jesus forget and not look for his parents? Perhaps he was confident that His parents will come looking for Him. May the children grow up confident and secure in the thought that they are loved and are important. Parents, do you still look for your children? Or are your children the ones looking for you?

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What if it was Jesus who left with the caravan, and Joseph and Mary were the ones left behind in Jerusalem? That would be quite an interesting story! Would Jesus have come back searching for them? Would He have found His parents in the temple? Would He have been lost in the desert? Questions. Possibilities. Questions.

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Speaking of interesting stories,  Fr. Rudy Horst, SVD, came up with an interesting book titled “Animals in the Bible,” which details all the animals that are mentioned in the Old Testament and the New Testament. Father Rudy also has written “The March of the Unknown,” enumerating the unknown characters in the Bible, and making them come to life. Another interesting book Father Rudy has written is “14  Interviews with St. Paul.” At the moment, Father Rudy is working on his next book “An Interview with Jesus,” which promises to be very interesting and even controversial. His books are available at the Christ the King Seminary Store (7225684). With his works, Father Rudy is a living reminder that we are never too old to be creative, spontaneous and free.

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Speaking of children, our family welcomed Olivia del Rosario Soriano last Jan. 17, 2013, the first child of Maye and James. She was born in Medical City, the very same place where Maye’s father died some nine months ago. Yes, life goes on, and life is and can be beautiful.

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It is said that “a human body can bear only up to 45 del (unit) of pain, but at the time of giving birth, a woman feels up to 57 del.  This is similar to 20 bones getting fractured at a time!”

On this Feast of the Sto. Niño, let us honor and remember mothers, daughters, sisters, nieces, women all!

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Let us pray for the children of our country that they will have a brighter and better future.  May they still have an abundant Mother Nature, and may they have better government and church leaders. May they hold on to values and institutions that uphold our 3 Fs as a nation—freedom, faith and family.

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When you become too serious and unbending, you are committing adultery! Not so much in the sense of the Sixth Commandment, but in the sense that you are “adulterating” life with your “adult” concerns, even as you forget the you that is a child!

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Bantay Matanda invites you to a lay forum on Guide to Elderly Care at Janssen Hall of Christ the King Seminary, E. Rodriguez Avenue Extension, Quezon City, on Jan. 26, Saturday, 9 a.m. to 12 noon. Dr. Deana Santos Ringor, a geriatrician who is with St. Luke’s Medical Center, is the resource person and speaker. For inquiries, please call 373-2262 / 2548 or 0917-4167849.

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A moment with the Lord:

Lord, remind me again never to forget and never to lose the child that is in me. Amen.

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