Pope Benedict XVI in his Christmas Midnight Mass homily in 2005, said of the infant Jesus “that he can make himself vulnerable and come to us as a defenseless child, so that we can love him.” Surely, here is one of the great challenges of our faith – when our instincts are to protect and insulate ourselves against the aggressive secularization of the world, Jesus suggests another way, the way of the child. To open our hearts to the other, to make ourselves vulnerable, to risk rejection – these childlike instincts are the ways of great faith. We do this in pursuit of a far greater prize, yes greater even than self – protection, and that prize is friendship with Jesus Christ. It’s only in this friendship that the deepest questions of the human condition receive answers, and t he deepest longings of the human heart are satisfied.
Let ’ s give thanks this weekend for the faith of the children in our parish. For their ready acceptance of the truths of our faith, and the joy they give to us in their free expression of God ’ s love in their lives. We pray especially this weekend for the young people who make their first Holy Communion. May this be the beginning of a beautiful life of Eucharistic faith for them.