Children offer us hope and belief in the future. They are innocent, full of goodness and joy. One of my favorite sounds is the laughter of little children, especially my own grandchildren! Sadly, in many places, children are not living lives of laughter. Rather, they bear the burdens of others’ sins, and their childhood is taken away.
Pope Francis is asking us to pray for all children who suffer and that they be given basic needs, including family affection and education. Many of us take simple things for granted in our own families, right? But many children are not receiving these simple things due to situations beyond their control. They have no way of keeping themselves safe and protected, no recourse, no voice. For most people, the natural inclination towards children is a desire to care for and protect them from harm. However, this is not true in all parts of the world, and we have seen many ways in which children are not taken care of well.
We can help children who suffer in many ways. Prayer of course, is where we begin. And then, ask God how you can help in more tangible ways. I think it is best to start in your own local community. Let me offer a few ideas to get you started: donate clothes, food, and school supplies; offer to tutor or advocate for abused children.
We are called to pray for and care for those in need. This intention focuses on children who carry heavy burdens. Together, let us unite our prayers with those of the Holy Father as we pray together for children who are suffering.
Deanna Bartalini, M.Ed.; M.P.A.
Deanna Bartalini, M.Ed.; M.P.A., is a certified spiritual director, writer, speaker and content creator. She is the founder of the LiveNotLukewarm.com online community, a place to inform, engage and inspire your Catholic faith through live, interactive faith studies. Her weekly Not Lukewarm Podcast gives you tips and tools to live out your faith in your daily life.