Wednesday, September 24, 2008
For Children: A Short and Simple Way of Life
Last night, as we began the prayers of the Rosary, it seems our littlest recognized that I wasn't feeling very well, so he brought his prayer book to me and whispered, "Mama, maybe you should read these. They always help me."
I was so touched to read the pages he had bookmarked. The first listed the Eight Beautitudes, which, as we all know, begin, "Blessed are the poor in spirit..." (How true it is that even a moment of spiritual reading lifts up the heart!) After reading them, I saw a tiny slip of a bookmark on the next page, so I carefully turned the thin leaf. After reading that second page, I realized our littlest was not only offering me spiritual consolation --- he had also given me a glimpse into his own developing interior life. My heart swelled in gratitude...
Because it is a 'short and simple way' that reminds little ones of True Devotion to Jesus through Mary, or perhaps "The Little Way" of St. Therese, and to take as their own the examples of the lives of saints like young St. Dominic Savio or the Blesseds Jacinta and Francisco, I gladly share with you what our youngest son shared with me:
A Short and Simple Way of Life for a Child
Dread mortal sin.
Never commit wilful venial sins.
Fly the occasions of sin.
Avoid bad companions.
Never read a bad book.
Guard your eyes, that they see no evil.
Watch your lips, that they speak no ill.
Pray often -
-To Jesus, to His Mother, to the Saints.
-Say your morning and evening prayers.
-Recite your Rosary.
-Hear Mass as often as you can.
-Receive Jesus frequently in Holy Communion.
Be obedient, be wise, be kind, be industrious, be good.
Honor your parents. Help them. Obey them.
Forget not the Souls in Purgatory.
Always, and above everything else ---love God.
From Jesus Make Me Worthy, a Prayerbook for the Young Boy or Girl
(The Regina Press, New York, 1961)