Yesterday was a joyful day for Vince and Summer and our entire family. Jeremiah, their first son, was born. I do not remember my own infancy but I have vague recollections of have been fussed and doted on. I was a sickly asthmatic baby and my Ima hugged and cuddled me a lot. Babies and children are for loving and cuddling and snuggling -favorite activities of Jonathan and Jane.

Babies are a blessing, each one of them a unique and new life. Each baby born is a sign of hope for mankind, a guarantee against and for the future. And yet, there is so much abuse and violence committed against young ones. I pray for the countless children:

  • who will wake up this morning with an empty stomach and who will probably go to sleep later with their bellies still growling because they are hungry. Even in affluent America, 16.7 million children lived in food insecure households in 2011.
  • who are robbed of their childhood for they have to struggle and work early in life to keep body and soul together. Worldwide, 10% of all children are forced into child labor and in sub-Saharan Africa, 50% of all children work.
  • who are abused and maltreated in their own homes and by people who are supposed to be taking care of them. In the US alone, as many as 115 children are abused every hour.
  • who will never see the light of day because their lives are aborted and snuffed out even while still in the womb. More than 40 million abortions are done each year.
  • who are taught and trained to be violent and angry as boy soldiers in the service of some demented despot or warped ideology. One study estimated that 200,000 to 300,000 children are serving as soldiers for both rebel groups and government forces in current armed conflicts.
  • who are sold into slavery or even prostitution by their own parents out of desperation or perversion. Estimates of children living in slavery run as high as 8 million.

I will do something special for children today.

Then little children were being brought to him in order that he might lay his hands on them and pray. The disciples spoke sternly to those who brought them; but Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of heaven belongs.”
Matthew 19:13-15

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