YEAR A: HOMILY FOR THE 2ND SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
HOMILY THEME: THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS FOR THE CHILD-LIKE
BY: Fr. Benny Tuazon
HOMILY: (Mt. 18:1-5,10) Feast of the Holy Child, Sto. Niño
In today’s Gospel, Feast of the Sto. Nino, a Holy Childhood Day, Jesus presented the child as a model for those who are worthy of the Kingdom. Jesus does not mean that we remain children but that we should grow up still imbibing the greatness of children. Jesus Himself had a childhood which account was missing in Scriptures. But the way He had become should say a lot about those “hidden childhood” years. No doubt He went through it. He was reared well by His parents, Mary and Joseph, and He was a good Jew. His faith also formed and educated Him. On this feast, we honour the Holy Child and we remember our childhood.
Jesus gave us a child as a model. He must be referring to the child’s dependence, obedience, innocence, and humility. These are all related characteristics which make a child very worthy of the Kingdom. If only we have maintained our dependence, obedience, and humility before the Father, we will always be on track towards the Kingdom. Couple that with willingness to always learn knew things and never coming to a point when we stand at equal footing or even greater than God, we are perfect for the Kingdom. But once we begin to see ourselves as independent and more knowledgeable, we cease being childlike and become childish.
How can we not be a child before God? Without God we are nothing. There is nothing we can call purely our own no matter how strong, rich, talented, and equipped we are. The very things we can call our own are derived from the very basic thing we were given, life! We cannot boast before God. The most we can do is to recognize Him, our Creator, and constant Provider. Humbling ourselves before Him is our best bet. Obeying Him leads us to our proper destiny. Being a child to His being Father is, indeed, the ideal relationship we can have before Him.
Jesus, even when He had grown and gone into His ministry, remained a child to His Father. He calls Him “Abba.” He always set aside a time when He can commune with His father like how children are to their fathers or we should be to the Father. In His most momentous moments, Jesus never failed to seek His Father’s will. He was a Father’s Son.
On this feast of Sto. Nino, we honour the Holy Child who will grow up to be a Holy man and our Saviour. We also go back to our childhood and hope to recover our attitudes of humility, dependence, obedience, and openness to our parents. And we pray for the children of today that they may be protected much more formed and educated in the Christian way.