Children

A sign pointing toward happily ever after - photo from Unsplash
Some years ago, I knew a young woman, a teacher, whose dearest wish in life was to be married and to have a large family. However, her first problem was that she couldn’t find a “good man”. Apparently there is a widespread shortage of “good” men. There are lots of men around, but apparently not many “good” men. But, eventually, when she was 32, she found a possible candidate. After only two years of courtship, agonised decision–making and huge telephone bills, they were married and settled down...
A child in a JRS after school programme, northern Ethiopia (Christian Fuchs/JRS USA))
The Jesuit Refugee Service has added its voice to an international call by Catholic agencies to governments to guarantee the protection and safety of child migrants, ahead of Universal Children's Day this Sunday (20 November).  The organisations – which include Caritas Internationalis and Pax Christi International – say they stand in solidarity with all children on the move whose rights to live, learn and flourish are compromised.“We are living a critical moment in...
A man clutches his ice cream
I am sure that, this morning, as soon as we awoke, all of us had just one major concern in our minds – would Ireland beat England at Twickenham this afternoon?When I was very young, my mother’s most annoying favourite saying was: “Offer it up for the Holy Souls in Purgatory”. Usually she said it to me when I was filled with righteous indignation at some major injustice that had been perpetrated against me – such as an unequal division of the ice cream. It is not, you understand, that I could...
Bear Grylls in action, who has launched a childrens' manifesto to get kids more active
As Bear Grylls launches his summer ‘Children’s Manifesto’, here is what St. Ignatius might do …As those seemingly endless summer holidays continue, Chief Scout and outdoor survivor, Bear Grylls tells all couch-potato kids to put away their Xbox's and tablets and explore the great outdoors to create their own adventures.Flying by helicopter to launch the 6 point ‘Children’s Manifesto’ at scout summer camps, Bear Grylls met over 8,000 young people during his recent one day tour of Britain.This...
Pope Francis has called for “responsible” parenthood, saying that to be good Catholics people do not need to breed “like rabbits”. Speaking on the flight back to Rome from the Philippines, he was responding to questions from journalists about the size of families and the Church's teaching on birth control.During his visit to Asia, the Pope met with former street children who had been abandoned by their parents because they could not afford to care for them. He was asked whether he felt the...
Baby against sunset
There are different kinds of power and different kinds of authority. Military power for example, physical, political, economic, moral power, charismatic power. And different kinds of authority:  we can be forced into acquiescing to certain demands or we can be persuaded into accepting them. Power and authority are not all of a kind. Imagine four persons in a room.  The first is a dictator who wields a brutal power. Next to him sits a gifted athlete whose quickness and strength give him a...