“… Whoever welcomes this child in my name welcomes me …”
In today’s Gospel, we hear Jesus’ call to welcome a “little child” in his name; a call that we often take for granted; a call that we often believe we do. How often do I think to myself, “Of course I help the youths in church!” or, “I ensure that the young people in my care are looked after and never harmed!”
Yet, what Jesus is really asking of us, is to welcome the people in our society who are in an equivalent class to the children of his time. They were at the lowest ranks of society. They were voiceless. Their words stood for nothing. Without their parents, they would have almost surely ended up on the streets.
Therefore, to be the greatest in God’s Kingdom today, we must also welcome the outcasts, and the rejected; the immigrants with no voice; the raped, abused and those marginalised by the ad hoc demands of the environment around them. Let us heed God’s call to be great … the greatest!