Can children make a difference? We realize the missionary potential of children
The Church, in realizing the missionary potential of children, began to ask children to take an active part in proclaiming the Gospel to their peers since the 19th century. Poverty, hunger and illiteracy are some of the common social issues that is hitting the most vulnerable section of our society i.e. the children.
Good Shepherd Church (GSC), Setapak through its Catechetical Ministry takes pride in offering GSC children a programme that consists of prayer, sacrifice and concrete acts of solidarity.
The catechetical team (teachers, students and parents) plan early and set high target for Holy Childhood contribution. Every year, a higher target is set in order to instil in the children the importance of evangelizing to their peers throughout the world by their little sacrifices and contributions.
No one could understand the needs of children better than children themselves. Which is why children are included in these efforts right from the planning stage. Children are constantly reminded they can make a difference. A little from each child and parent will results in a big amount collectively. Under its banner “children helping children”, funds raised for the Holy Childhood Society are directed towards self-help programs involving the building of schools, health and nutrition programs, school fees and teaching and learning resources.
The Good Shepherd children helping children Day was organised with and for the children particularly to raise funds for this cause in a fun and wholesome manner. The Catechetical Ministry perceives that charity is more fun when you are having fun yourself. Amongst the activities held were food sales, car wash, handicraft auction, game booths, face painting, henna art, balloons, and manicure with the collective efforts of students, parents and teachers. Children as young as four were seen walking around with little baskets to sell home baked delicacies and handmade crafts. Parents also setup booths and started whipping out ‘ais kacang’, ice blended beverages and many more sweet offerings.
The end result of these activities coupled with the children’s individual savings is a whopping RM10,000.30. This is the highest amount collected in the KL Archdiocese thus far. Parish Priest Rev Fr Christopher W Soosaipillai had a simple message for these efforts ‘Syabas children, parents and teachers!’. GSC Catechetical Coordinator, Dr Donnie Adams thanked all the catechist who worked tirelessly behind the scenes to achieve this result. The below graph depicts the collection amount over the years and speaks volume of the progress the GSC Catechetical Team has made in engaging children to make a difference.
With utmost conviction, the catechetical team believes that charity begins at home. The onus of instilling this value not only lies with the teachers but on parents too. It’s a collective responsibility to teach kids 2 Corinthians 9:7, ‘Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver’. And it is for this reason that parents and teachers work hand in hand.
Children in communities, orphanages, homes for the disabled, refugees and those living on the streets are greatly assisted by the generosity of these children who wish to make the love of Jesus known everywhere. Parents and teachers will continue to collaborate in helping and guiding these children to become little missionaries, while letting them take on their own responsibilities and accompanying them in carrying out everything that they themselves must do.
Photos of this event is posted on the ministry’s Facebook page, ‘GS Church, Setapak Catechetical Ministry’.
By Charmaine Amanda