Save our Children
The other day I went to see the movie Sound of Freedom and was profoundly disturbed. Knowing what happens to children in the wickedness of the slave trade was not the same as watching it. We are supposed to protect children. We are supposed to honor children. We are not supposed to harm them.
At that time, the collectors of the half-shekel tax went up to Peter and said, “Does not your teacher pay the tax?” He said, “Yes.” And when he came home, Jesus spoke to him first, saying, “What do you think, Simon? From whom do kings of the earth take toll or tribute? From their sons or from others?” And when he said, “From others,” Jesus said to him, “Then the sons are free. However, not to give offense to them, go to the sea and cast a hook, and take the first fish that comes up, and when you open its mouth you will find a shekel; take that and give it to them for me and for yourself.” At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” And calling to him a child, he put him in the midst of them, and said, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child, he is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.”Matthew 17:24-27; 18:1-4
Interesting that today’s reading is both about honoring the government and honoring children. Christ holds up the innocence of children and their faith as the example for us. We adults have become skeptical. We are hardened by the realities of life. Children still trust, which is why the current situation is so disturbing.
Today is also the Feast of Saints Julita and Kyrikos the Martyrs. Saint Kyrikos was martyred as a young child after he refused the overtures of the pagan leader. He was tossed like garbage down a flight of marble stairs and died.
The brief story about Saint Kyrikos made me think of the movie. Instead of protecting the child, the animal destroyed the child. I can’t help but think this is what our society leaders are doing to our children today.
Our society should be protecting our children. Instead, our society is promoting sexual perversion as normal. Instead of uplifting our children, our society is filling them with an unknown amount of medication. Instead of educating our children, our society is using them as political fodder. As usual, not much has changed since pagan times.
We must save our children before it is too late. While they still trust, we must show them the love of Christ rather than sexual immorality. While they still believe, we must help them see their potential in Christ rather than the ranks of modern civil paganism.
We can’t do any saving until we change. Repentance begins with how we see the world. If we continue to allow our children to be abused in the name of ‘being respectful of others,’ we will lose them. We believe in free will, but that free will does not grant them permission to abuse our children.
There is no doubt the world, whose father is the devil, (see John 8.44) is out to get our children away from us, the Church, and Christ. Christ said, “But whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to sin, it would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were drowned in the depth of the sea.” (Matthew 18.6)
Saint Paul takes it one step further when he warned, “who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.” (Romans 1.32) So long as we do nothing to protect our children, the blame will be ours.
We must begin to take seriously the danger our children face in the world. Yes, the world has free will. That means we are also free to rescue our children from the mouths of wolves. The time has come for the Church to establish schools in every city.
What the ancient Greeks discovered in Sparta is still being practiced today. The children were taken from the parents and raised by the ‘state’. By opening Orthodox Schools in every city, we will give them a fighting chance.
Saint Julita, the mother of Saint Kyrikos, went from city to city trying to protect her son. What are we doing to protect our children?