I was honored to be invited to speak to the 6th graders at Saint Christopher School in Nashua yesterday. They were having a mini-retreat and one of the 6th grade teachers, Ms. Wefers, asked if I could speak to them about service. I spoke to the students last year and this year on their Vocation Day so I have come to know them well. They are a fun group of kids and I love visiting them.
We began by reading the gospel passage from Matthew 25 where Jesus instructs His disciples to feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, clothe the naked, house the homeless, and visit the sick and imprisoned. I explained how these (plus bury the dead) have become known as the Corporal Works of Mercy and how we are all expected to do these for when we do so, we do them for Him.
I cut out pieces of paper with the works of mercy on them and the kids broke up into seven groups based on which one they had. They had to come up with 5 ways they as 12 year olds could carry out the work of mercy.
They then reported back their ideas to the full group. I reminded them that they don't have to wait until they are older to do amazing things and to things for others, they can do them now. We concluded our time by praying the Prayer of Saint Francis from a prayer card I gave to each of them.
We ended the retreat with pizza and brownies. I sat with some of the kids and loved chatted with them, they are so much fun.
I look forward to going back to Vocation Day in October!