Closer to God

by Sister Mary Joanne, O.C.D.

During Lent, the 3rd graders at St. Theresa’s traditionally prepare the live Stations of the Cross to perform for the school, which also provides a prayer opportunity. The children do it twice once they’ve got it prepared – first for the little people in grade 1 and then for grades 2-8.

While the students worked very hard, the teachers did have quite a time getting them to be sober and serious and to try to understand a little bit about what they were doing. It appeared that this class was going to be a little more of a challenge.

On the Wednesday before Holy Week, the 3rd graders performed the Stations of the Cross for the other students. After their prayer time, the teachers gave the performers a little extra play time because they had worked very hard in presenting the Stations twice. Let loose outside in the field, most of the children were engaged in very active playing.

However, there was one little boy, who was still. The teachers noticed him kneeling in front of the statue of the Blessed Mother. After five minutes, he was still there; 10 minutes later, he was still there. For a good 20-25 minutes, this little boy was completely engrossed in prayer. This little boy was very active and frequently did not do his homework in religion or any other subject. He was not a strong student but was very good at fooling around and at creating mischief. He was the one kneeling, oblivious to the noisy clamor of his classmates playing. The little guy was just lost in prayer before our Blessed Mother.

On the end-of-the-year evaluations, when asked what helped him most to grow closer to God, this little boy wrote that the Stations of the Cross and the sufferings of Jesus helped him grow closer to God.