A few months ago Victoria Hoppes invited me to join the Faith @ Home community by writing short reflections on lectionary texts to help adults teach the stories to young children.
It’s a Sunday after church and we’re stuffing Nutella-ed plates and oatmeal-ed bowls into the dishwasher while also fixing lunch. Except one of us is already done and inviting the neighbors over.
Last week as the kids and I arrived at Operation Kindness animal shelter for our weekly hour of volunteer work, I noticed Big Sugar was in a room off the front lobby. Big Sugar is one of our favorite dogs at the shelter.
When it comes to mistakes, I tend to think I have a pretty healthy attitude on the subject. It’s okay, we all make mistakes, I tell my seven-year-old son when he accidentally falls off his pint-sized skateboard and skins his knee.
The banging of little metal cars against each other with the sounds of crashes made by young mouths. The shuffle of paper and the clack, clack, clack of a pile of markers being dumped out. An angry squeal by a younger sibling to ‘give it back!’
This summer my family is experiencing a whole lot of angst. Small scale going to kindergarten angst and large scale my mother is on her deathbed angst.
Today marks the feast of Joachim and Anne, the parents of Mary and the grandparents of Jesus. They don’t appear in canonical scriptures; lacking source material, generations of Christians have looked for them in themselves.
When I was around eight or nine years old, I was leaving my apartment building in New York City with my mother. As we hit the sidewalk, I became overwhelmed by a huge group of people on our usually quiet block, and we got briefly separated.
To want to belong is innate. For young children, it’s felt through attention and affection.
After online and in-person trainings, and a firm understanding that we would not be adopting any pets of our own, we became certified Operation Kindness volunteers, the largest no kill shelter in north Texas.