Children helping children, at home and at school

As we adjust to these times of uncertainty, we are reminded how closely we are connected to each other across God’s world. Pope Francis, Missio’s patron, calls us to respond to this crisis with ‘the universality of prayer, of compassion, and of tenderness’.

At Mission Together, prayer has always been an important way for children to live out our motto: ‘Children helping Children’. Through their prayers and donations, children all over the world stand in solidarity with those who live in poverty overseas.

Children like those living at Nazareth House in South Africa, whom schools helped during Advent. Abandoned or orphaned, the 40 children and babies are cared for by religious sisters. Already living with HIV/AIDS, frequent power cuts and water shortages, the pandemic is hitting the most vulnerable the hardest. The Sisters pray with the children and assure them that there are children elsewhere who pray for them. It is this exchange of love and friendship that makes Mission Together so unique.

By following our home schooling activities pupils can still be ‘children helping children’.  As well as Maths, English and Geography, our resources include prayers and Scripture to encourage children to stand in solidarity with children who were already living in hardship before the pandemic.

The popular Five Finger Prayer is said on the fingers and thumb of one hand. Each digit prompts children to pray for others before they pray for themselves. They discover how, through God’s love, we are connected to one another, even to those faraway, whom they may never meet.

As we enter the month of Mary, we are adapting and adding to our Marian resources to encourage children to ask for Our Lady’s intercession. Just as the child saints, Jacinta and Francisco, prayed during the dark days of the war, so, too, can children bring hope to the world by praying the Mission Rosary. Our Pray with Our Lady Chart makes the prayer more manageable for younger children, who are invited to draw the face of a child from the continent they are praying for.

As children follow our home school activities, they are reminded that  through their prayers and actions, they can still bring God’s love into the world, in whatever way they can and wherever they may be. All Mission Together’s home school resources can be found here.

Article by Sheila Isaac: Missio’s Education Coordinator for Children and Young People.