June 30.  “When people are sick or in need they will often go to great lengths to get help.  We only know of the South Africans who went for healing to a pastor in Nigeria because of the disaster that befell them when the meeting building collapsed and many died.  You, young people have just been confirmed and renewed the commitment to your faith made by your parents and godparents on your behalf.   What does that commitment mean to you?  Is your faith built on Jesus and a relationship of trust and love or is it about getting your problems solved? Is God the ultimate problem-solver, who operates in different ways in different places and situations and so we can shop around for the best deal?  But it isn’t only young people who do this. Amongst those who went to Nigeria, and still go, are many adult members of our Church. It saddens me to see that.  I believe it saddens Jesus too. Will they be punished for their unfaithfulness as Jesus threatened the Jewish people?“   Those harsh words from the bishop on his return visit to the parish after confirmation made parents and youth squirm in their seats.

Reflect, share, act. Scripture:.   When Jesus came down from the mountain great crowds followed him and behold a leper came to him and said, Lord if you will, you can make me clean.”  Matt 8:1-4.   Pope Francis: the Church, while appreciating the situations of conflict that are part of marriage, cannot fail to speak out on behalf of those who are most vulnerable; the children who often suffer in silence.  Helping heal the wounds of parents and supporting them spiritually is also beneficial for children. Our most important pastoral task with regard to families is to strengthen their love, help to heal wounds and work to prevent the spread of the drama of breakdown. AL 246.