Walk into the Kindergarten classroom at OLP and you’ll find children learning things that most adults already know, like how to read, write, do simple math, and take care of their personal things. You’ll find them beginning to understand critical social skills that even adults continue to work on. Things like being a good friend, choosing your words carefully, being inclusive, and how to forgive. However, if you walked into the Kindergarten classroom at OLP, the most refreshing thing to see is the lessons they can reteach us. You will find children effortlessly giving each other compliments. You’ll find children shamelessly asking questions. You’ll find emotions that aren’t hidden deep inside but instead shared readily when asked. And perhaps the most profound thing you’ll see is their deep understanding of seeing and helping those in need.
When we talk about the charity we are supporting this year during Lent, the House of Charity Food Center, we discuss how there are people in our community who do not have enough money or resources to provide for themselves each day. We talk about how that must feel to constantly think about where your next meal will come from. There are no questions like “do they have a job” or “do they deserve this.” These children give a straightforward response; “let’s help them.” They can more clearly see that if someone needs food to eat, then yes, we help. Each day the students in the Kindergarten classroom found coins in their piggy banks and talked to their parents about how they could help people in need. Students brought in varying amounts of money, which is another crucial point. You give what you can. Children would say, “I want to help poor people,” and isn’t that just what Jesus taught us? This lesson is so basic, yet we tend to lose sight of its simplicity as we get older. Yes, of course, we’ll help. We’ll do what we can. So as we end this Lenten season, let us remember what it’s like to be six and give generously to those in need because we simply know that it’s the right thing to do.