Making a (little) Difference

I spent my whole day today with my young friends from San Isidro Labrador Chapel in Majada Out. I invited the youth group members for a swim in the college swimming pool. I expected thirty to come and eighteen came. The others couldn’t make it for personal reasons.

It was a simple gathering. They brought their own food which we shared among us, from the humblest viand to the two 1.5L orange soft drink. We were after the fellowship and the fun of being together. Under the glaring sun, eighteen young people had their fill of laughter and joy, and a little bit of pool water.

Watching them under the hut (I was hiding from the noon sun), I began reflecting on what on earth I am doing. What is the meaning of bringing together some young people and giving them a good time? Is this my vision of changing the world when in my idealism I entered the seminary seven years ago? The frying heat was drying up my vigor as I watched the children splash in pure glee in the blue pool.

No, I couldn’t hope to make a large difference on the world in the little things that I do for my friends. Organizing games and inserting basic human values, pep talks, and word-in-ear are minuscule compared to the bigger problems of the world. I am not a superhero, I reminded myself. But I know deep inside me, that as I watch these young people enjoying their time, oblivious to the darn noon sun, what I am doing is already making a difference, even if little. The best thing that I can do at my stage of life is to impress upon these youth that life is a gift, that there is hope, and there will always be someone who continues to love them. Not me, but God.



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