Madonna and Child

By Fr. Christopher Kubat  

During my college years, while at home, my uncle, then in his mid-50s, came over for a visit. As he bent over to give his mother a kiss, my Irish grandmother grabbed his bald head and planted a kiss right smack on top and said, “You’re just my little boy!”

Saying nothing, I thought, ‘Little boy? Lady … he’s an old man!’ He seemed so ancient at the time. 

About six months ago, a mother with a grade-school-aged boy was admitted to St. Gianna’s. After many 7 a.m. Masses, I would see this young mother and her son sit together outside the chapel door, in the front lobby, waiting for his ride to school.

In the beginning, I observed they were two ships in the night, the mother staring into the parking lot and her son staring into the screen of a small video game. Then one morning I greeted them and introduced myself.

After planting a seed that it would be better for this young son to look into the eyes of his mother and speak to her, rather than looking into a screen and ignoring her, I began seeing a gradual change. This happened over a course of six months, after complimenting him every time I would see him talking to his mom.

Then one recent morning I saw something moving. As he was waiting for a ride for school, he was resting his head on this mother’s lap.

After giving him a double-dosed compliment, I told him I was going to see my mother. His eyes widened after telling him her age. I pointed out that, in addition to kissing me every time I visit her, she tells me that I am just her little boy.

As we meditate on the mystery of Christmas, let us ponder the many times our Blessed Mother held the head of the Infant Jesus close to her cheek; the many times she held her young son close to her Immaculate Heart; the many times they embraced during His earthly life and the last time she held His dead body close after it was taken down from the cross. She did so because He was just her little boy.

It is our prayer at Catholic Social Services and St. Gianna’s Women’s Homes that you have a blessed and holy Christmas and Christmas season and a happy New Year!

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