They say that life is not measured by the
breaths we take, but by the moments
take away our breath. This story may
of those moments that take away your
Christina was born poor. Living in
just outside Rio de Janeiro, she just
not take her destitution any more and
day she slipped away from home. Her
was heart broken. She knew that the
will suck her daughter effortlessly.
daughter had no way of earning money
she would be too stubborn to give up
return home. When pride meets hunger,
can do things that were before unthinkable.
So the mother decided to go into the
city and look for her. Before leaving,
stopped at one of these instant photograph
booths and spent all her money taking
Bars, hotels, nightclubs, any place
the reputation for street walkers or
all in vain. Her daughter had disappeared.
However the mother decided to leave
behind her. At each place she left
- taped on a bathroom mirror, tacked
hotel bulletin board, fastened to a
phone booth. And on the back of each
she wrote a note.
It wasn't too long before both the
and the pictures ran out, and the mother
had to go home. Tired and dejected.
It was a few weeks later that young
descended the hotel stairs. She was
and her brown eyes spoke of pain and
Her laughter was broken. Her dream
As she reached the bottom of the stairs,
she saw the picture in the lobby window…
She could not believe her eyes. Choking
tears, she pulled out the small photo.
on the back was this compelling invitation.
"Whatever you have done, whatever
have become, it doesn't matter. Please
This is what Christianity is all about.
woman looking for the lost drachma.
looking for the lost sheep. An early
on the famous parable of the lost sheep
Jesus telling the sheep when he finally
her, "I love you more because
made me suffer more".
This is the heart of Christianity.
what the tenderness of God is all about.
There is no bigger suffering than sin.
may look different. But the stark truth
that the biggest ache in life is not
in a bed or worry for lack of money
Sin is not fun. It is torture. And
why the Church is full of compassion
sinners. This is why the Church always
Karl Menninger, the famed psychiatrist,
said that if he could convince the
in psychiatric hospitals that their
were forgiven, 75 percent of them could
out the next day!
If only people knew the beauty and
of Christianity, they would fill our
The guy had puppies for sale. They
"How much are you asking for them?"
asked this tiny little boy. "Anywhere
from $40 to $60", answered the
owner as he whistled for the dogs to
out of the kennel.
Out came Ko'a, followed by five teeny,
dogs. One puppy was lagging considerably
behind. Immediately the little boy
him and asked, "What's wrong with
little dog?" The man explained
the little puppy did not have a hip
It would always limp. It would always
The little boy reached out of his pocket
all the money he had. Not much really.
three dollars. He was all excited.
is the puppy that I want to buy."
The store owner tried to dissuade the
from getting that dog. "No, you
want to buy that little dog. If you
want him, I'll just give him to you."
The little boy got quite upset. He
straight into the store owner's eyes,
his finger, and said, "I don't
you to give him to me. That little
worth every bit as much as all the
dogs and I'll pay full price. In fact,
give you the three dollars now and
every fifteen days until I have him
The store owner countered, "You
do not to want to buy this little dog.
is never going to be able to run and
and play with you like the other puppies."
To his surprise, the little boy reached
and rolled up his pant leg to reveal
twisted, crippled left leg supported
big metal brace. The boy looked up
store owner and softly replied, "Well,
I don't run so well myself, and the
puppy will need someone who understands!"
We all need someone who understands.
found someone who understands me. His
is Jesus. He can understand my brokenness
because He himself was weak and broken
day, hanging on a cross.
He can understand us well…
(c) Fr. Pius Sammut, OCD. Permission
hereby granted for any non-commercial
provided that the content is unaltered
its original state, if this copyright