Fr Paul reads from the Gospel of Matthew (19: 13-15) in which the people brought little children to Jesus for him to lay his hands on them and say a prayer. Fr Paul says, the Gospel of Matthew today is his version of the event of the blessing of children – in the technical sense of ‘laying on hands’. Matthew also omits, no doubt from respect for the leaders of the Church, Jesus’ rebuke to the disciples for turning away the children as is recorded in other gospels. The original word for children that is used and translated here normally denotes young children up to the age of seven. So, Matthew may be telling us that such children should be welcomed in the Christian assembly. This would contrast significantly because children had no status and no part in the Jewish assembly. Perhaps Jesus, like Pope Francis, preferred a ‘messy Church’ and was saying that everyone (babies and young children included) is welcome. With this in mind, Fr Paul asks us to reflect on ‘How can I make anyone open to coming to join our community and how do I make others welcome in our church community?’