Book of Zechariah 8:1-8.
This word of the LORD of hosts came: Thus says the LORD of hosts:
I am intensely jealous for Zion, stirred to jealous wrath for her.
Thus says the LORD: I will return to Zion, and I will dwell within Jerusalem; Jerusalem shall be called the faithful city, and the mountain of the LORD of hosts, the holy mountain.
Thus says the LORD of hosts: Old men and old women, each with staff in hand because of old age, shall again sit in the streets of Jerusalem.
The city shall be filled with boys and girls playing in her streets.
Thus says the LORD of hosts: Even if this should seem impossible in the eyes of the remnant of this people, shall it in those days be impossible in my eyes also, says the LORD of hosts?
Thus says the LORD of hosts: Lo, I will rescue my people from the land of the rising sun, and from the land of the setting sun.
I will bring them back to dwell within Jerusalem. They shall be my people, and I will be their God, with faithfulness and justice.
The nations shall revere your name, O LORD,
and all the kings of the earth your glory,
when the LORD has rebuilt Zion
and appeared in his glory;
when he has regarded the prayer of the destitute,
and not despised their prayer.
Let this be written for the generation to come,
and let his future creatures praise the LORD:
"The LORD looked down from his holy height,
from heaven he beheld the earth,
to hear the groaning of the prisoners,
to release those doomed to die."
The children of your servants shall abide,
and their posterity shall continue in your presence,
that the name of the LORD may be declared on Zion;
and his praise, in Jerusalem,
when the peoples gather together
and the kingdoms, to serve the LORD.
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke 9:46-50.
An argument arose among the disciples about which of them was the greatest.
Jesus realized the intention of their hearts and took a child and placed it by his side
and said to them, "Whoever receives this child in my name receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me. For the one who is least among all of you is the one who is the greatest."
Then John said in reply, "Master, we saw someone casting out demons in your name and we tried to prevent him because he does not follow in our company."
Jesus said to him, "Do not prevent him, for whoever is not against you is for you."
“Whoever receives this little child in my name, receives me”
“As nurslings, you shall be carried in her arms, and fondled in her lap; as a mother comforts her son, so will I comfort you,” (Is 66, 12-13). The mother embraces her children and we seek out our own mother, the Church. Anything weak and helpless, whose weakness needs supporting, is sweet and vulnerable and endearing: God does not refuse his help to anything so young. Parents devote particular gentleness to their little ones;…in the same way, the Father of all creation gathers to himself all who take refuge in him, regenerates them by his Spirit and adopts them as his sons. He knows how gentle they are and they are the ones he loves, helps and protects; that is why he calls them his little children, (cf Jn 13,33).
The Holy Spirit, speaking through the mouth of Isaiah, applies the expression “child” to the Lord himself: “For a child is born to us, a son is given us…” (Is. 9,5). Who is this child, then? This newborn infant in whose image we, too, are children? Through the same prophet, the Spirit describes his greatness: “Wonder-Counselor, God-Hero, Father-Forever, Prince of Peace,” (v.6).
Oh great God! Oh perfect child! The Son is in the Father and the Father is in the Son. How could the teaching this child gives not be irreproachable? It includes us all to guide us all, his children. He has stretched out his hands to us and we have placed in them all our faith. To this little child John the Baptist himself also gave testimony: “Behold,” he said, “the Lamb of God,” (Jn 1,29). Since Scripture has called children ‘lambs’, it has called “Lamb of God” the Word of God who became man for us and who wanted to become like us in all things, the Son of God himself, the child of the Father.