A Catholic Convert in Ottawa

All Children Are Precious to God

Posted on: August 22, 2013

It’s strange to think that writing something anonymously can make a person famous. Or infamous.

This week, a grandmother in Durham Region received an anonymous letter complaining about the noise Maxwell, her autistic grandson, makes when he plays outside—and the writer even went so far as to suggest the family “euthanize” the boy.

Given the level of awareness about autism today, I can’t understand the writer’s attitude.

When my family lived in Durham Region, children at my son’s school used to do a neighbourhood walk to raise money for autism research and awareness, and brochures sent home to parents provided more information about the autism spectrum. At the schools my son has attended in Ottawa, students learn about autism, and autistic children are integrated into mainstream classes.

So how could a parent hide behind her anonymity to express such ignorant and cruel thoughts?

As I read my bible last night, I came across Ecclesiastes 11:5*: “As you do not know how the spirit comes to the bones in the womb of a woman with child, so you do not know the work of God who makes everything.” The letter writer can’t know the part God intends Maxwell to play in his plans or the difference he’ll make in the lives of his family members and others, nor does she have the right to decide that his life isn’t worth living.

Maxwell’s mother sees her son as a blessing. She spoke to CP24 and was quoted as follows in “Letter targeting boy not hate crime: police,” an article in yesterday’s Ottawa Citizen: “Sometimes when you have a special needs kid, life turns out differently than you planned, but it’s great.”

Some people, like the letter writer, could benefit from a visit to the Autism Canada Foundation website and from time spent thinking about the lyrics of a song many of us learned in Sunday school:

Jesus loves the little children,

All the children of the world.

Red and yellow, black and white,

All are precious in his sight,

Jesus loves the little children of the world.

God loves all his children. He doesn’t love any of his children less because they have special needs.

(*Quote from the Holy Bible, Revised Standard Version, Second Catholic Edition.)

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2 Responses to "All Children Are Precious to God"

Each of us has certain disabilities. But, those who have profound disabilities are precious gifts for us all, for their extraordinary needs afford us opportunities to perform virtuous acts of charity by serving them. God bless!

I saw that story as well and it broke my heart! God can do woderful things through even the least likely of us and you just know He has great things in store for this little boy!

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Food for Thought

(Y)ou do not know about tomorrow. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and we shall do this or that.” ~ James 4:14-15

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