Dolan's Image:Jesus as a Baby
I Hope This Is Indicative of What We Can Expect from Milwaukee!"
The newly appointed Bishop of Milwaukee, Timothy Dolan, delivered a catechesis on Reconciliation to the WYD crowd. Among the remarks quoted:
"God comes as a baby, because babies are irresistible," Dolan said. "And God wants us to take him up and welcome him into our arms like a baby."
While the image is an inverse of St. Therese of Lisieux's "Elevator to God," it is, nevertheless an extremely appealing image. And we should recall that St. Therese was St. Therese of the Child Jesus and the Holy Face.
At a shrine near where I live (Mary, Queen of the Universe) there are several statues that show the Child Jesus. One of the most touching is Jesus at age 3 or 4 running toward his Mother's open arms. How could you not pick up such a child and carry him with you? Is there anything more endearing than a child telling you, "I love you"? I suppose this is why the image appeals to me. Often enough we are told that Jesus loves each of us, and sometimes, particularly as a male in society, that is a difficult message to hear. But what father cannot hear that message from their own child? So if we take Jesus up as a baby, as a toddler, as a child, we still have the Son of God, we still have our Brother and our Lord. But perhaps we have an image that can help foster a greater intimacy.