Generosity without bounds

I am a secondary high school teacher so when I was asked to ‘take care of’ a second grade class in Arequipa, Perú, while the teacher was at a meeting, I cringed! What could I do with about 50 little people? Arriving at the classroom I saw that the teacher had left work for the children to do. It was absolutely quiet. Each one was writing away except one little boy. I went over to him and said. “Why aren’t you writing like the other children?” He quickly replied, “I don’t have a pencil.” In a flash the little fellow sitting next to him said nothing but quickly broke his own pencil in two and handed half of it to his friend and went right back to his own work! I was amazed! He didn’t hesitate one moment about giving half of what he possessed to his friend. He had a bigger pencil than he needed then and his friend had none. It was so spontaneous!

I wondered, after seeing that, if my sense of generosity, of sharing, came even near to his…

What a lesson, I learned! By the way, the receiver of the pencil whipped out his little razor blade (a poor boy’s version of a pencil sharpener) and sharpened the dull end and went on with his work.

Sister Helen Phillips, M.M.