“It is not the will of my Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish” (Mt 18:14).

Jesus uttered this sentence in the context of the parable of the lost sheep, for whose sake He was willing to leave the other ninety-nine to go in search of it and find it.

With these words, Jesus gives us a deep insight into the heart of our heavenly Father. God cares about every single person and does not want any of them to be lost. Even if the majority of people obeyed God’s commandments and were on the safe path to life, He would never cease to search for those who are in danger of falling into the eternal abyss. Until His last breath, our Father would never cease to knock at their door, offering them the grace of conversion so that they might return home to Him.

In yesterday’s Daily Meditation I spoke briefly about the events of Fatima in 1917, when Our Lady appeared to three children and asked them to pray for sinners. She even showed them, for a few moments, hell and the terrible state in which the souls of the damned find themselves. This vision was to move the children – and all those who would later receive Our Lady’s message – to pray intensely for people so that they might be converted and thus saved from eternal damnation and enjoy God for all eternity.

In many ways we, the faithful, are urged to go out with our Heavenly Father in search of the lost sheep, both through our witness of life and, above all, through our fervent prayer. In any case, it is always a response to God’s deepest desire, and so we can be sure that we are cooperating in His plan of salvation.

In eternity we will meet those who, thanks to our witness and prayer, have found their way home. With them we will forever worship the glory and goodness of God and be grateful for all we have done, moved by the Holy Spirit. Every good work done for the salvation of souls will accompany us (cf. Rev 14:13).