LONGTIME FRIEND ARNIE DeLuca once attended a gathering when author and lecturer Leo Buscaglia talked about a contest he was asked to judge. The purpose of the contest was to find the most caring children. Here are five of the winning entries.

• No. 1. A 4-year-old child, whose next door neighbor was an elderly gentleman, who had recently lost his wife, was sitting on the patio. Upon seeing the man cry, the little boy went into the old man’s yard, climbed onto his lap and just sat there.

When his mother asked him what he had said to the neighbor, the little boy just said “Nothing, I just helped him cry.”

• No. 2. Teacher Debbie Moon’s first graders were discussing a picture of a family. One little boy in the picture had a different hair color than the other members. One of her students suggested that he was adopted.

A little girl said “I know all about adoption, I was adopted.” Another child asked “What does it mean to be adopted?”

It means that you grew in your mommy’s heart instead of her tummy,” said the girl.

• No. 3. On my way home one day, I stopped to watch a Little League baseball game that was being played in a park near my home. As I sat down behind the baseline, I asked one of the girls what the score was.

She said “We’re behind 14 to nothing,” with a smile.” I replied “I have to say you don’t look very discouraged.”

“Discouraged? Why should we be discouraged?” the little girl asked with a puzzled look on her face. “We haven’t been up to bat yet.”

• No. 4. Whenever I’m disappointed with my spot in life, I stop and think about little Jamie Scott. Scott was trying out for a part in the school play. His mother told me that he’d set his heart on being in it, though she feared he would not be chosen.

On the day the parts were awarded, I went with her to collect him after school. Jamie rushed up to her, eyes shining with pride and excitement. “Guess what, Mom. I’ve been chosen to clap and cheer,” he shouted, saying those words that will remain a lesson to me.

• No. 5. An eyewitness account from New York City, N.Y., on a cold day in December, some years ago stated a little boy, about 10 years old, was standing before a shoe store on the roadway, nearly barefooted, peering through the window and shivering with cold.

A lady approached the young boy and said “My, but you’re in such deep thought staring in that window.” The boy replied “I was asking God to give me a pair of shoes.”

The lady took him by the hand, went into the store and asked the clerk to get half a dozen pairs of socks for the boy. She then asked if he could give her a basin of water and a towel. He quickly brought them to her.

She took the little fellow to the back part of the store and, removing her gloves, knelt down, washed his little feet and dried them with the towel.

By this time, the clerk had returned with the socks. Placing a pair upon the boy’s feet, she purchased them and also purchased him a pair of winter shoes.

She tied up the remaining pairs of socks and gave them to him. She patted him on the back and said “No doubt, you will be more comfortable now.”

As she turned to go, the astonished child caught her by the hand and looking up into her face, with tears in his eyes, asked her “Are you God’s wife?”