This is a question I hear from moms all the time – whether they are parenting a kindergartner or a college kid gone astray: “How can I support my kids in their Catholic faith?”
Of course, we would all love a magic answer here, but alas! God has given our children free will and they may sometimes make choices we do not want for them. But I can share some ideas for ways to be encouraging and supportive of our kids’ faith lives.
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Be an example to your children. You can be saying all you want to your kids about the importance of having a prayer life, going to Mass, and receiving the sacraments, but if you are not doing those things, none of what you say matters.
1) Set an example.
Allow your kids to see you pray and make going to Mass a priority. Talk about your relationship with God and your experience of faith.
2) Invite their questions.
One of the greatest gifts of our Catholic faith is that it can help us to seek and know the truth in all things. Don’t be afraid of your kids’ questions and encourage them to ask anything that is on their minds. If you don’t know the answer, you can research Catholic teaching and tradition together.
3) Ask them questions.
You might never know what your kids are thinking about or struggling with if you don’t ask them. You should not be demanding or praying, but do ask questions about what they are thinking about, how they like to pray, and their experience of God. Great conversations begin by letting them know you care about their perspectives.
4) Pray and offer up for them.
The “old fashioned” Catholic idea of offering up for others is a deeply powerful way that we can bring grace into our lives. Pray deliberately for your kids and consider making small sacrifices for them, especially if you know they are going through something difficult. Uniting our own small sufferings with Christ’s makes them infinitely valuable and can shower your family with grace and strength of faith.
This week, I also answer a question from “Justine” who is concerned about controlling her drinking during this time of quarantine.
I also mention the upcoming Catholic Marriage Summit from Joyful Ever After that Dan and I are going to be a part of June 11- 13. It is a free online event, but you do need to register. Go here to sign up!
I have received so much feedback from all of you about my newest book and the first chapter that I shared with you at the end of episode 210. Giving Thanks and Letting Go: Reflections on the Gift of Motherhood is a book in which I share from my heart about the very real changes, challenges, triumphs, and joys of being a mom in an “emptying nest.” You can read that sample chapter at Ave Maria Press. (Use the coupon code BEAN20 to get 20% off your order!)
My book, You Are Enough: What Women of the Bible Teach You About Your Mission and Worth, is available for order! Use the code, GIRLFRIENDS to receive ten percent off your order. Don’t miss out on this special available exclusively to listeners of the Girlfriends podcast.
Have feedback or an idea to share? I would love to hear from you!
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Meet Your Host:
A writer, speaker, wife, and mother, Danielle helps women from all walks of life discover their dignity and worth so they can find peace, balance, and joy in family living. Danielle has been married to her husband Dan for 23 years, and together they have eight amazing children. Currently, Danielle serves as brand manager at CatholicMom.com and host of The Gist, a talk show for women on CatholicTV.
Danielle’s books include, You Are Enough: What Women of the Bible Teach You About Your Mission and Worth and Momnipotent: The Not-so Perfect Guide to Catholic Motherhood, as well as her latest book, Giving Thanks and Letting Go: Reflections on the Gift of Motherhood.
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