Raising a Catholic family has its challenges. There are a lot of disturbances in modern culture and even scandals within the church that can shake a family’s faith. But even with the presence of these issues, many of us still hold firm with our values and would like to pass it along to our children. Of course we want to do this not just out of obligation, but we also want this to find joy out of it. So here are some tips to enjoy life as a devout catholic family:
1.) Pray as a family
It’s been mentioned before that “the family that prays together, stays together”. This saying has such a powerful meaning and has truly inspired families to stick together. It is preferred that the head of the household lead the family into this wonderful act where everyone shares in one faith. It is like a miniscule version of what the church is, a community gathered in the presence of the Lord where His love and providence abounds perfectly.
Praying as a family gives children a glimpse of their parents strong faith. And what children see, they copy. The most important prayer that a family should pray is the Holy Rosary.
2.) Go to Holy Mass together and celebrate Sunday’s
Sunday’s are holy days of obligation according to the magisterium of the Catholic Church. Obligations, especially the ones for our Lord, isn’t supposed to be frowned upon as if they’re time consuming burdens. They should actually be celebrated. So after going to Mass, go to a restaurant with your family or go have fun doing nice things together. A Sunday without enjoyment on God’s remembrance is a Sunday wasted.
Life is not just about working for the things that we think will make us happy and secure. God also intends for us to look forward towards days of celebrations and rest. This is something that children should understand. That God does not intend to overwork us, but has all the intention to be with us. No great work of ours can ever compare to the things God can achieve for us.
To celebrate together with the Lord is the fulfilment of the Christian family.
3.) Parents should guide their kids with basic Catholic theology and traditions
Children are smart and they always ask questions to gain insight on things they don’t fully understand. Parents should always be ready to answer these questions and not be dismissive. They are always the first teachers in a kid’s life.
You teach your kids how to save money, you teach your kids how to drive a car, you even teach them house hold chores. You teach your kids all sorts of things that they may grow up as independent and respectable persons. So why wouldn’t you teach them about the deeper meanings and reasons behind the faith?
The theology and traditions of the Catholic Church are beautiful and worth passing along to the next generation.
4.) Have dinner together
Dinners can be a medium of security for a family. When the whole family has dinner together, it means that every body is safe at home that night. Parents must protect their children from the harms that may come from that lurks in the night. The simple act of eating dinner together at home is one of the most non-intrusive protective measures we can offer our family.
Dinners can also be spiritually intimate as the Lord’s supper was. It’s where you can share small insights and stories to your kids about Jesus. Or to tell them something they could cherish before going to bed.
5.) Play together
Playing with your kids is a great way for them to develop character. It is in these moments where your child can learn to trust you and simply just have fun.
A child’s innocent enjoyment with his parents mirrors the greatness that there is in heaven.
6.) Teach your kids about your work
Jesus was a carpenter because his father was one too. Just imagine St. Joseph teaching the young Jesus how to use a hammer or how to build household furniture. Imagine the delightful moment when you see your child become happy for learning something new from you. These moments are beautiful blessings from God that we get to cherish in our hearts.
So teach them how to cook, teach them something about your work, you can even teach them how to pay taxes and mortgages. Teaching them about the things you do in life to provide for the family is a non-condescending way of making your kids understand and appreciate the struggles you go through. You’ll be surprised how fast your kids can pick up on these lessons and how creative they can be.