by Fr. Bob Hoffman
Practicing the Faith as a Family
One of the stories that my parents still tell from my childhood was about a parent at a school bus stop who was telling their child to behave better. But, in the process of giving this correction, the parent was modeling precisely the same behavior that the child was supposed to stop doing.
As we grow up, we often become what our parents have modeled for us. We likely remember what they did far more than what they said.
It is the same way with our faith.
If we want our children to have faith into adulthood, they must see us practice the faith. If we want faith to be important to them, we must show that it is important to us.
Weekly church attendance is critical. So is daily family prayer. And so is making a point to have symbols of our faith prominently displayed throughout the home.
It is not only important that we embrace our faith in such a way that children see that, but the way in which we embrace it is also important. Is it a burdensome obligation, or a joy to do? Is it something that we reluctantly do, or something that look forward to doing?
Children often do as we do rather than do as we say. If we want them to become people of faith, then we must walk the talk ourselves too.