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Lynn Thomas wrote:

Hi, guys —

I am a Catholic parent and practice my religion faithfully. My concern is my children's salvation. I worry because they have left the faith and never go to Church.

  • What can I do to bring them back to our faith?

They are grown adults and have children of their own.

  • What can I say or do to help them?

Thank-you,

Lynn

  { What can I say or do to bring my grown Catholic children and their children back to our faith? }

Bob replied:

Dear Lynn,

Very little, but you can pray and offer to bring the grand kids to church.
Sadly, they have a better chance of being converted through their kid's witness than yours.

Peace,

Bob Kirby

Mike replied:

Hi Lynn,

I would agree with Bob but add the following. In the past, parents have tried to bring their children back to the faith by force and this never works. Don't get me wrong. Having house rules and discipline are necessary for solid child formation but today's culture is extremely harsh to those who value religious principles and strive to incorporate them into their children. Now that you are in this situation, a better question to ask is:

  • What should I do as a faithful Catholic parent not to push my children further from me and the faith?

The answer:

  • Strive to live a sacramental life, renewing your Sunday Covenant by going to Sunday Mass (and daily Mass, if possible), and going to Confession on a regular basis.
  • Be a loving, praying mother who is unmistakably Catholic while respecting your children’s choices on faith issues, whether those choices are for themselves or for their own children.
  • Pray the Rosary day and night for them and ask the Lord to bring people into their lives that have been blessed by the Catholic faith. I know of people who have e-mailed us telling us they want to convert to the faith because of the amazing lives of other Catholics concluding — this is a faith they want to be part of, so they are faithful Catholic witnesses out there.

St. Francis has told us in the past:

Evangelize everyone and when necessary use words.

His point is, because in a real way, Jesus’ life is being lived in us by the Eucharist, we are mini Jesus’ for others who do not know or accept Him. Yeah, we do have broken bodies of flesh that draw us to temptations but that challenge can be overcome through regular Confession.

  • We interfere with His desire, to bring the Good News of the whole Catholic faith to others, when we dissent from the faith or scandalize the faith by what we publicly say or do.

  • When we are faithful witnesses to our faith, in words and actions, whether we are aware of it or not, we are being that Catholic Gospel St. Francis talked about for the world to witness.

It is that slow and stead witness that will slowly bring them around to at least consider going to some Sunday services. Some youth, growing up, have been turned off by the faith they were raised in because they were just told to do this, or that, without being given any reasons.

This is why Catholic Apologetics is so important. Catholic Apologetics and faith sharing, done correctly, respects ones intellect and the search and discovery faith-interest that is normal for any growing teen.

I hope this helps,

Mike

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