Hello and welcome to Beyond the Pew. Today’s episode tackles that age-old question of how do I get my kids interested in church, not just Mass but youth group, but daily prayer, being involved in a community.
Well I wish I could tell you that there is a quick and easy fix that there is a simple solution to this problem because this is an age-old problem. But there isn’t just one quick fix. There’s not just something that we can do that instantly makes our kids interested in their faith. That’s actually the job of the Holy Spirit. That is actually a movement of God.
There’s not just something that we can do that instantly makes our kids interested in their faith.
So the first thing that we can do to get our kids interested in church is to pray for them and to intercede for them and ask the Holy Spirit to change their hearts. So even though there’s not a quick fix we can set the stage for the Holy Spirit to move. And we can help our kids along to gain trust of the Church and to see the Church as a safe place that they can be and to set that stage for the Holy Spirit to enter in their hearts and to change things.
So one thing to realize is that our kids see the church as something that’s uncomfortable most of the time that they don’t fit in or don’t quite belong. And one thing that we can do just practically is introduce kids to the people of the church. Introduce them to the priest. Introduce them to the deacons. Adult relationships are so important and if our kids have adult relationships with people in the Church that aren’t just their parents that helps to build relationships and it can make the Church their turf so that they know that they know that they are welcome because they know other people that are there. And that when they walk into the church that people are actually saying hi how are you, talking to them by name knowing the staple people of the church, knowing the receptionist, knowing the youth minister the different people that are key players at the church help our kids to see Church as a place that they belong, that they’re comfortable being there.
Another thing that we can do is to allow our kids to bring friends. Encourage your kids to bring friends to church. Encourage your kids to bring friends to parish festivals, to youth nights and giving your kids that opportunity to show their friends that this is where I belong and you can belong here too and it actually helps your kids to be a little bit more comfortable in sharing their faith.
Help our kids to see Church as a place that they belong, that they’re comfortable being there
Another suggestion-thing that you can do is especially over the summer just make a list of things that are going on in the parish, maybe like a monthly calendar. And let your kids pick what they want to do. Give them a quota of like okay outside of Mass let’s pick one or two things and so it’s not that you’re forcing them to go do this or go do that but your kids get to pick and so they have a little bit of buy-in of what we do of course outside of Mass.
Another thing that you can do is realize that our kids much of the time are asking themselves when they’re in the church what am I doing here, why am I here, I don’t have a purpose here. So give them a purpose if your kids are old enough have them volunteer, if they’re old enough to help out at the nursery, if they’re maybe if they’re confirmed they can be a Eucharistic minister. They can be a greeter if they can be an usher something like that, they can help out with the little kids. They can help out with the food pantry. Give them a purpose. Give them a mission, and so when they ask themselves what am I doing here, why am i here, they have an answer for that. I’m helping doing this. I belong here because I have a mission here. Give them a mission and they will be the ones to drive that force especially if they have a purpose and they’re helping someone else they’re doing something.
Like I said, I wish that there was a quick fix a quick answer but we can set the stage in prayer and then giving them opportunities to serve, giving them opportunities to evangelize to their friends, making them comfortable in their community, and giving them buy-in for the activities that they do at their parish. Hopefully this was helpful. We will be praying for you. God bless