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Header - Family Tip 12 - 10 Nevers of a Good Parent

"Train up a child in the way he should go, and ... he will NEVER depart from it."
(Prov 22:6) 


1.  Never make a promise you don’t intend to keep. It brings discredit on you and teaches your child to lie.

2.  Never shout. To rear a child you must control him. As humans we are only controlled by qualities we do not have ourselves. If there is one quality a child does not possess, it is calm, which is the direct opposite of the extreme mobility of his nature, his impulsive impressionability. Calmness controls him, not shouting.

3.  Never deceive. “Give me your whistle; you will see what fine music I can make.” The child, with no defense, gives you his whistle and you put it in your pocket: “Now with the whistle there, you can’t annoy us anymore.”

4.  Never punish trust. By saying, for example, if you want the child to take some disagreeable medicine: “Oh this is good! Drink it, you will see.” The child sips it and pushes away the deceiving cup. You have failed him in your words. A few scenes of this kind and the child will lose all confidence in those who speak to him. If we wish to be believed, we must not abuse belief.

5.  Never do yourself what the child, with a little time and ingenuity, can do himself; otherwise, he will never learn to take the initiative. On the contrary, confront him as soon as possible and as often as possible with tasks that are beyond him and which are capable of challenging him a bit so that he learns to gauge his strength, to remain humble because of non-success, and eager for struggle because he wants to conquer the obstacle.

10 Nevers of a good parent collage6.  Never tolerate backtalk to a command, or grumbling, or any argument about it. Never take back a prohibition especially if the child tries to work its recall by tears and coy maneuvering.

7.  Never present a task to the child as completely beyond his capabilities as in “Could you do that? You’ll be too afraid to do that?”—so that he gets the idea of a possible sidetracking of the issue or a sliding out of it altogether. No, tell him squarely what to do as if it were just an ordinary, simple matter. “Do this. Go there, please.” In this way the child will not question his ability to do what is asked.

8.  Never seem to attach importance to little scratches, bumps, and bruises he gets (naturally, proper attention should be paid to real needs). The child often cries when he hurts himself just to get attention, and being pitied makes him think he is a more interesting individual when injured. If you do not appear excited, he will understand that it is useless to make a tragedy of the affair. Care for the hurts that need care, and far from magnifying the case, explain that it isn’t anything much: “You will have many others! Be brave and try to have more nerve about it!” The child grows calm.

9.  Never inflict a humiliating punishment in the presence of others, except in the rare case that might be needed to punish a deeply rooted pride. Aside from such a case, you would be degrading a child beyond reason: “Look how ugly he is!” “How clumsy you are!” Or what is worse—“Look at your brother, see how good he is!” Such comparisons are odious and only excite jealousy.

10.  Never flatter: “Isn’t he a darling!” The child knows this only too well. Encourage him, but don’t praise him. To praise him [in this instance—Ed.] is to admire him for an advantage he has without merit on his part; to encourage him is to congratulate him on meritorious effort. Never tolerate the adulations of people who visit you either. 

 


Adapted from Raoul Plus, S.J.’s Christ in the Home (Colorado Springs, CO: Gardner brothers, 1951), 138 – 140. It is a treasure chest of advice for Catholics on the practical and spiritual concerns of raising a family.

 

Click here for a printable list of these 10 "Nevers" of a Good Parent!

 

 

 

Quote of the day

DAILY QUOTE for April 8, 2020

Every virtue in your soul is a precious ornament which makes...

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April 8

Every virtue in your soul
is a precious ornament
which makes you dear to God and to man.
But holy purity, the queen of virtues, the angelic virtue,
is a jewel so precious
that those who possess it become like the angels of God in Heaven,
even though clothed in mortal flesh.

St. John Bosco

 
My Mother, I will stand with you on OCTOBER 10, 2020

 

Saint of the day

SAINT OF THE DAY

St. Julie Billiart

She was miraculously healed of the paralysis of her legs on...

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St. Julie Billiart

Born on July 12, 1751 in Cuvilly, France, Marie Rose Julie Billiard was the daughter of fairly well-to-do peasant farmers who also owned a small shop. From early childhood Julie had a keen interest in spiritual things and by seven years of age she had memorized the catechism and attained an understanding of it beyond her years.

During her youth, her father’s shop was robbed and her father attacked. This so traumatized his daughter that she became ill and gradually a physical paralysis took hold of her. Deprived of the use of her legs, she eventually had great difficulty in even speaking. Julie's paralysis lasted for twenty-two years, and throughout this whole trial she continued to teach her beloved catechism to children and to trust unwaveringly in the everlasting goodness of “le bon Dieu”. Her infirmities drove her to an even deeper life of prayer and union with God.

During the Reign of Terror of the French Revolution when the pastor of Cuvilly was superseded by a constitutional priest sworn to the new atheistic government, Julie influenced her friends and neighbors to boycott the intruder. Though an invalid herself, she worked to hide and assist fugitive priests who remained loyal to the Catholic Church, and for this charitable work she was herself persecuted and obliged to escape from place to place – on one occasion, hiding all night under a haystack.

While taking refuge with the aristocratic family of Gézaincourt, Julie met Françoise Blin de Bourdon, a noblewoman who had barely escaped the guillotine by the fall of Robespierre before her execution. The two became close friends and collaborators.

After the Terror, they both dedicated themselves to the spiritual care of poor children, and the Christian education of girls in a generation sorely neglected by the ravages of the Revolution.

In 1804, after a novena to Him, Julie Billiart was miraculously healed of the paralysis of her legs on the feast of Sacred Heart of Jesus. Now physically free to pursue a full range of activity, her educational work increased rapidly.

At odds with the bishop of Amiens through the meddling influence of a misguided young priest, Julie and Françoise were obliged to move to Namur, in present-day Belgium, where with the full support of the local bishop, they proceeded with their work, eventually founding the Institute of Notre Dame de Namur, today in sixteen countries around the world.

Julie Billiart died on April 8, 1816 while praying the Magnificat. She was canonized in 1969.

Weekly Story

WEEKLY STORY

He hung on a cross that day, writhing in pain and discomfort...

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And He Stole Heaven

He hung on a cross that day, writhing in pain and discomfort, the infamous highwayman.
 
On his left hung another man, covered in the matted blood of his wounds. Yet, with the exception of a few intermittent words, there was no sound from him.

As time passed, the thief became more and more engrossed in the silent crucified beside him, and less and less in his own plight.St Dismas Picture

Indeed life is ironic, mused Dismas, this man who had lived in the open, and was acclaimed as a healer and even as a king, now hung beside him who had spent his life lurking and hiding.

And now they were lifted up, both on a high parallel. He could see the roof tops of the city, he could see the highways he had stalked, and he could see the way they had walked. Now he looked down on those gathered around this place of execution, the Roman soldiers, the Pharisees, the curious, the friends of the man beside him…and a young man supporting a lady directly beneath them...

And then he knew her; that upturned face, that maidenly majesty now wracked by sorrow, her tear-filled eyes fastened on the man on his left–Yes, he knew that face.

As the wheels of time rolled back in his mind,  his heart gave a jolt as he remembered that blessed day in the desert, decades ago, when a young family making its way to Egypt, sought refuge for the night in his family’s hovel. The man was strong and kind, the woman was the fairest his child’s eyes had seen, and she carried a golden haired babe, as if nothing in the universe was more precious.

He remembered the lady’s gaze on him, her beautiful eyes full of concern for the leprous sores on his young body. Then she and his mother talked. And next, he was being bathed in the same water the lady had just washed her infant son.

And then the sores were gone.  His mother wept for joy, and kissed the lady’s hands, and the baby’s feet. And even his robber-father was moved, and offered the strong man and his family the best in the house.

Now, in one revealing flash, he knew the identity of the wounded man on his left.  He looked again at the lady, and her eyes, those same sweet eyes of old, were on him once more.  
He felt his heart quiver, as the power of gratitude filled his being and softened his criminal soul.  And then came tears, rivers of tears.  When he could speak, he turned to the left,

“Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom.”

And the Lord turned his face to him, His divine eyes on him, and he heard the most beautiful voice he had ever heard, a voice at once full of pain and full of strength, full of sweetness and full of majesty, a judge’s voice, and a father’s voice,

“Amen, amen I say to you, today you shall be with me in paradise.”

 

By Andrea F. Phillips
Based on: A Legend of St. Dismas and Other Poems,
Copyright by P. J. Kenedy and Sons. 1927, p. 18.

 

Free Meditation Booklet - Be Still and Know That I AM GOD

He hung on a cross that day, writhing in pain and discomfort, the infamous highwayman.

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