Facebook Twitter Pinterest Youtube Instagram Give

Family Tip 14 - Restoring Respect in the Family

 

Respect is:

  • the honor due to someone because of his or her position, authority, and/or level of responsibility
  • the understanding that something or someone is valuable, important and worthy and must be treated in an appropriate manner
  • the consequence of deep admiration for someone or something elicited by abilities, qualities, achievements and virtue.

If respect needs admiration to survive, what do we give our children to admire?

Society goes to great lengths to tear down and ridicule everything that could be or should be admirable. It pokes fun at fathers, mothers, family and authority of any kind. What can we do about it?

 

Benefits:

— You will help children learn how to revere and respect God and His Holy Church

— You will help others to love God

— You will be respected and respectable

— Children around you will learn respect for others

— You will avoid loneliness as respect and courtesy attracts and selfishness and rudeness repel

— You will store up in Heaven a great treasure for the good you have done for souls

 


Restoring Respect in the FamilyFour Tips on How to Restore Respect:


1 – Revere God and His Holy Church

Who is more worthy of respect than God Himself? And if a child is not taught to respect God who is truly worthy of all respect and all admiration, then it becomes difficult to teach a child to respect anyone else.

Children are taught through both word and deed, it is therefore imperative that adults in a position of authority or influence show how much they respect God.

The starting point is taking the children to Church, attending Mass and teaching them to pray by showing them that you pray. The Family Rosary is a wonderful step in this process. All activities cease and are considered secondary in order to dedicate a period of time to Our Lord and His Blessed Mother. This teaches children that Our Lord and Our Lady are worthy of great respect.

Respect shown at Mass is crucial. If children are allowed to act in church the same way they act in the backyard at home, no respect will be cultivated.

When adults treat a church like an auditorium, speaking in loud voices, and conversing about things that have nothing to do with the Mass, the Church or piety, children are being taught that God and the Church are nothing different than everything else and that God deserves no special reverence or respect.

However, when adults are reverent, quiet, respectful and pious, it teaches children that God and the Church are worthy of unique respect and reverence.

  

2 – Be Respectable and Respect Yourself

Each of us are called to represent God to others. In a very unique way, parents represent God to their children. This also holds true for other family members. In a child’s mind, God is reflected by and oftentimes seen through the eyes, behavior, attitudes, body language, and verbal expressions of those around them. Sadly, and all too often, God is not made respectable by those who represent Him.

For example, if a person that the child perceives is greater than he, e.g. parents, grandparents, uncles and aunts, teachers, etc., always responds with anger to any situation, then the child will begin to associate anger with authority. God is the ultimate authority, therefore He is always angry.

This, of course, leads to the inevitable conclusion of the responsibility that each of us has to reflect God appropriately as much as we are able.
Make yourself respectable. The more you respect yourself, the more others will be able to respect you.

Teach by example. Always improve yourself and make every effort to increase in virtue. If you suffer from impatience, always be improving in some way, so that children are able to notice improvement and admire and respect virtue through you.

“Do as I say and not as I do” is the destroyer of all respect! Never have this contradiction in your life. Always be a shining example of consistency for children. If you wish to teach children patience, be patient. If you wish to teach children to be disciplined, then you be disciplined in your own life and in your own affairs. This cultivates respect and admiration in children.

As St. Paul teaches, honor (respect) your spouse. Do not argue with your spouse. If you display anger and animosity toward your spouse, then children will learn to do the same to you. If you honor and respect your spouse always, children will learn to do the same to you and to others.

Avoid the perfection trap. Do not demand perfection that you do not have. Always encourage and require improvement, but do not destroy respect by requiring from children what you do not possess yourself.

Beware of pride and obstinacy. Nothing will undermine respect and admiration quicker.

Strive to have in yourself and in the home a balance of firmness and gentleness. The American model of a man who has to be rigid, stern, unforgiving and always right is very, very far from the Catholic model of manhood.

 

3 - Expect Respect

Never allow, permit or tolerate disrespect or rudeness. Be counter-cultural. Teach children that actions and behavior have consequences.

Establish clear and reasonable rules, expectations and guidelines in the home for every age. Every child will go through a time when he challenges authority. Understand that this happens, but never tolerate the behavior that accompanies it. Help them work through this time in their life with patience.

Put family first. Do not create or cultivate the lie that the child comes first. If you do this, then the child will become self-centered, egotistical and disrespectful. Children need love, affection, a sense of belonging and direction from adults within the family environment, not weakness, inconsistency and permissive parenting.

As Dr. Leonard Sax recommends: “Prioritize the family. The family meal at home is more important than piling on after-school extracurricular activities. Instead of boosting self-esteem, teach humility.” With this in mind, strategize to undermine selfishness; no one is the center of the universe except Our Lord Jesus Christ. Make sure that this is clear, above all through your actions.

 

4 – Beware of the “Parenting Trap” (this point is specifically for parents)

Our modern society emphasizes that being ”liked” is one of the ultimate goals in life. This undermines a fundamental aspect of parenting, as many parents today abandon their mission and their duties just so they can be liked by their children.

Parents are not called by God to be their child's friend.

So what are they called to do?

Parents are called by God to:

  • raise their children and place their children's feet on the path that leads to Heaven.
  • teach their children the True Faith and how to live a life of virtue.
  • educate, to form, to teach, to guide, to support, to love, to defend, to discipline, and to care for their children in all things.
  • accept a full-time responsibility that is rich with blessings and tempered by sorrows.


Parents are not called by God to be their child's buddy. Trying to become their child's buddy will undermine parents' respectability. Children need to be able to admire and respect their parents, not have them as buddies.

This does not mean that it is wrong for parents and children to be friends. In fact, it is a true blessing when parents and children form true friendships. It is wrong and harmful, however, for parents to sacrifice their mission as parents just so they can be liked by their children and be their children's friend.

 

The great challenge:

Isn’t it about time that we stop following the beat of the drum of a culture that teaches tolerance of all that is evil and disregard for all that is good? Isn’t it high time that you and I become true reflections of Our Lord Jesus Christ to those around us, especially the children in our lives? Why not set a higher standard than mediocrity and complacency? Let us honor and respect God above all things, let us make ourselves respectable and let us give and require respect so children will also learn how to respect God.

 


 

 Best Family Tip Banner

 

 

Quote of the day

DAILY QUOTE for July 5, 2020

Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do...

read link

July 5

 

Excellence is an art won by training and habituation.
We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence,
but we rather have those because we have acted rightly.
We are what we repeatedly do.
Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.

Aristotle


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

Saint of the day

SAINT OF THE DAY

St. Elizabeth of Portugal

Her goodness went as far as raising her husband’s illegiti...

read link

St. Elizabeth of Portugal

Elizabeth of Portugal known as “The Holy Queen” was born Isabel of Aragon in Zaragoza, Spain, the daughter of King Pedro III of Aragon and Queen Constanza of Naples. She was named after her great aunt, St. Elizabeth of Hungary.

From childhood, having received a most Christian upbringing, she learned to practice self-discipline, mortification of wayward tendencies, the avoidance of sin and the pursuit of virtue, prayer and union with God’s holy will.

Beautiful, talented and good, she was sought in marriage by several European monarchs, and was ultimately betrothed by proxy at the age of thirteen to King Dinis of Portugal.

A year and a half later she arrived in Portugal to assume her responsibilities as queen. Although he was an able ruler, her husband had an irate temper and sinful habits. While he respected and revered his queen, he was unfaithful to her and had several illegitimate children.

Elizabeth bore the conjugal betrayal with exquisite patience and heroic magnanimity, praying continuously for her wayward spouse. She and Dinis had two children: Constanza and Alfonso.

The young queen started her day with Mass and prayer, and then proceeded to see to the governance of her palace. In the free moments she sewed and embroidered with her ladies for the poor, and personally tended to their needs. Afternoons were dedicated to the care of the elderly, the poor or anyone else in want.

Amazingly talented, Elizabeth mastered several languages, sang beautifully, and enjoyed a remarkable understanding of engineering and architecture. She herself designed and oversaw the building of several churches, monasteries and hospitals, developing her own “Elizabethan Style.”

One day while inspecting a construction site, a girl approached and gave her a bouquet of flowers. The queen then distributed the flowers, one to each of the workers saying: “Let’s see if today you will work hard and well for this pay.” The men reverently placed their flower each in his own satchel, only to find, at the end of the day, a gold coin in place of the flower.

In her city Elizabeth built hostels for the poor, a hospital, a house for repentant wayward women, a free school for girls, and a hospice for abandoned children. She built bridges in dangerous places, visited and procured doctors for the ill, and endowed poor girls for the convent or for marriage. She kept a beautiful tiara and wedding dress to lend to poor brides so they could “shine” or their special day. Her goodness went as far as raising her husband’s illegitimate children.

A great devotee of the Immaculate Conception of Mary Most Holy centuries before the dogma was declared; she obtained from the bishop of Coimbra the establishment of the feast of the Immaculate Conception on December 8, which was afterwards observed with great solemnity throughout the whole country.

A constant peacemaker, the holy queen ironed out many a conflict between bellicose rulers and nobles. Twice she reconciled her husband and son, on one occasion, even interposing her person between them in the battlefield.
In the end, Dinis died a most repentant man. In one of his poems he left his ultimate tribute to his ultimate queen:

God made you without peer
In goodness of heart and speech
As your equal does not exist,
My love, my lady, I thus sing:
Had God so wished,
You’d made a great king.  

After her husband’s death, Elizabeth took the habit of a Franciscan Tertiary and retired near a convent of Poor Clares which she had built, dedicating herself to the sick and the poor.

The saintly queen died at age sixty-five invoking Our Lady, and was canonized in 1625 by Pope Urban VIII who had vowed not to canonize anyone during his pontificate. He made the exception for Elizabeth at being promptly healed of a serious illness after praying to her.

Weekly Story

WEEKLY STORY

The young men began to boast of some foolish love affairs. N...

read link

A Young Man and His Lady Love

In twelfth century England, a group of young men had gathered and were bragging of their various feats, as young men have done since the beginning of time.

The lively conversation went from archery to sword fighting to horsemanship, each trying to outdo the accomplishments of the others.

Finally, the young men began to boast of some foolish love affairs. Not to be outdone by his peers, a noble youth named Thomas declared that he, too, loved a great lady, and was beloved by her.

Thomas of Canterbury meant the most holy Virgin as the object of his affection, but afterwards, he felt some remorse at having made this boast. He did not want to offend his beloved Lady in any way.

Seeing all from her throne in heaven, Mary appeared to him in his trouble, and with a gracious sweetness said to him: "Thomas, what do you fear? You had reason to say that you loved me, and that you are beloved by me. Assure your companions of this, and as a pledge of the love I bear you, show them this gift that I make you."

The gift was a small box, containing a chasuble, blood-red in color. Mary, for the love she bore him, had obtained for him the grace to be a priest and a martyr, which indeed happened, for he was first made priest and afterwards Bishop of Canterbury, in England.

Many years later, he would indeed be persecuted by the king, and Thomas fled to the Cistercian monastery at Pontignac, in France.

Far from kith and kin, but never far from his Lady Love, he was attempting to mend his hair-cloth shirt that he usually wore and had ripped. Not being able to do it well, his beloved queen appeared to him, and, with special kindness, took the haircloth from his hand, and repaired it as it should be done.

After this, at the age of 50, he returned to Canterbury and died a martyr, having been put to death on account of his zeal for the Church.

From the Glories of Mary, by St. Alphonsus Maria de Liguori.

The young men began to boast of some foolish love affairs. Not to be outdone by his peers, a noble youth named Thomas declared that he, too, loved a great lady, and was beloved by her.

Let’s keep in touch!