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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.

 


 

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Quote of the day

DAILY QUOTE for December 2, 2020

A society that needs healing and regeneration will receive i...

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December 2

 

A society that needs healing and regeneration will receive it mostly
from the innocent.
The pure can look on the impure without contempt.
It was Divine Innocence Who asked of a sinful woman:
Where are they who accused you?” (John 8:10)

Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen


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Saint of the day

SAINT OF THE DAY

St. Chromatius of Aquileia

Empress Aelia Eudoxia resented Chrysostom’s denouncements...

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St. Chromatius of Aquileia

Chromatius was brought up in the city of Aquileia, at the head of the Adriatic Sea. In all likelihood, he was probably born here as well. His father died when he was young, and he lived with his widowed mother, older brother and unmarried sisters. His mother had the good opinion of St. Jerome, which the saint expressed in a letter to her in 374. His brother also became a bishop.

After his ordination, Chromatius took part in the synod against Arianism in 381. Later, as bishop, he rooted Arianism out of his diocese.

He baptized the monk, theologian, and historian, Rufinus in his early manhood.

On the death of St. Valerian in 388, Chromatius was elected bishop of Aquileia, and became one of the most distinguished prelates of his time.

Situated at one of the busiest crossroads of the Roman Empire, Aquileia was a major center of trade and commerce. Under Chromatius' care, guidance and influence it also became renowned as a center of learning and orthodoxy.

He kept up an extensive correspondence with both Sts. Ambrose and Jerome and also with Rufinus.  A scholarly theologian himself, Chromatius encouraged the Bishop of Milan to write exegetical works, and St. Jerome in his own writings. He helped St. Heliodorus of Altino to finance St. Jerome’s translation of the Bible.  It was also owing to Chromatius’ encouragement that Rufinus undertook the translation of Eusebius’ Ecclesiastical History and other works.

He acted as mediator in a dispute that arose between St. Jerome and Rufinus concerning the writings of Origen. He also wrote to Emperor Honorius in defense of St. John Chrysostom, Bishop of Constantinople, over his troubles with the bishop of Alexandria and the Empress Aelia Eudoxia, who resented Chrysostom’s denouncements of extravagance. Though Honorius wrote to his brother Emperor Arcadius in Constantinople, the intervention had no effect.

Chromatius was also an active exegete. Seventeen of his treatises on St. Matthew’s Gospel survive, as well as a fine homily on the Eight Beatitudes. Chromatius died about the year 407.

Photo Credit: GFreihalter

Weekly Story

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Whoever recites this prayer fifteen times a day from the fea...

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A Christmas Prayer

(It is piously believed that whoever recites the below prayer fifteen times a day from the feast of St. Andrew the Apostle (Patron of Scotland; 30th Nov.) until Christmas will obtain what is asked.)

America Needs Fatima also believes it's pleasing and efficacious any time of the year.

Click the image to download it.

 

Whoever recites this prayer fifteen times a day from the feast of St. Andrew the Apostle (30th Nov.) until Christmas will obtain what is asked.

 

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