Raising children – in the world but not of the world – truly this is a magnificent arduous labor – impossible without God
Whether your children attend private school, public school or are homeschooled, one of the best ways to give our children an excellent Orthodox education, is to take them to Church – not just on Sunday mornings, but Vespers and any Festal Liturgy or service that you can attend. An Orthodox catechism begins at Baptism and is hands on : young lives fed by the Sacraments and steadfast timeless seasons of the Church : integrated into the fabric of liturgical life.
Life lived through the Church’s seasonal rhythms seeps into the core of a child’s being. This is the perennial unshakable and fortifying foundation of Truth and Love.
In a world where truth is relative, our children are bombarded with the noise of consumerism peddling false messages of self worth, ephemeral instant gratuity and distorted images of what it means to be fully human, joyful and even content. It’s constant drone it can be alluring.
A parent must “walk circumspectly” in the Faith and “redeem the time:”, while they are yet young. None of us knows whether our child will become one who is part of the increasing numbers of youth leaving the Faith…. and so it is no vain labor to let the Lord build the house (Psalm 127:1) and strive as a family to live the Faith sincerely and wholeheartedly.
“In the education of children, the most important thing is that they should see their parents leading an intense spiritual life.” Father Alexander Elchaninov
Faith is transmitted through parents; it is a living gift of nourishment. Children and especially teenagers and young adults crave Truth and authenticity. Parental devotion to the Lord enables children to love and know their Creator – a thirst quenching, life sustaining relationship. It is a noble goal : striving to live the Greatest Commandment, rearing children in the Faith – through word and deed – bringing them to Church regularly and making that a priority.
It is necessary for everyone to know Scriptural teachings, and this is especially true for children. Even at their age they are exposed to all sorts of folly and bad examples from popular entertainment. Our children need remedies for all these things! We are so concerned with our children’s schooling, if only we were equally zealous in bringing them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.