"In the education of children, the most important thing is..."
>My husband and I pray Morning Prayer every morning. We wanted Dominic, our
> In the education of children, the most important thing is that they should
> see their parents leading an intense interior life. - Fr. Aleksandr,
> "Diary of a Russian Priest"
four year old, to come in and pray with us but he would consistently refuse.
He would rather play with his toys or interrupt our prayers to ask us to do
something for him. We finally got him to wait patiently while we prayed so
that he played by himself quietly in another room. Before we prayed we
always called him and invited him to pray with us. But no, he was not
interested. So it went on in this way for a while.
I began to notice that he would play with his toys closer and closer to the
doorway to the room wherein we prayed. Eventually he would play with his
toys in the same room where we were praying. Finally he would climb up onto
the bed during prayers and stand next to us in front of the icon corner. We
are still awaiting his vocal participation but I'm sure that will come in
As parents we want all the good things for our children. Sometimes in my
enthusiasm I would rather buckle them down with a forced prayer routine.
That hasn't really worked for us... Instead it took a lot of patience and
exemplary consistency, which in turn slowly drew our children closer to
prayer. We had to be a sort of "Prayer Whisperer" and it took a lot of time
and consistency to show Dominic that praying in the morning was something he
*himself* would want to participate in. It was hard for us adults but seeing
the good results, even in mere inches, made it easier to be patient and wait
for them to come on their own. It's so much more pleasing to see your
children pray because they want to rather than pray because you demand it.
*- From The Children of
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