Easter 4A

3 New Essays Every Week

Family and Children

Easter 4A

Family and Children, Sunday Readings, Catholic

Family and Children, Sunday Readings, Catholic

Family and Children, Sunday Readings, Catholic

Family and Children, Sunday Readings, Catholic

Family and Children, Sunday Readings, Catholic

Parents as Shepherds

Family and Children

In the Gospel of John, Chapter 10, verses 1-10, Jesus speaks of Himself as the Good Shepherd, who enters into the sheepfold (Jewish community) through the only way (Himself) and leads His sheep (believers) to green pastures (eternal life). While this passage may not explicitly mention family and children, it is not difficult to draw parallels between the role of Jesus as the Good Shepherd and the role of parents as shepherds of their families.


Just as a shepherd looks after his sheep and ensures their well-being, parents are responsible for the care and well-being of their children. They are the ones who guide their children to become independent and self-sufficient individuals, just as Jesus leads His believers to eternal life.

In John 10:3, Jesus states that the shepherd calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. Similarly, parents know their children by name and are charged with leading them to lead fulfilling lives.

Furthermore, in John 10:4, we read that the sheep follow the shepherd because they recognize his voice. Similarly, children naturally follow the instructions and guidance of their parents because they trust their leadership and know their parents’ voice.


However, in John 10:5, Jesus warns that strangers who come into the sheepfold under the guise of leadership will be rejected by the sheep. This can be seen as a warning for parents to be vigilant and discerning in who they allow to have an impact in their children’s lives. It is important for parents to discern the company their children keep, the influences they are exposed to, and the values they are taught.

The following verses make it clear that the protection and care of the sheep is a primary concern for the shepherd. Jesus explains that the thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy, whereas the Good Shepherd comes that His sheep may have abundant life (John 10:10).

Similarly, parents should guard their children against anyone who may harm or negatively influence them. Parents are responsible for ensuring that their children have access to good health care, proper nutrition, and safe and nurturing living environments. Additionally, they must be the ones to instill values, virtues, and faith that will guide their children to lead meaningful lives.


In verse 9, Jesus states that He is the door and that anyone who enters through Him will be saved and will find pasture. In the same way, parents have a responsibility to introduce their children to Jesus and facilitate their relationship with Christ. Indeed, this is the ultimate goal of parenting: to raise children who will know Christ and follow Him.

In conclusion, John 10:1-10 reminds us of the ultimate importance of parenting, which is to be a shepherd to our families, guarding and guiding them towards living meaningful and fulfilling lives rooted in faith. Parents are responsible not only for their own children but also for the community around them, following the same ideals of love and care that Jesus exemplified. By doing so, parents can establish a living legacy that passes down through generations, bringing joy to God and His people.

SOURCE: Teaching the Way of Love; Taken from: The Truth and Meaning of Human Sexuality Guidelines For Education Within the Family

The importance of teaching children about faith, repentance, and salvation

Family and Children

Acts 2:36-41 presents an account of Peter’s sermon at Pentecost and the resulting conversion of over three thousand people. While this passage does not specifically address the topic of family and children, it offers insights that are relevant to parenting and family life.

In this passage, Peter exhorts the people to repent and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of their sins, promising that they will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:38).


One of the key lessons from this passage is the importance of teaching children about repentance, forgiveness, and salvation. Parents have a duty to convey the message of the Gospel to their children, just as Peter and the disciples taught the message of Jesus to the people of Jerusalem. Through family devotions, Sunday school, and other forms of religious education, parents should encourage their children to confess their sins, seek God’s mercy, and accept Jesus as their Savior.


Moreover, the passage stresses the significance of baptism in the life of a believer. Baptism symbolizes the cleansing of one’s sins, the expression of faith, and the acknowledgment of one’s belonging to the community of believers.

As such, parents should celebrate with their children the anniversary of their baptism, helping them to understand the significance of this act and the role it plays in their spiritual growth and development.

Furthermore, the passage speaks of the people’s response to Peter’s message, with many of them repenting and receiving baptism (Acts 2:41). This serves as a reminder of the importance of nurturing children’s faith and encouraging them to take an active role in their spiritual journey. As children mature, they should be able to articulate their faith, share their convictions, and commit themselves to serving others in the name of Christ.


Another key lesson from the passage is the idea of community and togetherness. The believers in Jerusalem are described as “devoting themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers” (Acts 2:42).

Parenting involves more than just raising children in a nuclear family. It should involve nurturing kids to have social and relational skills, encouraging them to be a part of a larger faith community. It is through interacting and fellowshipping with other believers, that our children can learn about generosity, humility, service, and the spiritual practices that can shape their lives.


Also, in Acts 2:44, it is stated that the believers share everything in common and that they sell their possessions and distribute the proceeds to all the people in the community who were in need. Parenting is not solely concerned about family financial provisions, but also laying the foundation for children’s philanthropy and philanthropic values.

It is important for parents to teach children the virtue of giving and the call to serve others as the early believers did, demonstrating the love of Christ through selflessness and generosity.


Lastly, the passage speaks of the joy and awe that filled the hearts of the people, as they witnessed the miraculous events and the outpouring of the Spirit. Similarly, parenting should involve cultivating an environment of joy and awe, allowing children to thrive emotionally, intellectually and physically.

Encouraging children to explore the world around them, appreciate nature, art music and other cultural experiences can open their eyes with a sense of wonder and provide a positive mental and social environment for them to excel.

In summary, Acts 2:36-41 offers guidance on various aspects of parenting and family life. The importance of teaching children about faith, repentance, and salvation cannot be overemphasized. Baptism offers a tangible expression of faith, and participating in a community of believers offers an opportunity to be engaged with social and philanthropic efforts.

Parenting is a spiritual calling that requires humility, wisdom, and deep compassion

Family and Children

In 1 Peter 2:20-25, Peter encourages his readers to endure suffering and follow the example of Christ, who suffered for them but did not retaliate or seek revenge. Though this passage does not explicitly mention family and children, there are ways in which it speaks to the experiences and concerns of parents and families.


One of the key themes of the passage is the idea of submission to authority. Peter states that it is commendable if someone endures pain and hardship “while suffering unjustly” because they are conscious and respectful of God (verse 19-20).

As parents, it is our duty to teach our children about respect for authority, including recognizing the authority of God and government officials. We must instill in our children a sense of responsibility and accountability, encouraging them to respect and obey their teachers, caregivers, and other authorities in their lives. By doing so, we set a positive example, teaching our children that submission to authority can be an act of faith and service to God.


Moreover, the passage highlights the concept of forgiveness. Jesus, who faced unimaginable suffering on behalf of sins He did not commit, forgave His persecutors, and called for His followers to do the same.

Forgiveness is an essential aspect of family life, especially in moments of disagreement or conflict. As parents, we should model forgiveness and teach our children to forgive others, recognizing that this can help them to experience healing and peace in their relationships.


Another central theme of the passage is that of suffering, which is something that all people experience at some point in their lives. Suffering can take many different forms, from physical pain to emotional stress.

Parenting itself is an act of sacrifice and involves some elements of physical and psychological suffering; the stress that comes with responsibility, sleepless nights, and the challenges of raising children are considerable.

We must encourage our children to express themselves, to speak out against mistreatment and to seek support when going through difficult situations. We must also let our children know that it is always okay to seek guidance through prayers and other spiritual practices.


Finally, the passage speaks of the redemptive work of Christ, who suffered and died to bring salvation to humanity. Peter states that “he himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sin and live for righteousness” (verse 24).

As parents, we need to rely on this truth to teach our children about the sacrifice of Christ and its far-reaching implications for their lives. Children should learn that through our faith in Christ, they are called to join with Holy Spirit to help make their homes, communities, and relationships better.

They must understand that there is redemption and healing through Christ’s sacrifice, empowering them to become agents of love, forgiveness, and justice wherever they go.

In summary, 1 Peter 2:20-25 speaks to various issues connected with family and children. It invites us to model respect for authority, teach forgiveness, recognize suffering as a natural part of life, and teach about the redemptive work of Christ. Parents have a responsibility to instruct their children about these values, and to model them in their daily lives.


Family and Children
Going Deeper
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