Sacraments are not defined ONLY as the 7 rituals used in the Catholic Church to signify the grace of God. Sacraments are a visible sign of an invisible grace. They are there to bring us closer to the presence of God in our world and our lives.
We are created in the image of God. We are a visible sign of God's grace in this world. We have forgotten or not been told that we are sacred. There are so many people who doubt and have little to no faith that faith is not being passed down to people. If you do not know God created you in his image with human dignity, self-worth, that cannot be taken away, then you do not realize how very sacred you are.
Many children only think they are important because a parent loves them. Until that parent tells them about God, they will never understand how loved they truly are. The love of God is deeper and more significant than any love that can be given to us on this earth. God breathed life into each one of us so that we might love him, ourselves, one another and nature. We should be in relationship, in community with each other. When we close the door of faith to others how will they ever know how loved, worthy, and good they truly are.
I know it is not politically correct to say every child should be taught about God. But I am making the statement! Every child should be taught about God. If I hear one more parent say, "I am not going to raise my child in a religion. I want them to have the freedom to pick their own," and that parent does not take that child to any church, talk to them about any religion, or study with them about any faith life, I may go crazy! How is that child going to pick a religion when they have absolutely no foundation for learning about it? Why would they have any interest in this idea at all?
As parents we have a responsibility to raise our children to be educated, responsible citizens, meaning they need to learn how to help one another and be in relationship with others. How can they truly care for others if they do not know they have been created by something greater than humanity? That they are loved beyond measure and have a purpose in this life beyond making money and buying things!
They should know, regardless of which religion they are brought up in, that a higher being created them for a purpose beyond just this earthly dwelling place. Maybe if this happened we would have less individualism, less violence, injustice, suicide, and more love, peace, kindness, and care for others.
We are sacramental! Unless we carry on the teachings, our faith, and our beliefs how will others know that they are signs of God's grace in the world? We need to give our children the opportunity to sincerely know God. If they decide to reject Him then that is their choice but we are responsible for giving all that we have to our children. If we miss this chance we have done a great disservice not only to our children but our community, and our world. Talk to your children about faith!
Copyright 2015 Lori Hadorn-Disselkamp
Photo: "Chrismation" by Mike (2009) via Flickr. All rights reserved.
About the Author
Lori Hadorn-Disselkamp - mom of 4 teens/wife for 20+ years. Lori has been writing at her own website Faith Filled Mom. She writes about the journey of faith we live daily and the ability to recognize God. She is a retreat director at Sacred Heart Academy HS. She just earned her MA in Pastoral Ministry as well as a certification in spiritual direction.