Young People and the Church
Author: Staff | Source: Catholic.net
Young people are the salt of the world and the light of the Earth. The Church needs their participation to stay alive and current, so it’s extremely important to know how to get our children into the active life of the church.
So here I leave my 5 Tips for our children, especially young people, to participate actively in the life of the church.
1. Encourage love for the church
We must teach our children love in matters of God, the church and the activities that lead them to God. It’s important to do it with our example, is good that our children see that we love the church and that it is not a shame. It’s necessary for our children to live in an environment of respect and love to God and church’s matters, so they will learn to have a place in their hearts and in their daily lives for them.
2. The sooner the better
Yes, it’s better to start taking them to church from a young age and to invite them to participate in the activities that are offered, always according to their age.In the parishes there are always activities for the children, according to their age. For example, if our children are young, surely there’ll be a chorus, a youth group, workshops or some other activity that suits their age, charisma and skills.
At the beginning, is difficult for children of any given age to want to go by their own will, so we need to lead them, but little by little they’ll understand the dynamic and then it’ll be easier for them to go on their own.
3. Start small
“Who is faithful in the little, will be faithful in the big” ... that's why it's good to start with a small commitment.
If our children are little, they may be attending catechesis or being altar boys, but if they are young, they better start to get closer to the confession and then to some worship group or a youth group to have contact with other young people. It’s good to participate little by little in the activities of the Church, until they participate more actively.
4. Find the right place
Our parish is the most advisable place but if it’s not the right one, we must look for the right place in terms of the time or the interests of our children. Especially young people who are often more special and need to feel good and in comfort. The idea behind this is that young people need spaces and moments to live in community and to have a suitable church environment, surrounded by other young people who have the same call.
5. Support them in their activities
Our children are often already happy and working in their youth group and we are the ones who hold them back or make it difficult for them because we don’t understand their activities or because we don’t give them permission to attend. It’s important to be aware of what they do and who they’re with, but as far as apostolic activities are concerned, we shouldn’t punish them, these activities cannot be something to negotiate. Of course, they must make merits to attend their activities, but we shouldn’t punish them by removing the possibility of attending.
The participation of a young person in the active life of the church is a grace and a blessing, that’s why we must thank God and pray that this disposition continues to grow.
Our church needs brave young people who are willing to testify love, fidelity and commitment.