Your number one goal as a parent is to get your children to heaven. You child’s soul is on the line, and the stakes are high. So how do you get it done?
Marcel LeJeune, Catholic speaker and evangelist, joined Morning Air® to provide some advice for parent who are working to ensure their family’s eternal salvation. He shared what he sees as the first step in getting your kids to heaven.
“The first thing I do is probably mess up, just like every human father does, and then have to rely on the Eternal Father in heaven who has to fix all my mistakes by his grace,” he laughed. “And that’s our greatest hope right there! We’re not in this alone and that’s the big thing we need to remember. God wants our kids and our grandkids to go to heaven more than we ever could and so he’s working harder than we are! And I think the first thing we need to do is have faith and hope that God is doing that; he’s working to get people to heaven.”
Parents today are facing more than ever as they combat the culture in the battle for sainthood. “There are so many things that pound at the heart and mind of our kids, of our young people. And it’s difficult because the vast majority of young people are growing up and have no faith,” said LeJeune.
What’s the antidote to peer pressure and the desire to fit in with friends and the culture? “Parents have to love our kids with everything they have. And not just that feeling in the heart but with actions and words and a strategy of how do I help my kid come to make a decision day in and day out that they’re going to follow Jesus and not what the world says.”
You can (and should) pray with your kids, introduce them to the sacraments, and encourage them in their faith. But here’s the thing: you can’t force them to have a strong faith.
When LeJeune worked in youth ministry and distressed parents called for advice, he used to tell them, “You’re worried about them. You want something for them. And yet they have this thing that really bothers all of us and that’s called free will. … So we need to make sure that we’re in a good place knowing that the Father in heaven is loving us and our kids right where they are, and he wants to work with us to try to evangelize these kids.”
Behind the ultimate goal of getting your kids to heaven, LeJeune says that your second goal is not to get your fallen-away kids to Mass, but to open up lines of communication with them. “Have conversations and have a relationship whereby I can start to win the right to evangelize them.”
Ask big questions, listen (given them room to answer rather than giving them answers), and try to assess their spiritual growth and where they are coming from. The key is to stop trying to be in control and to leave room for God to work in our kids and through us to get them to heaven.
For more advice from Marcel LeJeune, listen to the full segment:
For more on Catholic Parenthood, read about Praying for Your Kids.
Tune in to Morning Air® weekdays at 5-8am CT only on Relevant Radio®.