How to Be the Spiritual Head of Your Household

A husband’s role in a family is to lead his wife and children to God. This concept has been lost for many families in today’s society, but the truth remains that a man should embrace the role as a spiritual head of the household.

Jacob called from Maine, explaining that he was married last year and as a newlywed, he feels unprepared to be a spiritual leader in his household. He didn’t have a great example of this growing up, and asked Patrick Madrid to share some advice.

Being a spiritual leader doesn’t mean that a man can be tyrannical or domineering over his wife, ignoring the role that she also plays in the spiritual life of the family. As Patrick reminds us, “The two of you are equal in God’s eyes, but you have a role to play as the head.” This example is seen in Adam and Eve, or the relationship between Christ and His bride, the Church.

Simply put, this means that you make God the center of your family. “You and your wife, presumably, are on the same page on this, so it’s not like you have to drag her along or anything like that. But the two of you together are making your home a little sanctuary, a little manger for Baby Jesus to come and be present in your home,” said Patrick.

What are some simple and practical ways this could be lived out?

  • Make sure you have a crucifix and an image of Jesus in your home.
  • Prayer before meals
  • Praying a family rosary, if possible
  • Bringing your family to Mass on Sundays
  • Ensure that your children are baptized in a timely manner and receive their sacraments

Dad and daughter study scriptureWhen children enter the picture, it is your responsibility to raise them in the Faith from birth. “It doesn’t mean you have to lecture them, but live the Faith for them, model the Faith, show them that you and your wife love Jesus. Show them why the sacraments and prayer are so important and then they will grow into it as they reach the age where they can begin to learn about that,” explained Patrick.

As a spiritual leader of your home, a husband’s primary job is to lead his wife in faith. It is your role to help her get to heaven, and as her husband you have been entrusted with her eternal salvation.

“Your whole married life should be focused on, Lord what can I do to help my wife grow in holiness and help her get to heaven. Maybe your wife is holier than you are, maybe not. But if you are devoted to serving her spiritually and in all other ways, then you will be helping fulfill that role,” Patrick said.

Saint Joseph is the ultimate example of being a spiritual head of his household. He defended, protected, provided for, and cared for the Holy Family both spiritually and physically.

St. Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary and Foster Father of Jesus, pray for us!


Tune in to The Patrick Madrid Show weekdays at 8-11am CT only on Relevant Radio®.

Lindsey Kettner serves as a Digital Media Producer at Relevant Radio®. She is a wife, mother, and graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where she studied journalism and advertising. She writes daily at relevantradio.com and on the free Relevant Radio mobile app.