Every parent’s desire is to see their children grow to be fulfilled and happy in life. If children truly seek and find God’s will for them, their lives will be fulfilled and happy.
"Parents have the mission of teaching their children to pray and to discover their vocation as children of God." (CCC #2226)
"They should encourage them in the vocation which is proper to each child, fostering with special care any religious vocation." (CCC #1656)
The Christian home is the first seminary where virtues such as faith, self-control, obedience, disciplined prayer life, Scripture reading, humility, generosity, and brotherly love are inculcated for the first time by word and example.
From birth to primary level
• Help your children to speak and listen to a loving God. Let them see and hear you pray.
• Pray as a family in the morning, at meals and at bedtime, when you travel, or have special needs.
• Say the rosary and attend Mass as a family.
• Pray that at least one of your children enter the priesthood or the religious life.
• Give your children an age-appropriate Bible and a book about
the saints. Read the stories to them.
• Welcome and support priests, religious and lay ministers in the church.
From secondary school to high school
• Continue to pray together. Invite your children to offer prayers.
• Attend Mass together and encourage them to receive the sacraments of the Eucharist and Confession regularly.
• Pray as a family for vocations and support your diocese’s vocation promotion efforts.
• Provide literature or media about people who have responded to God’s call to serve him.
• Go for pilgrimages to holy places as a family.
• Engage in open and healthy conversations with your children about their hopes and dreams.
• Encourage them to participate in and contribute to parish activities.
From university to young adult
• They are making important decisions about their future. Pray daily that they desire to give their lives in service to God.
• Encourage them to pray, reflect and listen to God’s call and, if heard, to respond generously and courageously.
• Discuss all options for your child’s future, including priesthood and religious life.
• Encourage them to participate in parish ministries and activities.
• If they have indicated interest in the priesthood or religious life, encourage them to attend vocation retreats or to visit religious orders to discern their calling. Help them to find a spiritual director.
Parents’ own faith formation
Don’t be afraid to ask questions and seek answers to build up your own faith by attending faith formation sessions in your parish, Bible study and attending regular renewal retreats. You cannot give to your children what you do not have. Be patient with yourself and your child’s uncertainties and know that God is always present to help you with your call to parenthood.