Getting Parents Involved as Primary Educators
Pope Paul VI proclaimed the single deepest need of any culture of life: “At different moments in the Church’s history and also in the Second Vatican Council, the family has well deserved the beautiful name of ‘domestic Church.’ This means that there should be found in every Christian family the various aspects of the entire Church. Furthermore, the family, like the Church, ought to be a place where the Gospel is transmitted and from which the Gospel radiates. In a family which is conscious of this mission, all the members evangelize and are evangelized. The parents not only communicate the Gospel to their children, but from their children they can themselves receive the same Gospel as deeply lived by them. And such a family becomes the evangelizer of many other families, and of the neighborhood of which it forms a part” (EN 71). What does a parent as primary educator look like? This workshop considers the apostolic call upon parents inherent upon the Baptism of their children, examine its practical implications and suggest applications for those who direct or teach in religious education programs. When parents have their children baptized, they promise to raise them in the Catholic faith. This has always been a very challenging task, but in today’s society it is even more difficult because of the complexities of family life. This workshop explores our culture and its values, and how we as Church can affirm and support parents in their role.