Hello again Mom and Dad, this week we are diving a little bit deeper into Halloween and what happens around this time of year. So last week Jennifer talked to you guys about souls and this week I’m going to talk more about death. This is a topic that I guarantee your kids think about and your kids are worried about because their exposure to death is typically surrounding a crisis, whether it was a family member or friend who has passed away. So their association with death is usually negative.
Jennifer talked to us last week about our innate fear of death. Our soul and our body is separated at death and that’s not how it was meant to be. So if we’re not supposed to be afraid of death, why this innate fear?
In Romans 6:23, we hear “for the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus.” So we earned death, if you will, by our sins. And we do that almost every day. But Christ on the cross gave us the gift of eternal life. So even though we all die and our souls are separated from our bodies, we know that that eternal life is coming. We know that they will be joined back together.
How do we get our kids not to be afraid of death? First, talk to them about Jesus. Let them know who Jesus is, that He loves them, and He wants to be with them forever. Beyond that, make them more familiar with death. One of the corporal works of mercy is to bury the dead. This isn’t just your loved ones. This is anyone. When you hear the priest announce that someone passed away recently, and their rosary is on a certain day… what if your family went and prayed for them? Exercise that corporal work of mercy to bury the dead.
One of the things we need to focus on as parents is that eternal aspect of how we’re made. We’re made to be with God forever.
I had an experience just recently where my son was invited by the pastor to come and altar serve at a funeral. This was during school, and it’s a Catholic school, so it was able to happen. I didn’t know this happened, but that night at the dinner table my son was beaming. He said, “I got picked to be an altar server at a funeral mass.” And then he started to tell me about this person’s life. “Dad, did you know that this person had so many kids?” “Did you this person did this or that?” I thought, wow. I could never teach him this. He had to experience that. I asked him how he exercised the corporal works of mercy here, and he said, “Dad, I helped bury the dead.”
How cool is that? My son, in that aspect, is not going to associate death with a real big negative experience. One of the things we need to focus on as parents is that eternal aspect of how we’re made. We’re made to be with God forever. Even though death separates our body and our soul, we’re made to be joined together at the fullness of time. At the fullness of time, Christ will come and we will be together.
Express this to your kids! Help them to learn that we were made for eternity, not just for this earth. Everything that we do on this earth helps us to decide where we go after we die. Christ Jesus came to give us life! Life eternal.
We’ll see you next week!