Hello and welcome to Beyond the Pew. Today we’re beginning a conversation on how to live out our faith during the summer time. So many of us see the summer time as a time where we can get away, as taking a break from life, and certainly summer time can be that. But sometimes we tend to lump faith into the same category at school, in that we go to Mass, we take our kids to RE during the school year, but all bets are off during summer. It’s not the same way with our faith.
A Summer Reminder
We don’t just live our faith during the school year where we go to Mass and do the things we’re supposed to do and then take a break during the summer. We’re supposed to continue that relationship. It doesn’t really do our kids any good if we’re consistent during the school year but then fail to make our faith a priority during the summer. So what we need to be doing is to remind our kids and remind ourselves to, that whether we’re on summer vacation, whether we’ve got a million camps to take our kids to, or different activities, that our relationship with God still needs to be a priority. We still need to keep that relationship in the limelight of our life.
Now when we talk to kids about relationship with God, one analogy we like to use is a friendship analogy, where if I have a friend, that friendship only grows if we talk to each other. We hang out. We communicate. It’s the same thing with God that relationship only grows if we’re talking with each other, if we’re communicating with each other, if we’re spending time with one another. But if we stop spending time with one another and stop talking to each other, we’re not going to be friends anymore. And so it’s the same thing with God. If we stop talking to him, we’re not going to know him anymore.
And so during the summer as we take a break from that relationship, we stop making Mass a priority, if we choose to skip Mass when we go on vacation, slowly that relationship starts to dwindle and maintaining a faith during the school year becomes that much more difficult. So we need to encourage our kids, “Hey, having a relationship with your friend is like having that relationship with God.”
Rest and Renewal
And actually over the summer that’s when our kids see their friends probably more. It’s an opportunity to hang out with their friends more. There’s more opportunities for pool parties or sleepovers or whatever it might be and it can be the same with God, where the summer is a time to renew that relationship with him, because we have maybe more time.
There are different things that we can do that we’ll be addressing the next few weeks, we’ll be going into depth on how we can help our kids to maintain that relationship with God over the summer. One thing that is important to do is to be consistent instead of scheduled. Help your kids to maintain that relationship with God or to start one if they haven’t yet. And it is the summer, so you can make it fun and interesting.
One thing that my husband and I have started doing with our baby daughter is we started including her in our night prayer. And because she’s a baby she likes music. She likes to hear us sing. And so we’ve started every night just singing the Ave Maria for her. And it’s so simple; she doesn’t understand it yet, but we’ve begun being consistent with her and it’s something that engages her, singing and music, and engages her. And it will help to connect with her the importance of being consistent, of that every day, every night and it’s engaging. It’s not boring. It’s not forcing her. But she likes it, and so we can be creative in finding ways to engage our kids over the summer.
We’ll dive into more ways on how you can do that over the next few episodes. Hopefully this was helpful, and good luck. And we’ll be praying for you on engaging your kids this summer in our faith. God bless