Church

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-02-2007
Church
5
Sat, 01-05-2013 - 4:39am

Hi, I'd like to take my son to mass this Sunday, but it's always a battle.  He hates going because he says it's boring.  He is 9 and has already been to religious studies class and made his first communion.  Does anyone have any tips/advice.  Thanks.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-23-2001
In reply to: goddessmommy1
Mon, 01-07-2013 - 8:28am
Get your priest involved and talk to him with your ds, Is he at an age to altar serve? Remind him that the one hour is an obligation once a week and that the "chore" is necessary... My DS just turned 10 and he's been altar serving since second grade, I get the remarks about not wanting to go to church and all too but he's much more engaged when he's up there serving. Our priest is both kid friendly and old school, He picks up on cues and meets kids where they're at as there are some times when my Daniel drags himself in there to serve, Fr.R will crack jokes but he's strict and expects a lot too... Good luck, Is there a routine or tradition you can create for afterwards too? Perhaps breakfast or dinner if it's an afternoon mass?

 


 


iVillage Member
Registered: 04-07-2002
In reply to: goddessmommy1
Tue, 01-08-2013 - 12:38pm

I'm not a parent so I might be the wrong one to ask, but let me offer you my perspective anyway.  I also hated mass at his age- I just couldn't relate.  In fact, I was relieved when they came looking for altar servers and at that time only boys could do it.  Nowadays I'm the opposite- in a lot of ways, I'm a fanatic in fact.

I couldn't help but notice that one thing that has changed now over when I was 9 is that now there are "family" masses with separate children's liturgies.  When my sister's kids were little I went to a children's liturgy with them.  Let me tell you, I would have thought differently about mass if they had those when I was little.  Here was spiritual instruction I would have understood in elementary school- even more so than the CCD classes i had then.  If I can suggest anything, it would be to find one of these masses with children's liturgies to attend if possible.

Good luck, and remember, the real battle for a kid's soul most likely starts when the kid enters college!

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-23-2001
In reply to: goddessmommy1
Wed, 01-09-2013 - 8:42am
Your perspective is a good one Beth and it reminds me of when we first moved here, DD2 was 11 or 12 and she would give us a fit about going to church. It was upsetting to me b/c her older sister was nothing like that, I eventually took it up with the parish nun (who is nolonger here) and her advice, too spoke volumes about how kids at this age/stage are trying to wrap their heads around the "reason"/logic of it all... Haha about college years, That's probably when I started really questioning my church, I continued to go to mass but when I met DH who was a practicing Presbyterian at the time I really began to learn a lot about church/es general.

 


 


iVillage Member
Registered: 09-07-2000
In reply to: goddessmommy1
Thu, 01-17-2013 - 10:10am

I think the other ladies gave you some good advice.  I have a problem wanting to get ME to mass.  I don't like our parish.  I don't feel at home there, I don't care for our priest, the atmosphere is off-putting, and it's just an overall struggle each and every week.  The only reason we are members there is because DS attends school there, so we get a tuition break.  We really can't afford to be members at another parish, so we are stuck.  DS doesn't mind going.  He's 8. 

Do you have mass at other times on Sunday that he might be more comfortable attending?  For us, the evening mass seems to go by the quickest so it's usually less than 45 minutes.

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-26-2000
In reply to: goddessmommy1
Sat, 02-09-2013 - 1:13pm

First of all, if he has already made his First Communion, then he has an obligation to attend Mass every week and to participate standing, kneeling, sitting, listening - not sleep, not read a book, and not play on his Gameboy.  (Not saying that you allow this, but I have seen some...)  It is not negotiable, and it really doesn't matter if he wants to or not.  Or if it is boring or not.  Part of life - doing things that he may not really feel like doing.  

When my children were little (pre-schoolers) we were slacker-Catholics.  Once we made the decision that we were going to do this right, there is NOTHING that stands in the way of attendance at Sunday Mass other than serious, contagious illness.  It doesn't matter if if they have been camping with the Boy Scouts all weekend and got home just in time to make 6pm Mass in the next town or if we have tickets for Disney World.  Mass happens and they accept this.  

You can do a few things to help this.  First of all, if you have a choice of Masses or parishes - look for one that is kid-friendly.  It might be the music or it might be a priest that keeps things short and sweet or it might be a Mass where Father speaks directly to the kids for a few minutes.  

Help him to realize who it is that we receive at Mass; who is actually there with us.  Yep, Jesus Himself - truly present - not some cheap imitation, not some symbol.  Remind him of the sacrifice Jesus made for us, and that he commands us to do this for Him.  

Read the readings of the Mass with him before Mass.  You can find them on the internet on usccb website.  Make a game of it to try to figure out what Father will talk about during the homily.  

When my kids were much younger (they are now 16 and 17), good behavior at Mass = a kids' meal at McD's or BK after Mass.  Use it if you need to.  When they got older, we would often celebrate Confession with ice cream or a milkshake.  

If he has made his First Communion, he would be eligible to altar serve at our Parish.  Check into that.  When you are an active participant, things seem to go by faster, and a personal connection with the priest can help make it more interesting on weekends when he's not serving.

Good luck!  This is part of your job as a Catholic Parent - Making sure that he has the opportunity to receive Jesus in the Eucharist and God's Mercy in the sacrament of Reconciliation.  Talk to God's momma.  Ask her to help!

Karen 

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