Historically the Rosary is a simple alternative to the Liturgy of the Hours. If you couldn’t read or afford the book, these prayers allowed for the lay or common man to enter into contemplative, daily prayer reflecting over the life of Christ. Right now, three-fifths of my house cannot read. Yes, they enjoy being read to and have a better grasp of Scripture at 4 years old than I had at 18, but there is something powerful in being able to pray at the same level as Mommy and Daddy, the same prayers in the same way.
Now let’s clarify we have a four-year-old, almost 2-year-old, and a 2-month old, so our house is anything but quiet, still, and contemplative. They are incredible and bring significant meaning to my life, but honestly, most moments are chaos! So how do we bring joy into the crazy, and incorporate prayer into our family life?
Raising Catholic Kids
When we got married, this was one of our biggest concerns. We both didn’t come from religious families or a strong foundation of Biblical or Church teachings. Family prayer wasn’t a thing, so how were we to do something we hadn’t experienced?
Although I have much to learn and am growing daily and being sanctified through these little ones, over the last nine years of marriage and five years of motherhood, I have learned that your example speaks volumes! It is through my prayer life, the way I talk, handle overwhelming situations, and live that matters. They do what you do, not what you say to do. They mimic and learn from your example and witness. Not every moment will be perfect, but they will see our effort to love them, our God, and each other.
You are not a failure if you have not been praying the Rosary as a family. Just choosing to open this article and read these ideas shows you have a heart for growing in holiness. And when you start if it doesn’t go well, again this is not an indication that you are an incompetent unfaithful family.
When these whispers come in and stop us before we even get started, they are lies from the devil. God loves our joyful chaos, our hot mess trying. He knows we are not perfect. We are merely spiritual children. But he adores our efforts, and each day we get better, stronger, and more faithful. He can make us and our family prayer life new.
Leading Your Family
The Catechism of the Catholic Church in paragraph 2685 states, “The Christian family is the first place of education in prayer. Based on the sacrament of marriage, the family is the “domestic church” where God’s children learn to pray “as the Church” and to persevere in prayer. For young children in particular, daily family prayer is the first witness of the Church’s living memory as awakened patiently by the Holy Spirit.” The Rosary is an incredible tool to create Saints and to take up our responsibility in our domestic mission.
God has given us an amazing responsibility as parents. Our job is to have the overarching vision for our family to get to heaven, and then develop a family culture that helps nurture and grow our children in light of this vision. We can’t force our kids to go to heaven. The best we can do is lead them to heaven. You know a true leader because at the end of the day they are standing right beside you in the journey of attaining that vision.
Why the Rosary Is the Perfect Family Prayer
Again it doesn’t require reading, and you can memorize all the prayers at a very young age. Yet, these prayers and especially the mysteries tell a story. It is familiar, repetitive, and always accessible no matter where you are. It’s a gateway to Scripture and a deep relationship with Christ. There is great power in the Rosary, especially in praying it as a family!
Check out our favorite Catholic kid resources here: https://kit.co/totheheightsministry/raise-your-kids-catholic and our favorite Rosary specific resources here: https://kit.co/totheheightsministry/rosaries
In this video, we break down our Top 7 tips for praying a Family Rosary! Make sure you listen until tip seven because it’s the most important one!