Gleanings from Orthodox Christian Authors and the Holy Fathers

children

8 Entries

Have great care of your children. We live at a time when much freedom is given to the expression of thought, but little care is taken that thoughts should be founded on truth. Teach them to love truth. Elder Macarius of Optina



He that teacheth his son grieveth the enemy: and before his friends he shall rejoice of him. Ecclesiasticus 30:3

If artists who make statues and paint portraits of kings are held in high esteem, will not God bless ten thousand times more those who reveal and beautify His royal image (for man is the image of God)? When we teach our children to be good, to be gentle, to be forgiving (all these are attributes of God), to be generous, to love their fellow men, to regard this present age as nothing, we install virtue in their souls, and reveal the image of God within them. This, then, is our task: to educate both ourselves and our children in godliness; otherwise what answer will we have before Christ's judgment-seat?....Let us be greatly concerned for our wives and our children, and for ourselves as well...The good God Himself will bring this work to perfection, so that all of us may be counted worthy of the blessings He has promised.. St John Chrysostom Homily 21

Let those of us with children give heed to their upbringing, and, in general, let everyone have an interest in those they live with and regard their neighbor's welfare as their own greatest asset, so that each person may be instructed in the way of virtue and thus succeed in avoiding an experience of evil, and, by opting for virtue, win much favor from on high. May it be the good fortune of us all to attain this, thanks to the grace and loving kindness of our Lord Jesus Christ. St. John Chrysostom, Homilies on Genesis, Vol. III

Many teach their children about worldly politics, others teach them to speak foreign languages: French, German, Italian, and in this spend no trifling sums. Others endeavor to teach them commerce and other arts. But hardly anyone teaches them to live in a Christian manner. However, without this, all learning is nothing and all wisdom is madness. For what does it profit a Christian to speak Italian, French and German, if he lives in an ungodly manner? What use is it to be skilled in commerce and the arts if one lacks the fear of God? God will not ask you whether you taught your children French, German or Italian or the politics of social life--but you will not escape divine reprobation for not having instilled goodness into them. I speak plainly but I tell the truth: if your children are bad, your grandchildren will be worse, and the evil will thus increase...and the root of all this is our thoroughly bad education St. Tikhon of Zadonsk

First give your children virtue as an inheritance and then distribute your estate also. REF:Saint Basil the Great

The simplest means for confining the will within its proper bounds lies in disposing children to do nothing without permission. Let them be eager to run to their parents and ask: May I do this or that? They should be persuaded by their own experience and that of others that to fulfill their own desires without asking is dangerous; they should be put in such a frame of mind that they even fear their own will. REF:St Theophan the Recluse, "The Path to Salvation" p 58

One must on no account give children books with corrupt concepts; their minds will thus be preserved whole, in holy and divine healthiness. REF:St Theophan the Recluse, "The Path to Salvation" p 57





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