So often we feel that we are parenting alone. We are trying to raise our children in the ways of Christ, amidst a world that tries to teach them to do whatever they want. We long for guidance; for role models for ourselves and for our children; even for someone to tell us what is the best thing to do in a particular parenting situation.
Truth is, we are not alone. We are simply the current generation of parents trying to raise our children in the ways of Christ in a selfish world. Many others have gone before us: for generations! Among them are the Saints, who are excellent role models for us parents AND for our children. Their lives can show us how to handle tough parenting situations; and their prayers can help us to parent, day by day.
In order to better utilize this resource which God has provided, it is important that we learn more about the saints and teach our children about them, as well. Here are a few resources that we have found helpful, to that end:
http://www.ancientfaith.com/podcasts/saintoftheday is a short podcast (usually a minute or two) describing the life of a saint we are commemorating on that day. It is a beautiful addition to a morning or evening prayer time.
http://dce.oca.org/assets/files/resources/american-saints.pdf is a downloadable, printable activity book about the saints of North America
Both http://www.goarch.org/resources/saints and https://oca.org/saints/lives offer information about the saints whose lives we commemorate each day; both can also be searched for specific days/saints.
Those of us with older children will benefit from adding to our daily prayers together, a reading from a calendar with a story and a quote from a saint, such as those available at http://livesofthesaintscalendar.com/
These are just a few ways we can begin to introduce our children to the saints, our older brothers and sisters gone on before us, who have “fought the good fight and finished the race.” Through the examples of their lives, we can see how Christians ought to live.
Through the prayers of our holy fathers, oh Lord Jesus Christ our God, have mercy on us and save us. Amen.