Skip to main content

Sacraments and our kids - have you had to be "creative"?

I wrote in an earlier post about some of the problems we've had getting our disabled daughter confirmed. One reader commented that our methods depended on "impatience, presumption, deception, and disobedience", and that was not a good example of saintly parenting.

I know many homeschooling families who've had trouble getting sacraments for their kids because their children were not enrolled in the parish religious education program, but rather were being taught their Faith at home. Some priests and DREs insist that this is not "kosher" and a child won't be able to receive a sacrament unless they are in the parish program.

There are parents whose children have severe gluten allergies and have had to figure out a way to have a child receive the Eucharist.

I myself had a young woman with severe mental illness come to me when I was working in a parish. In her twenties, she desperately wanted to be confirmed, but her anxiety and depression kept her from attending RCIA classes. With the understanding of the priest, she met with me and her parish mentor, and we helped her prepare. I don't know that I've ever seen a more joyful recipient of a sacrament. I know she still struggles with her illnesses, but know she has the grace of Confirmation to aid her.

I am not suggesting that parents out-right lie to or deceive priests and parish workers: "Oh, no, Father. We aren't living together!" or "My kid just can't make it to all those classes because he's a wunderkind at soccer and we travel too much". However, there are circumstances where people should be able to receive sacraments without so many obstacles being placed in their paths.

A wonderful document regarding this topic for people with disabilities is the Guidelines for the Celebration of the Sacraments  with Persons with Disabilities.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Trying to "end run" God

If you're a football fan, you know what an end run is. From Merriam-Webster:
a football play in which the ballcarrier attempts to run wide around the end of the line We try to "end run" God a lot. I do. I figure I know better. I've got this - no need to worry the Big Guy about such a trivial thing.

Of course, it never works.

Like the puppy above, when we try and evade the tough obstacle (even though we KNOW we will eventually have to do it), we end up - well, off in the bushes.

But oh! How I wished my way worked. I'd love to take a flying leap and land smoothly and gracefully. People would be in awe, as if watching Simone Biles nail a balance beam routine that no one else would even attempt. I would shyly look down and blush - just lightly - and acknowledge (But humbly! Oh so humbly!) my achievement.

But no: I am the one pulling myself out of the bushes, scratches all over my legs and twigs in my hair. I'd hear that gentle but loving voice of God saying, &quo…

Secret Santa!!

Too old for Santa? I think not.

Yes, there are discussions as to whether we should "lie" to kids and tell them that Santa brings them gifts vs. We can't lie to the kids; it's wrong.

There is also the "Christmas is about Jesus" vs. "But Santa is magical!"

You know, we have so few magical and joyful moments, and less and less as we get older. Santa is fun. And the kids usually figure it out, and no one I know was ever scarred for life for believing that Santa brought them and every child everywhere a toy for Christmas.

It's the magic of looking up at the sky on a clear December night, thinking "I'll wait up to see Santa" and later, as you fell asleep at the window, being in your daddy's arms as he carries you to bed.

It's the magic of putting out cookies and milk (or beer, because Santa does like beer) and maybe some carrots for the reindeer, and then checking in the morning to make sure the food was all consumed.

It's…

Advent Brokenness

It was a lovely May evening, the kind we in Michigan savor like honey. After the brutal cold of winter, flowers blossomed, grass greened, mosquitoes flocked. School was almost done for the year - just the formalities of 8th grade graduation were ahead.

Why not saddle up the horse and go for a ride? Why not, indeed. So my sister and I did. I took Prince out across the road from our house, to romp through the weeds on a path my father mowed for us. The view from horseback on a spring night - well, nearly Heaven.

Until Prince bolted. He spooked. I fell. And my arm broke. Compound fracture.

My dog, a collie, had followed us out. He was not particularly trusting of Prince, as Prince would never allow himself to be herded, and this vexed my collie. My dog, channeling his inner Lassie, ran home without me.

My sister had been in the yard with her boyfriend at the time, Gary, waiting for me to come back. Instead, it was just the dog loping across the road. That didn't seem right, so my si…