First Reconciliation Preparation
Just for Parents!
Thank you. You did it!
We know this past year you've had to take on a bit more than you expected. We are so grateful you took the time to get this far in the online program with your child. It is not easy to find an hour here and there and get your child to pay attention, but we really pray you found grace and joy in this opportunity.
Honestly, thank you. Thank you for your commitment to your child and to your child's faith. It's tough times, but you did it!
On this page we just a have few things to wrap up, including a video just for you, a reflection, and one more chance to put your love for your child down on paper. You are almost there!
Parent Part 1:
Confession is a place of victory!
Please watch this video with your partner. It is just for adults, so you kid is off the hook for this one. If you leave with one thing from this video, remember:
You have a God who will not give up on you. No matter what. Don't give up. Come to a place of victory.
Confession times are posted on our website. If you have questions, connect with the parish by phone, Facebook, or Instagram
Parent Part 2:
Forgiveness at Home
If you find these helpful, consider a few tips to reinforce reconciliation and forgiveness at home. When we forgive, we set healing in motion.
1. Sibling Arguments
All siblings bicker and fight. This provides the perfect training ground for giving and receiving grace. Kids need to learn reconciliation. Train them how to do it and be consistent in reinforcing the principles of forgiveness with even the smallest issues.
2. Unconditional Forgiveness
Teach your kids to forgive regardless of the other person’s response. What matters is that your child has feelings that need to be released. Unconditionally forgive even when it’s not reciprocated.
3. It’s Not About Being Right
When you forgive someone, it should never be about being right. It’s about the relationship being right. Teach your kids to care more about that.
4. No Stipulations
By placing stipulations on our forgiveness, we are not truly forgiving. “If you make my bed for the next week, I will forgive you.” That’s extortion, not forgiveness. Forgiveness is given without expectations or conditions.
5. Give It Time
We can’t make our children forgive someone. If we pressure them to say something when they don’t mean it, nothing gets solved. Explain the importance and the benefits of forgiving, however, the actual act must come from their heart and not our demands. Give it time.
6. Teach Perspective
We tend to only see our side of an issue. We need to teach our kids to be able to see things from the other side. Our side is only part of the story. Forgiving is much easier when we know the whole story and not just half of it.
7. Don’t Be Held Back
What do you gain by holding a grudge? Feelings of resentment keep us from moving forward. We end up stuck in emotions from past experiences. Bitterness lurks below the surface ready to rear its ugly head. Forgiveness releases it and gives us a clean slate for new experiences and emotions.
8. The Inside Eventually Comes Pouring Out
If you are filled bitterness, then that’s what you’ll give others. You can’t get clean water from a dirty source. Fill your heart and mind with peace and forgiveness, so you’ll be ready to pour that into others.
9. Teach Them To Serve
Volunteer at a homeless shelter. Go on a mission trip where they can learn to serve others. Giving forgiveness takes humility. Build a spirit of humility by being mindful of the needs of others.
10. The Golden Rule
“Treat others as we wish to be treated ourselves.” Ask your kids how they would want someone to respond when they did something wrong. They would want to be forgiven. Then tell them to do likewise.
Source: All Pro Dad
Parent Part 3:
Get it on paper!
A Letter: From Us to You
Well here you are, you and your child have completed St. Paul's Online Reconciliation Program. Congratulations! We realize it is a commitment to take the time to sit down with your child watch the videos, do the crafts, discuss the questions we have, and then answer the bigger questions that your child asks of you.
Life is full of questions. When you were married, you were asked questions, and your response was, "I do." When you had your child baptized, you were asked a series of questions, and you answered, "I do." Each time you answered "I do", you made a commitment.
There was a strong reason why we focused on the day of your child’s baptism in our preparation program. That was your child's beginning of a relationship with God; a relationship that will last a lifetime. A dream that God has for each one of us, a relationship with him.
As a last step, we are asking you to share with your child the dream you have for them. Write a letter to your child and give it to them on the day they celebrate their First Communion.
We pray for you and your family each and every day.
God bless you,
Our Parish Sacramental Preparation Team, Our Clergy & Staff, and Parishioners of St. Paul the Apostle Parish
A Letter: From You to Your Child
We are asking you to share with your child the dream you have for them. Write a letter to your child and give it to them on the day they celebrate their First Communion.
This is a great opportunity for your child to receive something in writing from you that they can read and reflect on during their journey.
Here are some suggestions for what to write. You don't have to write about all of them, just some things to consider if you are stuck.
What do you want your child to remember about his or her family?
What do you want your child to remember about the time you shared preparing for the Sacrament of Reconciliation?
What was your favourite memory of this time shared together?
Let them know how much God means to you and what you hope for in the future.
Bonus idea: Get your child's godparents involved!
Think of your godparents. Have they had an active role in your faith formation?
Consider: How important is it to you that your child's godparent are active in his or her life? If they are involved in your child’s life ask them to write a letter as well.
Consider: If they aren't as involved as you would like, perhaps have a video chat or a phone call with your child and them so your child can share their experience of this program and what God means to them. Maybe this will prompt them to take the next step and become more involved.