04-08-2018 The Fourth Commandment: Strengthen Your Family

Our Lady of the Holy Rosary-St. Richard Catholic Church
Journey of Faith
April 8, 2018 - Second Sunday of Easter (Sunday of Divine Mercy)
Opening Prayer
Scripture Readings
What is your experience of being a member of your family? How have you treated your parents and brothers and sisters?

The Fourth Commandment calls us to “Honor your father and your mother.”

This Commandment concerns all aspects of family life—dealing with the love, responsibilities, and respect between parents and their children, and between brothers and sisters. It also concerns the duties of the government and its citizens, including the responsibility to foster family values and to strengthen the family.

The Church teaches that the family is intended to be “a man and woman united in marriage, together with their children” (CCC, no. 2202). “Marriage and family are ordered to the good of the spouses, to the procreation and education of children…Children owe their parents respect, gratitude, just obedience, and assistance” (CCC, nos. 2249, 2251).

Children’s respect for their parents is derived from a grateful heart and love towards those who gave them the gift of life and nourished, supported, and loved them throughout all stages of their growth. This becomes especially important as their parents become elderly, or their physical or mental states begin to deteriorate.

Parents are to love their children. They have the responsibility for the education of their children in the faith, prayer, and all the virtues. Parents witness their love through their example and by providing as far as possible for the physical, intellectual, emotional, moral, and spiritual needs and well-being of their children (cf. CCC, no. 2252).

For a variety of reasons, other forms of family have developed, such as single-parent families, blended families, foster families, extended families, joint families, stepfamilies, grandparent families, same-sex parent families, and childless families. The family is holy, not because it is perfect, but because God’s grace is at work in and through the family. All families experience challenges and deserve compassion, support, and the hope that they may be faithful to Christ’s way of love.

The Catholic family is the “domestic church,” and is the fundamental community of our Church. Christ calls all members of the family to union with God and to share in the mission of the Church. Family members do this through Baptism, the Sacraments, fostering mutual love, communion, prayer, lives of virtue, life-long learning, self-sacrifice and, with God’s continuing grace, to share and witness to others the reign of God’s love, communion, peace, justice, compassion, mercy, forgiveness, healing, and salvation. 

*U.S. Catholic Catechism for Adults, Ch. 28.
 Reflect on Your Experience
What can I do to better help my family to be more loving with one another?

What do I do to show my respect and gratitude to my parents?  
U.S. Catholic Catechism for Adults   Catecismo Catolico de Los Estadios Unidos para los Adultos  
"The Domestic Church"

"The Fourth Commandment" (Fr. Dan O'Reilly)

"Honor Your Father and Mother" (Young People Comment)

"Respect Your Parents"

"Honor Your Mother and Your Father" - CCC 2196-2213 (Fr. Daniel Mahan)

"Family Duties" - CCC 2214-2233 (Fr. Daniel Mahan)

"Duties of Civil Authorities" - CCC 2234-2257 (Fr. Daniel Mahan)
"All That I Am"

"Majesty - Worship His Majesty"

"Come to Me" (David Haase)

"Here I Am to Worship"
Rites, Symbols, & Practices
"What Catholics Need to Know About Making Their Homes a Domestic Church"

"How Does the Fourth Commandment Apply to Family Life" 

Catechism Commentary on the Fourth Commandment"

"Tools for Building a Domestic Church"

"Building the Domestic Church" (Knights of Columbus)

If you have any questions or concerns, please email us at: aff@hrsrcs.org
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