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My Son Is Demented

Saturday of the Eighteenth Week in Ordinary Time

My dear encountered couples:

This man isn’t the only father worried about his son. Parents down through the centuries have agonized over the condition of their children - sometimes needlessly, other times for very good reasons. The gap in generational understanding can be expected, especially during the teen years, but when children begin to move away from the faith of their fathers and mothers and look upon God as unimportant in their lives, it can very well be a time for parents to get concerned. What should they do about it?

Arguing has seldom produced the desired results, only makes the situation worse. Reasoning and logic seem to do little to diminish a young person’s desire for independence and self-determination. So, what does a parent do when children turn from God? About the same that Jesus told the apostles to do in regard to contrary spirits that they found in people. “Have faith and pray!

Jesus told them that if they had faith the size of a mustard seed, they would be able to say to this mountain, “Move from here to there,” and it would happen. I doubt that he was talking about physical mountains unless, of course, we might want a golf course or shopping mall there. I suspect Jesus was talking about much more important things - like the improvement of souls.

When we receive the sacraments with strong faith, wonders can happen in our souls. When we pray to God with strong faith, miracles can happen. If you worry about your children drifting from God, don’t nag, but pray, trust in God, and in time, though it may not be during your time, the mountain blocking their faith will be moved, and your children will grasp on to the hand of their heavenly Father. “My Son is demented,” the man said to Jesus. Aren’t we all when we don’t turn to prayer and trust?

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