Catholic Family updated by Mary Bowen on March 13, 2020
If you'd like to have a peaceful, happy family, you must have a devotion to the Holy Family. They are the perfect models for you to imitate as their home in Nazareth was truly a Heaven on Earth.
Good St. Joseph sought God's Will and followed it courageously. Holy Mary pondered things in her heart. Our Lord Jesus was obedient to His parents.
The deeper the friendship you have with the Holy Family the more you will imitate the ways in which they responded to God's call to love one another.
Taking a deeper look into the way the Holy Family lived out their home life, a hierarchy desirable in an ideal civilization takes shape. This should not be surprising as the family is the most basic unit of society.
The structure of the Holy Family paints the picture of God's plan for all human authority.
St. Joseph was the father and the head who exercised ultimate authority. As the perfect model for fathers, he always fulfilled the Will of God. This was never done for his own glory but for the good of Holy Mary and Our Lord Jesus.
Good St. Joseph listened to the angel when he told him to marry the Virgin. He woke Holy Mary and told her the Christ Child was in danger and took his family into Egypt after yet another message from an angel. He led the family back to Nazareth when an angel told him it was safe for him to do so. St. Joseph listened for God and always responded when he heard the call.
Seek God's will. Be self-sacrificing. Exercise your authority keeping in mind you will give an account to God for authority neglected as well as authority abused. Love your wife as Christ loved the Church. He died for her, remember? Train your children to love and respect their mother. Provide for your families monetary needs even if this causes you great difficulty.
Holy Mary was the queen and heart of the family. She also had genuine authority over the family. Holy Mary and St. Joseph cooperated perfectly with each other possessing but one will. Their holy union is a model of how the Church cooperates with Christ.
Disfunction creeps into families when this union is disrupted. Both father and mother have a genuine obligation to make decisions that are not self-seeking but in accord with God's will.
The father is the head and should be cheerfully obeyed by the mother. More than once the Gospels tell us that Mary kept all things in her heart. She was reflective and serene. She was patient and waited for God's Will to be revealed through the commands of Good St. Joseph.
Surely she helped St. Joseph and he went to her for guidance, but it is revealed that God made His Will known to St. Joseph whom was entrusted to carry it out.
Obey your husband and submit to his preferences. Be a loving companion. Be patient. Try pondering more than speaking your mind. Train your children. Teach them manners. Fulfill your duties faithfully.
Fathers and mothers are obligated to care for their children's physical, mental, moral and spiritual well-being. Parents not only feed and clothe their children and make sure they are healthy, but they also oversee the education of their children. Another duty of Catholic parents is to ensure their children learn to know, love and serve God. Making sure they receive the sacraments and develop a spiritual life is the most important duty of parents.
Because children are incapable of doing these things for themselves, the primary duty of a child is to be obedient to his parents. In a Catholic family, God has given parents authority over their children. The biggest fault of parents and the biggest hindrance to a happy family is parents who do not confidently exercise their authority over their children.
Our Lord Jesus set forth the example of how children should obey their mother and father when, after being lost in the temple, He went home with St. Joseph and Holy Mary and was obedient to them and grew in grace before God and man.
Willingly obey. Be kind. Do your duties cheerfully. Try hard at school. Say your morning and nighttime prayers.
The Holy Family's perfectly laid out relationship of Catholic family life ought to be studied and followed.
If you want a happy family, start practicing the tips in bold on this page. Confession is your best friend as you develop these practices. Buy a picture of the Holy Family and place near your family altar. Keep praying for their intercession.
Kathleen Bowen is a founding member of IndustriousFamily.com. She is a busy homeschooling mother of ten children with seven currently in school. She loves throwing parties and having fun. She takes great pride in homemaking, gardening, flowers and creating table arrangements.
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