Teaching the Bible
to Catholic children was not common when I was a little girl. I attended St. Edwards Catholic school. It was in Corona, California. At the time, Corona was a small town in the southern part of that state. It was a very traditional setting and I was shy and compliant and easily intimidated. The nuns were in full dress. Their habits were made of white cloth which suited the warm months, although their hems skimmed the grown. It was hard to imagine that there were actual people ensconced in their starched collars and squared-off hoods.
Teaching the Bible to Your Children or Grand Children
We memorized the catechism and recited it out loud. We did this as a group over and over. I can do it even today. “Who made you?” “God made me.” “Why did God make you?” “To know, to love and to serve him” We had catechism daily, just like the pledge, just like the Morning Prayer.
My other Christian friends were learning about God at their summer Bible schools. They were hearing about God on Sundays and Wednesday nights at church. They got to eat donuts. We Catholics were not allowed to study the Bible
directly. We needed guidance from a clergy member. Once in a while, Monsignor Thompson would come into our classroom ( it seemed to me these visits were never announced, he just appeared). He would give us a morality-charged lecture. I liked it best when he interrupted math class. We were well drilled by the time we finished kindergarten. By second grade we could rattle off a list of mortal and venial sins. These came in handy when we went to confession. But truthfully, I was always forgetting my sins by the time I got to the weekly confessional, so I would furtively make them up. Navigating as a young Catholic seemed dark and perilous. On the upside, I received a high quality education and a resolute work ethic.
Teaching the Bible to Children Today
It seems to me that Catholic children today have a much greater opportunity to learn about the Bible. They can do this under friendlier circumstances. Catholics are encouraged to read the Bible
, to join study groups, to learn from Sunday school programs. They can even study at home. There are fewer Catholic schools today and so the Church has taken on more of the education. Even the nuns look vulnerable and human in paired down clothing, no habits, short skirts.
Grandma Shares Her Faith
is a handy series of books that are just being reprinted and are a user friendly way to read to your children or grandchildren as they learn about God and the Bible. Book I in the series is Adam and Eve
. The series isn’t just a condensed version of Bible stories for children. We are introduced to Grandma and each of her grandchildren as they learn about the Bible along with us. Author, Laura Lipari describes the reaction and questions that each child asks in a warm and lighthearted way. The questions might sometimes surprise adults but young children will find them perfectly natural and they give Grandma (and you) an opportunity to explore the answers in child friendly terms. We even get to know the lively pets at Grandma’s house. All of these features have delighted hundreds of children that had Ms Lipari as a regular guest at St. Dominic School in Cleveland
, Ohio, where she read to them each week for several weeks each school year. Check it out on Amazon