Traditions that never grow old - Catholic Courier

Traditions that never grow old

Every so often, when my three kids and I bike around the town of Greece, we pass by my childhood home and pause for a few minutes. I get peppered with questions about my family — what we did together, what life was like growing up.

Answering their queries makes me more fully aware of how many childhood rituals I’ve carried into the present. I have taken my children to lots of the same parks, restaurants and other places that my four siblings and I enjoyed many years ago. At home we play some of the board games that I cherished with family and friends from yesteryear.

In addition, my wife and I attend Mass with our kids each Sunday, just like I did as a youngster. During those years my parents also insisted that we eat dinner together as often as possible, praying beforehand. Nowadays my wife and I strive for the same ideal, although my daughter doesn’t always understand why it’s such a big deal to come home when neighborhood friends invite her to stay for dinner.

Indeed, just why is it so important to pass on such traditions? Doesn’t modern society say we can get by without organized religion, without the traditional family structure? These points are bound to be pondered in-depth during the upcoming World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia with Pope Francis.

Yes, we can get by. However, I can’t imagine my life being nearly as fulfilling without the traditions that filled my childhood and continue into adulthood. They are the rocks for the many times I have gone adrift.

So, I thank the many previous generations of my family for passing down these priorities — and gladly accept the baton that I now hold for instilling similar standards in my own kids.


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