How is faith passed on—and whose responsibility is it? As numbers among young Catholics dwindle, proper education and support of the faith is crucial to future of the Church. Though 93% of Catholic parents believe it is “very important” for their children to celebrate the sacraments, attendance at Mass and enrollment in Catholic education are lower than ever. But it doesn’t start in CCD or even church. It starts at home.
If children aren’t first exposed to the Catholic faith by their parents, it is unlikely that they will ever be exposed at all. As a child’s first influence and most frequent interaction, parents are uniquely positioned to pass on the faith more so than any other teacher or parish member. Yet, passivity, secularization and miseducation are responsible for parents increasingly “outsourcing” their child’s Catholic education to priests and catechists instead of acting as a mentor and champion within their own home. While faith is important among Catholic parents (71% express that prayer is essential to their faith), it is not being put in practice in ways that will successfully shape the next generation (only 7% of Catholic parents prefer to pray as a family). If we want to build a stronger, thriving church for future generations, we must start with the first and most basic unit of community: the family.
68% of Catholic parents do not have their children enrolled in Catholic religious education.
63% of Catholic parents attend Mass no more than twice per month, with 22% rarely or never attending.
THE CENTER OF FAITH FORMATION
The OSV Institute is committed to supporting organizations and programs that provide resources, education, relief, emotional support and faith building to young Catholic parents in order to: