Liturgical Gripes Part III:
The "antiquis temporibus, nati tibi similes in rupibus ventosissimis exponebantur ad necem" Nostalgia
Part I and Part II for those late to the party. Let's continue, shall we?
3) The lack of proper discipline and piety in our altar boys as well as the disrespectful behavior of our children in the nave during worship is a serious problem in many parishes.
Qualifter #1: Let me make it clear I'm *not* talking about normal childhood squirminess and fussiness. That I can deal with and, quite frankly, is typical and part of what it means to worship as a family.
Qualifer #2: I am not talking specifically about my parish, for it is a problem I've observed in many Orthodox parishes I've visited and it is a common complaint I hear from parents and priests alike.
Qualifer #3: I fully admit, as my friends James and Victoria have also confessed, that not being overly fond of children is an ugly deficiency and this certainly colors my perspective.
Though my lack of first-hand experience may disqualify me from being able to have an opinion, I still think these are issues we must think and pray and think deeply about. As a potential parent, I sure am.
If our children aren't taught the discipline and reverence that true worship requires, what ramifications will that have for their current and future spiritual lives? How will this affect their concept of and relationship with God?
What are we saying to God when we allow our children's misbehavior to go unchecked?
What are some practical steps we can take, as parents and church school teachers, to raise God-fearing children?