Orthodox America


  On the Duty of Parents


He that begetteth a wise child shall have joy of him. -- Proverbs 23:24

Many parents teach their children the arts that serve the temporal life, and spend no small sum on it, but they neglect the Christian teaching and are remiss in teaching their children to live as Christians. Such parents beget their children unto the temporal life, but close the door to the eternal.

      St. John Chrysostom, in considering the misfortune both of parents that neglect the good upbringing of their children and of the children not well brought up, says this, "Parents that neglect to bring up their children as Christians, are most heinous murderers of children" (Homily 3, "Against Those that Slander the Monastic Life "). For child-killers separate the body from the soul, but these parents cast them both soul and body info fiery Gehenna. It is impossible to escape from the former death accIndex - Number 138ording to natural law, but it would be possible to escape from the latter death were the negligence of the parents not to blame for it. Moreover, once it comes, the Resurrection is able to abolish bodily death, but nothing can overturn spritual destruction. Therefore, parents, listen to the word of the Lord, "Bring up your children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord" (Eph. 6:4). --Saint Tikhon of Zadonsk, Journey to Heaven


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