Do you have family members that have falling away from the church?

Discussion in 'Questions and Answers' started by soldier of christ, Dec 28, 2016.

  1. soldier of christ

    soldier of christ Archangels

    I have a lot of family members that do not practice their faith anymore. I don't know how to respond to some of them. Some are so angry and others just don't care. What saddens me most is when these members have children and they don't raise their children with any faith. What do you do or say to these people. I feel like time is becoming very short to what point do you walk away or not say anything anymore to these people about not practicing their faith.
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  2. Praetorian

    Praetorian Powers

    Hi SoC,
    I think the best thing to do is pray for them. Have Masses said as well if you are able to. I wouldn't stop talking to them but I think prayer and sacrifice for them is more important.

    I was just like the people you are talking about and my conversion was brought about almost entirely by the prayers of my family and Our Lady's kindness, not by someone trying to convince me to come back to the Church.

    At Fatima Our Lady said "Pray, pray a great deal and make many sacrifices, for many souls go to Hell because they have no one to make sacrifices and to pray for them. "
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  3. Booklady

    Booklady Powers

    Excellent reply Praetorian. I too owe my return to the Church to someone praying for me and Our Lady's mercy. I can only reiterate, please continue to pray for your family members. Include them in your rosary every day.

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  4. sterph

    sterph Archangels

    I give away rosaries and prayer books like my life depends on it. I invite people to Mass if they are open. I do not see much fruit with family and friends, and of course I pray and sacrifice for them.
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  5. Praetorian

    Praetorian Powers

    Thank you booklady. I think for all of us to pray for those God has put in our lives is of utmost importance at this time.
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2016
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  6. Praetorian

    Praetorian Powers

    Sterph don't lose hope. My family prayed for me for years. I was all but a lost cause. My conversion took place entirely over an 18 hour period and I got my faith back in full as a gift. I think God was storing all of the graces for me from the prayers and gave it to me all at once. I know it is frustrating not seeing the fruit but maybe that is also for your own spiritual growth or for some other reason. God's time is not our time. Your prayers are not wasted I assure you.

    I don't know if you have consecrated yourself to Jesus through Mary but if you have remember She can use your efforts for whatever See wants and that might not be what is visible to you. You may be helping save people you will never meet.
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  7. sterph

    sterph Archangels

    Thank you Praetorian. I have consecrated myself more than once, and am in the legion of Mary. I give her everything, but I cannot help and still remind her constantly of what is going on with whom and what I think they need. I am so glad she is patient. I trust my prayers will bear fruit, but you cannot help but want all your friends and family in heaven you know? And not only that, but I want to share my love and devotion to Jesus and Mary with those around me too while on earth. I am constantly editing myself for fear of hardening their hearts or something. Thank you for your kind words.
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  8. Dolours

    Dolours Powers

    These questions for Praetorian:

    How do you go about praying for them? I'm not asking whether you say a given number of Our Fathers, Hail Marys or Rosaries but I'm curious whether you pick one person and decide that you will pray for that person for a period of time and then move on to another person or do you include all in your prayers rather than saying separate prayers for each specific person?

    I find that when I start praying for one person, another pops into my mind and then another, and another, making it harder for me to concentrate on the prayer. If I do a general request that God will pour extra graces on all my family and friends to increase their faith or bring them home to the Church, I fear that my request is not specific enough.

    Perhaps this isn't the correct term to use, but do you have a systematic approach to praying for loved ones who have fallen away or are lukewarm?
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2016
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  9. padraig

    padraig New Member

    When I was young at school we had an excellent religious education one of the things we were taught to do was how to respond to some one who either had no Faith or had lost theirs. I remember one scenario we were given ; to imagine we met an atheist when we were alone with them on a railway carriage and to imagine meeting them and how to answer the challenges , the questions they might pose and how to answer them. Back then in Catholic Ireland the chances of meeting an atheist seemed as much as meeting a snowball on an African Safari! :D But how I longed to meet one an convert them in some wonderful question and answer wrestling match. :)

    Nowadays I see it much different. Pretty well nearly everyone I meet has either lost their Faith or its on the rocks but I rarely get a chance to put my nose in.

    I think the key to much of this comes in the words of Jesus;

    Matthew 10:19

    18On My account, you will be brought before governors and kings as witnesses to them and to the Gentiles. 19But when they hand you over, do not worry about how to respond or what to say. In that hour you will be given what to say. 20For it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.…

    In other words it is not about what what we are to say but what the Holy Spirit is to say through us. But when and how the Holy Spirit speaks is up to the Holy Spirit. For the SPirit takes a time and place of His own choosing and this again is shown in the words of Jesus:

    Revelation 3:20

    Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.

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  10. padraig

    padraig New Member

    If we look at the way the saints got the doors opened , I think we see they used the tools Our Lady asks us to take up in her many messages.

    Prayer, Fasting, Penance, sacrifice.

    The three children at Fatima are the most perfect exemplars of that. I think the key Sign that we are walking the right path in this is that we have a real hunger a real thirst for souls as Jesus had when He met the Samaritan woman at the Well.

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  11. padraig

    padraig New Member

    Let us ask that Lord Our God Anoint us with the Waters of Joy , so that everyone, seeing the Well from which we drink, may come to that same Well of Joy that they might drink from it.


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  12. padraig

    padraig New Member

    But notice the words of Jesus at the end of this tale. We often walk in fields that others have ploughed before us. Others have sown and we simply reap the fruit.


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  13. garabandal

    garabandal Powers

    Pray, pray, pray.

    Words are wasted as they are not in a position to hear - it is like you are speaking a different language.

    Sacrifice, sacrifice, sacrifice

    Offer little sacrifices for their conversion

    Trust, trust, trust

    Trust in the Lord and the power of his might because only he can convert

    Faith, faith, faith

    Believe that the Lord honours your prayers and sacrifices.

    I used to worry so much for my children.

    Now I believe that God has heard my prayers, I am at peace - it is all in His hands and I believe my children will all be saved because He loves me so much and I love them so much. God has a Prodigal Heart.
  14. soldier of christ

    soldier of christ Archangels

    So let me pose a question here..I asked this of a priest that I went to confession. He really offered no advise but that I should let the Lord guide me.

    What do you do when you have a family member that is so difficult to be around that mentally it just makes you so upset that you lash out at them for some of the things they say or do, but then you feel guilty for not spending time with them trying to be an example. My husband and his family do just this to myself and my adult kids. This has caused such division in my family. It is a hard line to draw showing mercy and also not being a door mat to the point where it causes such anxiety and pain.
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  15. soldier of christ

    soldier of christ Archangels

    I have always had a hard time with the bible quote.“Whoever will not receive you or listen to your words – go outside that house or town and shake the dust from your feet.” At what point do we heed this passage.
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  16. Sanctus

    Sanctus "Pray, pray ,pray!"

    I pray the Chaplet of Divine Mercy for the souls of those in my family that have fallen away. I was told by someone it is one of the most powerful intercessory prayers.
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  17. Heidi

    Heidi Archangels

    I find that it is much harder to be around the liberal Catholics in my husband's family than the atheists in my own family, because at least the atheists are not lying to themselves about what they believe.
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  18. soldier of christ

    soldier of christ Archangels

    I agree with you on that. I also have many liberal Catholics in my family. They can twist the truth to fit their needs
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  19. Beth B

    Beth B Beth Marie

    Praetorian, this would have been my exact response...especially the quote from Our Lady!
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  20. Beth B

    Beth B Beth Marie

    Never stop praying for them. Your prayers may be the only thing standing between them and hell. Offer Masses for them as well.

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