“Mummy, if you got raped or molested, would you have an abortion?” was a question posed to her by one of her sons recently.
Tricia Syms, Episcopal Delegate for the Archdiocesan Family Life Commission (AFLC), hosted episode one of the virtual Children Are Gift (CAG) ‘nugget version’ online parenting programme, entitled ‘Understanding Yourself’ on Friday, April 9.
The CAG programme is based on the Parenting and Family Life manual produced by the AFLC and is a guide for all persons, especially parents, teachers, and caregivers.
It provides practical tools for parenting and highlights some challenges that children face such as, abuse and neglect. It also roots parenting within God’s wider plan for God’s people and promotes the sacredness and dignity of human life at every stage of human development.
Children are gifts that bring life to relationships and teach families how to love. In this special year of the Amoris Laetitia family, where there is a special emphasis on ‘where are our children’, it was explained that children are not their parents’ possessions (to be treated as they wish) nor are parents their children’s possessions (to be disowned or dishonoured at will).
In response to the question above on abortion, she disclosed that her son asked her whether or not she would have an abortion if she were raped or molested to which she responded to him that all children are gifts irrespective of the circumstances of their conception so that she would keep the baby and seek counselling to deal with the trauma of the rape.
Parents have the responsibility to be as whole as they can be so as not to pass on their unresolved issues to their children. Persons were thus encouraged to take care of their physical, emotional, intellectual, social, and spiritual selves, which are to be anchored in the God-centred virtues of justice, fortitude, temperance, and prudence.
The AFLC also offers counselling and other services in order to strengthen families. Practical examples for effectively living personal wholeness and balance can be accessed by viewing this segment on the AFLC’s Facebook and Instagram pages – @familylifecommission and the AFLC’s website at aflcrc.org to learn more about the Children Are Gift programme, which livestreams on Fridays at 10 a.m. on Facebook.
Copies of the parenting and family manual are available at $50 a copy. Contact the AFLC, 299-1047.