Marion church program offers parenting help | Local News | #parenting


Nobody said parenting would be easy. Among the challenges of raising children is the question of priorities. “The Art of Parenting,” a program at Marion’s First Church of God, aims to help parents figure out what is most important and aid them in all aspects of raising children.

“We have found that a lot of parents are confused about what is going on in the world today and how to best parent their children,” explained Mike Lange, facilitator for the weekly program.

Lange said one focus of the program is to help parents take their place as leaders in their families. The eight-week program uses video presentations, Bible study and group discussions.

“It seems as though over the last few generations, we’ve replaced God with our kids at the center of families,” he said. “It’s something that secular families and those inside the church are struggling with.”

He said families have fallen into a trap of putting kids ahead of spouses and families in general.

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“I’m as guilty as anybody with my own kids. Many of us have been all about putting our child in the best position to excel – to become the best at whatever activity or hobby they have. It’s easy to blame sports, but it’s not really just sports; it’s band, it’s dance, it’s all of the extracurriculars.

“We have gotten to where we feel we have to sacrifice everything for my family and make it all about my child and that puts a lot of pressure on the child as well as on the whole family from finances to relationships and everything in between.”

Lange explained the study may give parents a new perspective on their relationship with children.

“We live in a society where parents want to be their kid’s best friend or they try to be the cool parents,” he said. “We’re not there to be cool and we are not there to be the best friend. As the parent we are supposed to guide them in the direction they should go and this study can change generations to come.”

He said the goal is to teach parents – and children – that the world is not all about the kids’ own desires and whims.

“We want to build their character: to become Godly men and women, husbands and wives and, eventually, parents themselves,” he added.

The Art of Parenting study was developed by FamilyLife, a national non-profit ministry which strives to strengthen families.  The program, which meets at 6 p.m., each Saturday at the First Church of God in Marion. Information is available by calling the church at (618) 993-6269.

Health officials say the Omicron variant has shown mostly mild symptoms in children. Out of the 830,000 coronavirus-related deaths in the United States, over 1,000 have been children.








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