[quote="crazzeto, post:29, topic:181840"]
1) Have a talk with your wife, she is in error. Grave error actually, skipping mass is always grave matter (i.e. first step to mortal sin). Think about this way, God is literally at mass, we eat the body and drink the blood of Christ. For this to be true, Jesus is literally there with us. Does that sound like an optional attendance kind of thing? Particularly when the church only asks once a week attendance?
2) Your kids aren't legal adults, they don't have a choice. Don't bribe them, they're just going to church period.
I would spend some quality time with the Catechism if I were you before bringing it up with your wife. Study time can do a lot to help prepare you for this conversation, and most certainly pray pray pray!!! As a primer, I went ahead and found this in the CCC
You can find that in the section on the ten commandments, this comes from Article 3, The Third Commandment "Remember the sabbath day, keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work; but the seventh day is the sabbath to that Lord your God; in it you shall not do any work.
I want to respond to this as well - I see no problem with bribing the children to go to mass, especially if for no other reason than to keep them happy during church and to give them an incentive to go., It is when a child is "forced" to go because mom/dad said so that (in my experience) they begin resenting going. Because mom/dad said so just doesn't cut it when explaining to them why they should go to mass. I have seen it way too many times when kids are forced to go to church. At least if they were "bribed" with a movie or something if they went and were good, it would keep them fairly well behaved and possibly even listening in church. I have so many friends - many who even went to catholic school who were forced to participate in the Catholic Fiath and because of this wound up resenting it. When they are quite young, they should go to be exposed and more than likely because they will want to be with mom and or dad. But when the kids hit the teen years they should be able to decide. Forcing them to go will not make them want to learn more about their faith - many will wind up resenting the fact that they were forced into going - just "because" - with many kids there are enough of answers that are "because I said so..."
I want to think of this from God's perspective - do I want people to come to mass because they're forced to on pain of punishment (i.e. grounding, spanking - whatever?) - No, I want people (kids) to come because they want to be near Me and love Me.
I'm sure there are plenty of stories of people out there that were foced to go to church and who now embrace the faith. I know there are many but there are (statistics seem to point out) many leaving the faith = I just don't see how forcing a teenager to go to church is going to endear that person to the faith. If it's something they have to do then when confimation comes up and they are expected to do that, do you want them doing it because it's expected and it's time to do this? That's why I went through my confirmation when I did and I know many others in that same group of kids being confimred either did it for that reason or for the huge confirmation party and gifts they were to get. Is this how we want our kids to get confirmed - because it's that time and it's expected or because they love God and want to make a commitment to Him and the Faith? Young children send to church, I don't know that you'll have a huge problem there (unless it's older children not wanting to go and having younger chidlren emulate them) - but when they get to be in High School, give them a chance to decide for themselves - otherwise you may find as soon as college hits that you have a kid who wants nothing to do with the Mass or Catholicism. This is just MHO - but it's based on what I've seen and my own experiences.