I don't know how to handle this

I have 5 year old boys. The last few days have been interesting.

All of a sudden the other day they started talking about holy water. I have never mentioned it. Realized when they were pretending to throw it on each other and then fall over that they were playing vampire like they had seen on one of the kids shows they watch.

Today they were playing in the living room while I was taking pictures down off the walls to pack. One of them went and stood up to the wall, stretched his arms out to his side and bent one knee up. He flat out said “Look, I’m Jesus”. I asked him why he thought he was pretending to be Jesus like that and he said because it is on my Rosary.

I explained to him as best as I could without freaking him out that, this was the way Jesus died and it was not something to pretend play.

I have no idea how to handle all of this. I want to teach them what is correct but I don’t want to scare them. Any advice would be really appreciated.

What do you mean by “handle it”?

We’re the attitudes poking fun or just pretending? My siblings and I used to play Mass, where we’d pretend to be the priest, hand out communion, etc… We also played “Fatima”, and my sisters would take turns being the children or the Blessed Mother. We never were disrespectful, we were merely acting out things we’d seen at different times in our life (like playing “school” or “restaurant” or reinacting scenes from movies).
I have a 6 year old who is very sensitive and I always have to be careful about what I tell him. In fact, just yesterday he was talking about the Easter bunny and being excited about that. I asked him if he remembers why we celebrate Easter. He said he didn’t remember. I asked why we celebrate Christmas, and he said because it’s when we celebrate Jesus’ birthday. I explained that Easter is another point in His life we’re celebrating. Jesus was killed, BUT resurrected and came back to life to make room for us in Heaven with Him someday. So even though it’s sad to think that he was killed, it’s a miracle that he rose again so we can go to Heaven! I always try to focus on the miracle of the resurrection. Not that I’m ignoring the Passion, that’s definitely important. But, for this particular boy, too much detail about it would be upsetting for him. I’m sure there are kids who can handle that just fine, but my boy is not one of them. In time, I’ll give more in depth details. For now, he’s satisfied and amazed about it all. I wouldn’t worry about it unless they seem to be mocking it, rather than just imitating it. Take these opportunities to speak with them about whatever they’re focused on at the moment (crucifixion, holy water, etc…). Keep the Faith alive through conversations, not just at prayer time or church time!

TwinMommy,

Hi! I am also a mom of twins- never a dull moment in my house, either. :slight_smile:

I asked my priest about something similar. My boys tend to try and copy Mass. I have one son that has the ability to remember conversations at length, so he was repeating parts of Mass and the others were following along. I asked my priest if I should stop them, wondering if they were unintentionally bordering on sacrilege (but also not wanting to discourage possible early vocation discernment :slight_smile: ) and he said it was normal for children to do that, but probably a good idea to stop them if one of them goes far enough to say / “offer” – “body of Christ?” and then explain why or to tell them to ask him why (my oldest is 7).

I suggest mentioning it to your priest and think that you did the right thing in explaining. Maybe going over the Sorrowful Mysteries with your rosary (like no more than 5 mis or so - very condensed version) with your son to help him make the connection with the seriousness in the Crucifixion would be useful? Possibly curbing the tv show influence also might help- I had to do that with a show that my kids were fond of when I saw too much “witch/vampire/spooky” themes recurring as well that I wasn’t comfortable with. They got over it :smiley: .

I am the oldest of 5 kids. A while ago my sister was preparing for first communion. She started taking potato chips and saying “The Body of Christ” and eating it. I got mad but my mother said it was ok until she started recieving the Eucharist. But after she did my sister still did the potato chip thing. One day I got fed up and yelled at her. Not the nicest way but it worked.
:stuck_out_tongue:

Thank you all so much!!!
I think when we move next week and have parish that will be very helpful as they will be going to Mass, they will be around other children who are Catholic, I will have a priest to talk with and so on.

I wish it was easy to cut out shows. Their father is not very understanding about them not watching everything they want. It has caused a few arguments. I was not having it when around Christmas time, he put on for them an episode of South Park. Really?? I won’t even watch that. No five year old should ever be watching that. He just doesn’t get it.

I agree with others that much depends on the attitude of your children. Were they laughing and mocking that Jesus hung on the cross or were they simply pretending they were Jesus as they see on their rosaries? My guess is they were just acting it out they are very young! It is normal for children to pretend everything! My children played house, Mass, animal games, dolls, superman, dinosaurs everything!

I understand you were concerned that what they were doing was inappropriate so you told them not to pretend play, however I don’t think that was necessary. You could sit them down and tell them that “Mommy told you not to pretend Jesus the other day, but I changed my mind. Jesus loves you and he was a little boy just like you! If you want to pretend you are Jesus that would be fun I can help you get some robes or costumes too if you want.” Hope this helps a little, praying too for your husband to see what TV shows are not healthy for his children, God bless you.

I agree with all the posters here. And we also asked our priest friend about this very role playing. He told us that he used to role play being a priest by wearing his “vestments” and making his younger siblings sit and listen to him preach. He also said this is often how children discern vocations.

Funny incident happened with TV in our house. My son (10) begged us to watch Family Guy so he could talk about it with his friends at school. We watched something like 10 episodes with him and just told him why this show was wrong on so many levels. Hubby said this would be the last time he caved on age inappropriate TV based on son’s peer pressure.

Costumes play sound perfect! They love to dress up in all their costumes. Now just have to find them…my husband is an awesome sewer so I could get him to make them.

Oh he will put on Family Guy and let them watch with him. I am always having to reinforcement my views on what is not right for them to watch. Drives me a bit crazy.

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