Should You Force Your Kids To Go To Church?

Being a parent is one of the toughest yet most rewarding jobs.  There are so many questions that arise each day that we may feel at a loss for words of how to answer. One of those being, how do we shepherd and guide them to be more like Jesus and have a personal relationship with Him?


Should we force our kids to go to church? It’s a question that may come up in your homes as your kids start to ask if they really need to go to church today. Force is a strong word, so let’s use the term parental guidance and instead talk about how you can show them the path to Jesus.  Going to church is one example.


I was one of those kids that tried to pretend I was sleeping to get out of Sunday school in the morning as a child.  To be honest, I found it boring, but my parents still made me go every week.  And I’m so glad that they did.  In late elementary school is where I started to dive deeper into my faith.


If your kids are starting to question if they have to go to church, start by opening up a dialogue with them.  Depending on if they are in middle or high school, you might direct the questions a certain way to try and get at the root cause of why they don’t want to go to church.  Is it the teacher or how they teach? Do they not have friends in the group? Are they bored? Are they struggling with their faith? Begin to search for a reason, so you can best determine how to guide them spiritually.


We should be modeling healthy and consistent habits for our kids in our homes.  This would include going to church every week.  This is stating that God is a priority in our home.  Having and developing a relationship with Jesus is why we attend church each week.  Being part of a strong Christian community is another reason why we prioritize going to church.  How can we inspire our kids to know what being in a Christian community looks like?  Maybe that’s talking with your kids about how the message or worship songs touched your heart or got you thinking more.  It could be hosting a Bible study at your home or having Christian families around the house.  Bring Jesus inside your home and into your conversations.


I encourage you to make going to church a priority in your home and continue to emphasize that importance to your kids. What a beautiful gift it is that we get to worship amongst believers and grow in a loving community.


Becca Ebenhoch
Director of Soul Exercises