Our culture is experiencing a crisis of masculinity. We’re confused about what it means to be a man and because of that, we struggle to initiate boys into authentic masculinity. In this episode, Fr. Blake and Brandon discuss how to father boys and help them to encounter God, sharing plenty of practical tips.

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  • Gentlemen there are some men trying their best to raise daughters and sons on our own, or halftime as their wives have left them for “not feeling in love anymore“. It is a difficult situation when you are devoted Catholic father, intelligent or even professional and your spouse has moved on with another even before divorce and annulment. The teenagers especially notice the dichotomy… And unfortunately… As you have mentioned you have one arm tied behind your back culturally these days and you come across as old-fashioned or out of touch And the weight of bad media against other Christian denominations with their dislike of the charismatic LGBQT individuals Certainly has you handicapped. It’s very difficult to overcome the moral relativism, the if it’s not hurting anybody it’s OK attitude, and it’s my choice attitude. I’ve had trouble controlling devices/screen time when their mother allows it. Many of us single parents(Which used to be Mothers but now includes involved fathers) are out in the wilderness. I wish there were some parenting aids specifically addressing these situations, including some apologetics for the teenagers asking hard questions about morality(thankfully they’re brave enough and comfortable enough to ask)

    • I’m so sorry about your situation, Myles. Your pain and struggle come through in your comment. Know that you have our prayers! Regarding your last question, I recommend Trent Horn and Leila Miller’s book, “Made This Way: How to Prepare Kids to Face Today’s Tough Moral Issues.” It’s excellent!

  • Thank you for great advice on how to raise boys into holy men! However sometimes it is very hard to do it alone. I return my MOTHERHOOD to God to help me,because when there is a lack of faith and communication between spouses the evil comes in and destroys the efforts one has achieve.any other suggestions? also thank you for the advice of making a home a living sanctuary. I do have statues and candles and 14small crosses around my house. I would love to get rid of tv. That that will call for divorce (I think)!!I do pray constantly for the conversion of souls!!!

    • Lol! Me too! As the lady of the house I would love to get rid of the TV not because I see it as intrinsically bad but because when it is watched ( which isn’t that often) it makes the kids think for a little while that everything pales in comparison. It makes you think you are living the excitement and adventure, when you are, in fact, not. But it’s a constant debate between the man of the House and I!

  • Thank you for having your conversation broadcasted by video and podcast. When trying to share Catholic insights with my brother who is coming back to The Church, he said he can’t concentrate on the message and process the information when only in audio form. We learn by different means and a plethora of men in my life are visual learners.

    You are certainly building community. Keep up the heavenly work here on earth.

  • Brandon. This was the first Podcast with Father Britton and you that I’ve heard. It was wonderful. I sent it to my son (age 26) and a friend whose son just had his second son. Just one caution. Brandon, your recommendation for the resurrection of rights of initiation is a non-sequitur for young men on the autistic spectrum, who experience those rituals as purposeless torture. Many male saints were on the spectrum, including those who endured real torture.

  • I say without reservation that my greatest accomplishment was raising four faith-filled men who remain active in the Church. They have all married good Catholic women, and in one case, even inspired conversion to the faith. I agree that good priests as roll-models were very important to their development. I would emphasize though, the importance of the loving partnership with my wife as we worked together in raising these boys. We admit that we made many mistakes along the way but our boys always knew they were loved.

  • Have you read “The Young Man of Character” by bishop Thiamer Toth published by angelus Press? I have ordered the Eldridge book to read but I feel this is a great catholic complementary piece!

  • Love the podcast, guys!

    Brandon — you probably read as many books as anyone I know. My wife & I have three boys under 5…any recommended reading for parenting headstrong preschoolers?

    Thank you and God bless you both!

  • Love listening to you guys!
    If it wasn’t unethical, I’d say we should clone Father Blake! :-).
    What a vocation!
    So inspiring…I have 4 boys!
    Thank you both!!

  • Loved the reminder to stir up a sense of wonder in the world for my sons. This can certainly happen in nature, but also in the most menial moments of every day by showing my sons a curiosity and gratitude for the things around us. St. Josemaria Escriva was a great model of this. G.K. Chesterton also had that amazing ability to see the divine everywhere around him.

    I do have to say respectfully that I was “triggered” by the inference that Confirmation is a rite of passage marker where someone chooses to be an adult Catholic (man, in your example). I have to spend an entire Fall season every year debunking this modern cultural phenomenon to parents and teens in Confirmation prep. Up until the 1900’s, Confirmation was placed at the age of reason (7) after Baptism but before first Communion. Lining up the age of Confirmation with Bat Mitzvahs and other tribal teenage rites of passage into manhood is a very modern byproduct of separating/delaying Confirmation from the first Confession and first Communion. Just like in first Communion, there is a rich theology of Confirmation that can be unpacked in age appropriate ways as they get older, but it is all about God choosing them and what He is giving to them (in the sacramental graces) vs. the opposite. We obviously have to choose to follow God and make it our own faith along the way, but that isn’t fundamentally what is happening in the sacrament (other than the renewal of baptismal vows and the biblical principle of repentance to become a follower of Jesus). I know you are a theologian in your own right and it seemed like you simply meant to highlight that Confirmation can help us to become real men of mission and self-sacrifice. I am just sensitive to the language since I have to deprogram preconceived notions about Confirmation in order to actually dispose young people to the most fruitful reception of the graces God is giving them in Confirmation.

    I loved the follow up about the sense of mission that Confirmation calls us to and how that can be an inspiring “call to arms” for young men. Even the old school “slapping on the cheek” that the Church used to do remind a Confirmand to “be a soldier for Christ” post Protestant reformation speaks to that.

    Great conversation, even on the level of modeling the relationship of a priest and a father through your friendship and the way you spoke to each other. Thanks for doing this, Pax Christi!

  • How about a podcast on raising good and holy girls for God with Kathleen as a co-host? This podcast was an excellent resource for all those involved with the raising of boys! Thanks for all you both are doing to offer suggestions and ideas in many different subject areas!

  • Thank you for this fruitful discussion. What a countercultural gift of hope! I got so much out of it and am very hopeful on what is possible and works to help raise our children for a flourishing future. “The glory of God is man fully alive”. We need instruction, guidance, and inspiration to make this happen, which you both gave in abundance. Thank you.

    I`m an older father who had kids later in life, but still need to know how best to be a father, what works, and to try to move forward to make the most of the amazing vocation of being a parent and father to my son and daughters. What an oasis of truth, freedom, and possibility there is found in these podcasts. Keep up the wonderful work!

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