The danger in force-feeding faith to your kids

Deb Koster

Deb Koster
June 12, 2014

A study showing that parents who try to indoctrinate political beliefs often fail is a reminder that force-feeding our faith can similarly backfire.

Kimberly Davis
June 13, 2014

I don't have children, but having been one, I can say from experience that I was one of those kids who questioned just about everything when I got to college. I rejected rigid rules of every-Sunday church attendance and basically stopped going. I think my life would be vastly different and improved had I held onto some of those beliefs and kept searching for my own faith understanding, as opposed to rejecting everything out of hand.

June 13, 2014

That research can't be right; Richard Dawkins taught us that people only believe certain (i.e., religious) things because they were "indoctrinated" by their parents, whereas this scandalously implies many people move away *because* they were indoctrinated.

I insist this "Elias Dinas" of the "United Kingdom" re-examine the facts until they conform with the truth.

Amanda Cleary Eastep
June 29, 2014

Enjoyed the article!

I have three children, the youngest is 17 and preparing for missions. (I actually just wrote about her Bible study -- My Daughter's Muslim-Christian Bible Study.) I appreciate your response to the Atlantic article and especially with your first point. What difference does our faith make in our lives. If there is no evidence of that difference -- and that evidence should include grace when we fall -- then why would our children choose to embrace it?

To your second point, I recall telling each of my children, this is what I believe and why, but ultimately you will have to make that decision for yourselves. I would add that an understanding of other beliefs enhances those conversations and helps them to understand their own.

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