Explaining Virgin Martyrs to Children
#11
Virgins have never been married. That's all she needs to know at seven. If she asks about the Blessed Virgin Marry, tell her that she and St. Joseph lived as brother and sister. It wasn't a romantic love with kissing and all.
"Not only are we all in the same boat, but we are all seasick.” --G.K. Chesterton
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#12
(02-19-2012, 11:00 PM)knittycat Wrote: Many thanks to su I now own a copy of the lives of the saints.  We have been reading it daily, and the book often lists what kind of person that particular saint was. i.e. Priest, Martyr and so on.
I am sure that very soon my little girl is going to be asking what a virgin is, as the book lists many Virgin Martyrs.  She goes to a parochial school, so she obviously knows of the Virgin Mary, but I think at this point she just knows that as part of her title.  She is only 7 and we haven't had the talk just yet, and I'm not entirely sure how to explain what a virgin is specifically, and more specifically what virgin martyrdom might entail.
Any ideas?

The theological significance of virgin may not need the "talk".

I'd say it is a special state of life which is particularly focused on God. This would explain why it is important, why the Virgin Mary is significant (a Virgin who had a child and was married, yet, maintained virginity), and not cause more questions about the exact definition.

The definition of virginity can not seem that important to a child anyway.


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#13
I'd explain it as unmarried with much virtue.
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#14
(02-20-2012, 12:30 AM)Neo-Floriano Wrote:
(02-19-2012, 11:58 PM)Mithrandylan Wrote: Although I suppose it might make more sense to her to say a virgin is someone who gets married to God, not another human.

I like that idea most.

I do, too. Short, simple, straight to the point.
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#15
Chidren don't require much explanation in this area assuming you have protected their innocence. Ask questions of their questions and you will often realize they are not inquiring about these things.

It's amazing how much damage Psychology 101 and college educations have done to this country.

The high school educated people of my parents generation would not have to ask such a stupid, yes stupid, question.

Now college educated women ask about how to change diapers and get into a tizzy about the basics. But, hey, they're career women and they drop off the children at daycare and pick them up in a state of shock.

It's all good.
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#16
If a child asks a question, it is a good sign the child is old enough for the answer to the question.  An important part of being a parent is being able to recognize and use teachable moments.  Very often the child's question means that this is an opportunity when the child is receptive to learning.  I always try to answer my children's questions with as much of the truth as they can understand.

We live in a society that constantly surrounds our children with wrong messages about sex.  Our children will be immersed in values that separate sex from marriage and from procreation.  The sooner we start telling telling our children the truth, that God designed these things to go together, the more protection we give them from the lies of the world.
It would be nice to live in a world in which we don't have to say anything to our children about sex until the day before they marry, but we don't live in that world.  
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#17
(02-20-2012, 12:13 PM)JayneK Wrote: If a child asks a question, it is a good sign the child is old enough for the answer to the question.
But only if the child understands the question being asked.

Sometimes, kids ask questions without knowing what they are asking. Of course, adults do this too.

Quote:An important part of being a parent is being able to recognize and use teachable moments.  Very often the child's question means that this is an opportunity when the child is receptive to learning.  I always try to answer my children's questions with as much of the truth as they can understand.
I asked my mum how her genetic information and my father's were combined to make mine.

Quote:It would be nice to live in a world in which we don't have to say anything to our children about sex until the day before they marry, but we don't live in that world.  
I think knowledge of biological functions are important. How is a person to properly discern marriage without understanding it? Or did you mean not having for a parent to worry about talking about it but know the child knows the biology?

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#18
Yes, of course.

I forgot, we all live in Lake Wobegon now.

"Where the women are strong, the men are good looking, and all the children are above average".

My mistake.

I stand corrected.
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#19
(02-20-2012, 12:17 PM)su Wrote:
(02-20-2012, 12:13 PM)JayneK Wrote: If a child asks a question, it is a good sign the child is old enough for the answer to the question.
But only if the child understands the question being asked.

Sometimes, kids ask questions without knowing what they are asking. Of course, adults do this too.

Yes, there is some discernment involved.  One needs to figure out what the child is really asking.  One mother told me the story of a boy who kept asking "Where are their heads?" when they drove by a cemetery.  Finally they figured out that someone had told him that people's bodies were buried there.  In his mind, this meant bodies as opposed to heads.

(02-20-2012, 12:17 PM)su Wrote:
Quote:An important part of being a parent is being able to recognize and use teachable moments.  Very often the child's question means that this is an opportunity when the child is receptive to learning.  I always try to answer my children's questions with as much of the truth as they can understand.
I asked my mum how her genetic information and my father's were combined to make mine.

I told my children that babies were made from a cell from the mother and a cell from the father combining. We looked pictures of sperm and ovum joining, along with the rest of prenatal development, whenever I was pregnant.  We were always talking about what the baby inside mommy looked like.  I didn't tell them how the two cells ended up in the same place until the children were older.

(02-20-2012, 12:17 PM)su Wrote:
Quote:It would be nice to live in a world in which we don't have to say anything to our children about sex until the day before they marry, but we don't live in that world.  
I think knowledge of biological functions are important. How is a person to properly discern marriage without understanding it? Or did you mean not having for a parent to worry about talking about it but know the child knows the biology?

That was hyperbole. Children need to know at least enough about biology to understand the changes that take place at puberty. And they need to understand their own sexual feelings and know what to do about them.
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#20
(02-20-2012, 12:22 PM)Adam Wayne Wrote: Yes, of course.

I forgot, we all live in Lake Wobegon now.

"Where the women are strong, the men are good looking, and all the children are above average".

My mistake.

I stand corrected.

How many children do you have, Adam?  What experience are you basing your comments on?
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