Figuring out how to pray with kids can sometimes be difficult. We’re sharing a few tips to make this family time more manageable.
What to consider when you pray with kids
Praying as a family is a hard habit to build in normal circumstances, let alone a global pandemic. Many of us are home with more family time than usual, and while this presents many challenges, it also brings with it the opportunity to pray together as we navigate this time.
We reached out to a number of families of all sizes and ages and asked for their wisdom in how to pray together, with kids. Overwhelmingly they emphasized the importance of:
It’s helpful to be consistent in both how and when you pray, so kids know what to expect every day.
Focus on saying prayers that ignite children’s imaginations and show them how to be quiet with God. This could be sharing gratitudes in a fun way, drawing a picture for God, or any other ways that work for your kids.
Praying within a manageable time frame of prayer is important to keep kids engaged. For younger children, this is likely less than 5 minutes. For old children, 10-15 minutes of prayer might work. As you know that you might have to work to build up the length of time kiddos can stay engaged, we recommend starting with 1 minute of prayer and gradually add more time.
It’s crucial to open about your faith — both the peace it brings you and the struggles you have. The home is the first place kids experience the love of God, and there is no better way for them to witness God’s love than through your example. They might as you some questions, so be patient and do your best.
How to pray: with kids
Here are ideas for different ways of praying throughout your day, but know that this is not supposed to be overwhelming; life is hard enough right now, without adding more to your plate. So, choose just one time of day and one type of prayer, and see what works best for your family.
- Start your day with the Hallow’s Family Prayer Morning session, which includes a song, psalm, and time for you to talk about the day ahead.
- Pray together a simple “Come, Holy Spirit.”
- Begin your meal time with grace and share how your day is going so far.
- If you have quiet time after lunch, encourage your kids to spend some time with Jesus. Give them religious books, saint blocks to play with, or have them journal if they are older.
- Try Hallow’s Family Prayer Dinner session: includes grace and fun discussion questions to talk about together.
- Make your own Litany of Saints: have each member of your family choose their favorite saints, write them down, and pray together “St. (fill in name), pray for us.”
After dinner/before bed
- Choose a Hallow challenge to work through such as Saints (really popular with kids!) or Our Father.
- Choose a passage from the Bible to pray with imaginative prayer. The Nativity (Luke 2), Jesus walking on water (Matthew 14:22), and Jesus healing the paralytic (Mark 2) are all great ones to try. Read the passage a few times, ask kids to imagine themselves in the story, and talk about what it would have been like to be there.
- Try Hallow’s Family Prayer Evening session, which includes Scripture, time to share intentions, and closes with the Salve Regina.
To fall asleep
- Check out Hallow’s sleep section! There are Sleep Bible Stories, Saint prayers, the Hail Mary quietly prayed on repeat, and other meditations. Start with the shortest lengths and pray together with your kids as you tuck them in.
- Pray this simple prayer: Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep; Thy angels watch me through the night, and keep me safe till morning’s light. Amen.
Let us know: how do you pray with your kids? Are there any ways of praying as a family you would love to see in the app? You can contact us at email@example.com, or feel free to message any of our social channels @hallowapp.
We hope these tips support your time in prayer as a family.