Katrina Fernandez is a well known Internet presence whose best writing, whether on her now-ended blogs, in freelanced features or on social media, always seems to happen when she is connecting one on one with a person and sharing her experiences and advice in a straightforward and sensible voice that contains no artifice.
Her gifts have always seemed naturally suited to a weekly advice column, and so Aleteia is very happy to announce that as of today, Katrina Fernandez will be doing the thing she may have been born to do: dishing out a bit of blunt direction to Catholic women and men who are feeling at wit’s end on any number of subjects: raising kids, being single, being married, self-doubt, other doubt, whether throw pillows belong in a sane household and pretty much any issue people want to reach out about. This week, for instance, she is responding to a question about how to get an unwilling teenager to participate at Mass:
Everything about his demeanor and attitude says he couldn’t care less. He’s not a disrespectful kid, I promise; he just takes the same attitude with Mass as he does with chores or a visit to the dentist.
I’m not expecting miracles or for him to be the next pope, but it would nice for him at least pretend he’s interested. What’s a mom to do? I just want to shake him.
Dear Frustrated Mom,
Go ahead, shake him. He’s 14; it won’t do any real damage.
Listen, I completely empathize with your frustration. You thought, after years of struggling with an infant and toddler during Mass, you’d finally be rewarded with a child who would let you have a peaceful experience. All you’ve done is traded toddler tantrums with slouching and eye rolling. Instead of hissing “sit still” to an antsy child, you’re hissing “sit up straight” to a teenager.
Let me be the first to tell you there is hope. Your son can go from Johnny Rotten to Johnny Reverent in one step.
Read the rest here.
Katrina will be “fixing it for you” (FIFY) every Tuesday, just like the very popular column by Sister Theresa Aletheia Noble, fsp, so when you come to read one, check out the other. Call it a “Tuesday Twofer”!