Question: What do I do if my relatives do not share my enthusiasm about God and the Church?
Answer: Apostle Paul says that an unbelieving husband is sanctified by his believing wife. If you have just turned to God, it’s your natural desire to bring your entire family to him and have a monastery at home. It won’t happen overnight. In fact, it may never happen… You should take care and be cautious. You can talk persuasively and insist on something but it will cause a knee jerk reaction of aversion, lead to quarrels and misunderstandings. This is why you should build up the strength of your inner self and look for opportunities to go to church, to confess, to take communion, and keep growing steadily. You should seek God’s will every day, do your best to serve your neighbours selflessly, try to understand and accept them. It is through you that your family can be saved. It will happen only if your relatives see God inside you, if they come to realise how great it is to live with him, how much beauty and might there is in the Church. Apostle Paul said, Bear ye one another burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ… The most important goal is not to lose the grace that you’ve received. It can get lost if we judge others, complain, or doubt. The devil will try to do everything possible to destroy peace in your family. This is why “he who treads softly goes far.” Confess and take communion. If someone is annoyed at seeing you make the sign of the cross, don’t do it to show off. If it is possible, bring your children to communion but only if your family members do not protest against it. Look for balance. I had that period when I came to the faith and my relatives thought I fell mentally ill, too. I had to pray secretly, in the bathroom or in the toilet, so that no one could see. My soul was on fire for God. Later, everybody started going to church and I didn’t have to hide anymore, but the fire ceased to burn. I had to force myself to pray. May God grant you strength, courage, patience, and humility. May Christ enter your home and consecrate it. May there be a home church in your home. You have to be very careful and tactful not to do any harm.