Beatitudes for Parents

Marion E. Kinneman


Parents through the ages can identify. "Could someone, please, just give me the final answers to parenting?" we ask. "ALL of them? Could someone tell please tell me how to respond and what to do and what to say and when to say it and do it and tell me now?"

But, of course, we ask the impossible.

Maybe this will help. I have saved it for years…It is not the final answer to parenting, but cherish it as a dose of wisdom worth re-reading as often as possible.

Blessed are those parents who make their peace with spilled milk and with mud, for of such is the kingdom of childhood.

Blessed is the parent who engages not in the comparison of his child with others, for precious unto each is the rhythm of his own growth.

Blessed are the fathers and mothers who have learned laughter, for it is the music of the child’s world.

Blessed and wise are those parents who understand the goodness of time, for they make it not a sword that kills growth but a shield to protect.

Blessed and mature are they who without anger can say "no", for comforting to the child is the security of firm decisions.

Blessed is the gift of consistency, for it is heart’s-ease in childhood.

Blessed are they who accept the awkwardness of growth, for they are aware of the choice between marred furnishings and damaged personalities.

Blessed are the teachable, for knowledge brings understanding, and understanding brings love.

Blessed are the men and women who in the midst of the unpromising mundane, give love, for they bestow the greatest of all gifts to each other, to their children, and—in an ever-widening circle—to their fellow men.

The Beatitudes for Parents were written by Marion E. Kinneman (1895-1985) about 40-45 years ago. Marion wrote this piece specifically for her two daughters to assist them in the raising of her six grandsons. They were first published in Family Circle magazine, and have been reprinted numerous times since.

Marion was born in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania in 1895. She graduated from Bloomsburg State College in 1913; in 1922 became the Assistant Dean of Women at West Chester State College. She married John A. Kinneman in 1924; they relocated to Normal, Illinois where my John was the head of the Sociology Department at Illinois State University. Marion E. Kinneman died in 1985.

© 2001 Steve Goodier
Life Support System