National Catholic Register

Culture of Life

Obligated and Well-Adjusted

Fact of Life

BY The Editors

June 28-July 11, 2009 Issue | Posted 6/19/09 at 1:30 PM

 

A new study indicates that children taught a strong sense of family obligation by their fathers do better as teenagers than their less-obligated peers. Released in the Journal of Family Psychology, the research showed that 14-year-olds who reported a greater sense of familial duty presented fewer symptoms of depression two years later. Study authors Linda Juang and Jeffrey Cookston, both associate professors of psychology at San Francisco State University, described obligation with examples such as caring for younger siblings and helping older relatives. Which brings to mind some recent words of Pope Benedict to young Catholics: “There is a need for young people who will allow God’s love to burn within them and who will respond generously to his urgent call, just as many young blesseds and saints did in the past and also in more recent times.”