By NICHOLE GOLDEN, Staff Writer | Published February 20, 2014
PEACHTREE CITY—Jason Evert travels the world speaking and listening to youth and their parents about chastity and pure love.
Evert and his wife, Crystalina, run the ministry Chastity Project, an alliance of young leaders promoting purity. He spoke to parents at Holy Trinity Church in Peachtree City Jan. 25, calling them the best educators of their children. The program, “Raising Pure Families,” was followed by Eucharistic adoration.
How can parents help their children live the virtue of chastity? Evert presented 10 practical tips for moms and dads:
1. Practice intercessory prayer for your children.
Evert says that Pope John Paul II often called his own home his first seminary because of his father’s constant prayer life. In addition to prayer, Evert encourages fasting and the sacrament of reconciliation. “It’s potent,” he said about children seeing a parent in line for confession.
2. Set the standard high and clear for your children. Teach them that safe sex is a lie, emphasized Evert. He said it’s about risk avoidance, not risk reduction.
3. Be a parent first, not a buddy.
4. No dating until 16 or older. The purpose of dating, said Evert, is ultimately to find a spouse and is not for recreation.
5. Have a parenting network in place. These are parents who have the same values as your family.
6. Use Internet monitoring. Evert recommends having an accounting and filtering software program such as Covenant Eyes. He also says no child should have a cell phone in their room after bedtime. Evert said parents should not accept the common excuse about phones: “But I use it as my alarm clock.”
7. Ask good questions. Listen to your teens.
8. Have thousands of talks with your children, not just one “Chastity Bomb” conversation. When you see a commercial using sex to sell something or inappropriate clothing at the mall, use it as a lesson. “They are actually teaching opportunities,” said Evert.
9. Get over your insecurities. Don’t let your own failures prevent you as a parent from being a positive teacher.
10. Chastity is a virtue; practice it in your own life. Chastity is about more than abstinence from sex. Within a marriage it includes being open to accepting children.
“Children are the supreme gift of marriage,” said Evert. He encourages husbands and wives to learn about and practice Natural Family Planning. “They are never going to fail to imitate us,” said Evert, of children.
Resources such as “Pure Love,” a booklet for teens providing straight answers on how to find real love, are available through www.chastityproject.com.