My adult son and I are attending early morning Mass on vacation at the beautiful diocesan Cathedral in Cheyenne, Wyoming. The Bishop of the diocese is saying a Mass devoted to Mary, Help of Christians. This is a father-son camping vacation. My son and I are doing our best to put God first in our vacation, and the Lord in turn is blessing us abundantly by giving the two of us a Mass said by a bishop.
Fathers have been blessed by God to have such a primary influence on forming their children. Fathers are a living representative to their children of the heavenly Father. "For whatever the father does, the son does likewise" applies to both Jesus' relationship to His heavenly Father and earthly fathers' relationship with their sons (Jn 5:19). "For the father loves the son and everything the father does he shows him" (Jn 5:20).
God has created the father-child relationship in a special way. His plan is to turn the hearts of the fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers (Mal 3:24). In sending St. John the Baptist to earth, God even specifically mentioned that one of the effects of John's ministry was to turn the hearts of fathers to their children (Lk 1:17).
When fathers live for the Lord and the Church, the children are likely to follow the example of their fathers. Alternatively, if we fathers live a sinful lifestyle, our sons are likely to imitate that same lifestyle (see Am 2:7). Fathers, lead your children to the Lord and His Church.