261. Obsession, however, is not education. We cannot control every situation that a child may experience. Here it remains true that "time is greater than space".291 In other words, it is more important to start processes than to dominate spaces. If parents are obsessed with always knowing where their children are and controlling all their movements, they will seek only to dominate space. But this is no way to educate, strengthen and prepare their children to face challenges. What is most important is the ability lovingly to help them grow in freedom, maturity, overall discipline and real autonomy. Only in this way will children come to possess the wherewithal needed to fend for themselves and to act intelligently and prudently whenever they meet with difficulties. The real question, then, is not where our children are physically, or whom they are with at any given time, but rather where they are existentially, where they stand in terms of their convictions, goals desires and dreams. The questions I would put to parents are these: "Do we seek to understand 'where' our children really are in their journey? Where is their soul, do we really know? And above all, do we want to know?"292
291 Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium (24 November 2013), 222: AAS 105 (2013), 1111.
292 Catechesis (20 May 2015): L'Osservatore Romano, 21 May 2015, p.8.
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