A question about answering faith questions from kids in atheist families

A reader writes:

So, I live with a family that is vaguely religious. They don’t seem to be Christian and seem to belong to a spiritual community of some kind, but I’ve never heard them say anything about religion, spirituality, etc. They have a couple of small children who often take an interest in me and I’m not bashful about walking around with my sacramentals. So, I was thinking, what do you think I should do if they begin asking questions about sacramentals or God, if things went that way? I’ve been thinking about this also, because my brother is an atheist and has a child that I love dearly. Is it prudent to offer some catechesis or direct their questions to their parents? Thanks!

I think you should answer the questions honestly and let the chips fall where they may.  You aren’t proselytizing or pressuring, just responding to a kid’s honest curiosity.  They have a right to hear the truth.  You have a right to speak it.  It doesn’t have to be presented as a challenge to parental authority.  It can be spoken simply as “Here is my experience.”

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