Catholic Dictionary




The duty of children to obey their parents, as prescribed by the fourth commandment of the Decalogue: "Honor your father and your mother so that you may have a long life in the land that Yahweh you God has given you" (Exodus 20:12). The precept obliges children to show love, reverence, and obedience toward their parents. The love that is due should be evident in words, actions, and attitudes. The obedience concerns everything that is part of the parents' care and obliges until the children reach their majority. It does not apply, however, to the children's choice of a state of life or, when they are of age, a choice in a marriage partner.