Dads, I know what you’re thinking…I’m super busy. I don’t have time to read. Believe me, my husband has said it time and again. But what if I told you that these books were filled with great prayers, lessons, opportunities, and hope to aid you in your tremendous vocation?! They don’t have to be read in one sitting, they can be aids to your prayer life. Chapters at a time with periods of reflection are often better than taking it all in at once.
Check out this list. There are some books here that could change your outlook, give you a boost, and bring you closer to your own heavenly Father. Father Lawrence Lovasik reminds all dads that “Fatherhood is a vocation in God’s service, to not be held lightly or frivolously, but with the serious determination of serious men.” (Click on the pictures for affiliate link.)
The Original Fathers’ Manual is the first Father’s Day gift I gave to my husband. I had received The Original Mother’s Manual as a gift from my mother and loved it. The Father’s Manual is much the same. There are prayers for every possible need for one’s children, marriage, and vocation. The end lists the responsibilities of fathers for reflection. It’s a powerful book and my husband uses it often.
In Be DADitudes: 8 Ways to be an Awesome Dad, Greg Popcak takes each beatitude and explains how fathers can use these points to become amazing fathers and husbands. Greg Popcak is a counselor and presents the information in a simple way. This is one of those books that would be great for short periods of reading.
If you are a fan of research, you will love Father, The Family Protector. James Stenson interviewed many families and looked at the successes they had raising their children. He found common attributes with parenting, specifically with the role of the father. In today’s society, he found it particularly important to note that the father plays an incredibly important role, and with a society determined to undermine the head of the family, this book hopes to help dads stand strong.
Though not written specifically for dads, I can think of no better resource for the spiritual head of the family than the Manual for Spiritual Warfare. (Just look at the cover!) This book is full of information about how the Evil One finds ways to attack our families and gives prayers to help combat him. It’s a father’s duty to make sure all souls in his care make it to heaven and this book is perfect for the battle.
Perhaps short quotes of Catholic inspiration are what you need. Be Not Afraid is a book put together by Sam Guzman, blogger at The Catholic Gentleman. Strong Catholic men, saints, and leaders of the church speak about suffering, strength, and growing in virtue. Though these pages are only quotes, they are truly inspirational and motivating for all men.
Joseph’s Way: The Call to Fatherly Greatness was given to my husband by my father. It is an EXCELLENT book for any father. For 80 days, there are short reflections and prayers that help to guide dads in their faith and power as a father. While the book begins with a focus on faith and continues with a focus on hope, there are smaller sections that call dads to reflect on gifts like silence, obedience, humility, and fortitude. The book concludes with helping dads create a domestic church for their families.
“If you asked twenty good men to-day what they thought the highest of the virtues, nineteen of them would reply, Unselfishness. But if you asked almost any of the great Christians of old he would have replied, Love. ” This is the opening line of the collection of essays that make up The Weight of Glory. This books is perfect for the dad who loves classics and delving deep into the apologia. Some of the other essays included are “On Forgiveness”, “Learning in Wartime”, and “Membership”.
Man to Man, Dad to Dad: Catholic Faith and Fatherhood is a collection of reflections on topics that most dads have to deal with. Some of the topics include disciplining children, keeping kids Catholic, and Theology of the Body for Dads. Many of the contributors to the book are well-known and offer good, helpful guidance.
No one knew Jesus and Mary more intimately than St. Joseph. The School of Nazareth: A Spiritual Journey with St. Joseph is a 30 day devotional to St. Joseph. Each day there are reflections and prayers that can be said alone or with your wife. (It is also a great companion/follow-up to “That Man Is You”, a men’s fellowship group.)
Hero: Being the Strong Father Your Children Need is a new book written by Meg Meeker. If you need practical advice, have questions about raising kids, or just need a general pick-me-up, Meg Meeker is known for her simple way of offering advice to parents. (I also highly recommend Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters: 10 Secrets Every Father Should Know.)