The Examen for Families

Blogger Cynthia Kirk proposes a way for families to use the Examen around the dinner table:

1. For what time or event today are you most grateful (thankful/happy)?

(Initially, you may have to name a few things in a young child’s day to help them catch on to the practice for #1 and #2.)

2. For which moment are you least grateful?

3. How did you show love today?

(For very young children, you may ask additional questions as your family begins this spiritual practice. Ex.: Who did you share with today? Who did you help today? It won’t be long before they understand the question and can reflect and respond without your assistance.)

4. What was one time your actions or behavior were negative or you withheld showing kindness?

(Again, for young children you might ask: Was there a time you did not share today? Was there a time you said a hurtful word or did not help?)

5. Briefly give thanks for this time of reflection and sharing and for God teaching each of you to be more loving.

Read the whole thing.


  1. I am grateful for this. I think this is a helpful practice for a family and kids alike, as they grow up..I would like to share this my friends. This is really beautiful..

  2. Jim, I already commented on Cynthia’s blog itself, but I felt compelled to comment here as well. I have been practicing this with my daugther who is 3 years old. I have found I have to help her find the things that made her happy in her day. However, I look forward to the fruit of this early practice as she gets older. I hope it will instill a desire to reflect. Thanks so much.


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