The importance of fathers

Published 6:00 am Friday, June 15, 2018

I’ve been blessed with a great dad and I’m so thankful to have him in my life for another Father’s Day. Father’s play an important role in the family and in the development of children. In our home as a child, we knew we had a dad who would work and take care of us financially. He would make good decisions for our family. He was also the spiritual head of our household. My dad was exactly what a dad should be.

Men in our current American culture do not take the role of father as seriously as they should. Being a father is more than just being the biological contributor to half of a child’s DNA.

According to the National Center for Fathering, “More than 20 million children live in a home without the physical presence of a father. Millions more have dads who are physically present, but emotionally absent. If it were classified as a disease, fatherlessness would be an epidemic worthy of attention as a national emergency.”

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The statistics on fatherless children by this same organization are staggering. In homes without fathers, 44% of children are likely to be raised in poverty. Ninety percent of all runaway and homeless children are fatherless. A child in a home without a father is ten times more likely to abuse alcohol or drugs. Of all children in psychiatric hospitals, 80% of those are likely to have come from a home without a father. These children are twice as likely to commit suicide. Of all teen pregnancies, 70% happen in fatherless homes. Rapists are more likely to have come from a home without a father present as well as being eleven times more likely to have violent behavior. Fatherless children are twenty times more likely to end up in jail.

Wikipedia describes Father’s Day as, “Father’s Day is a celebration honoring fathers and celebrating fatherhood, paternal bonds, and the influence of fathers in society.” Father’s Day is a worldwide day of celebrating fathers but does not take place on the same date in every country. Worldwide, it is observed by over 40 countries.

“The Father’s Day Celebration in America is the result of the efforts by Ms Sonora Louise Smart Dodd of Washington. Ms Sonora Louise Smart Dodd of Washington that just as we have set aside Mother’s Day to honor mothers we have a day to acknowledge the important role played by the father.

The idea of Father’s Day celebration originated in Sonora’s mind when she per chance listened to Mother’s Day sermon in 1909. Fairly mature at the age 27, Sonora pondered if there is a day to honor mother then why not for father? Sonora felt strongly for fathers because of the affection she received from her own father Mr William Jackson Smart, a Civil War veteran. Sonora’s mother died while childbirth when she was just 16. Mr Smart raised the newborn and five other children with love and care. Inspired by Ms Anna Jarvis’s struggle to promote Mother’s Day, Ms Dodd began a rigorous campaign to celebrate Father’s Day in US.” –

Some scholars believe that the tradition of Father’s Day can be traced in the ruins of Babylon when a young boy called Elmesu carved a Father’s Day message nearly 4,000 years ago wishing his Babylonian father good health and a long life. It is not known what happened to Elmesu and his father, but the tradition of celebrating Father’s Day remained in several countries all over the world.

The significance of a father’s role and influence in a child’s life is vastly important. It is often said that a good husband is hard to find, but a good father is even harder.

Reach longtime Enterprise columnist Judith Victoria Hensley at or on Facebook. Check out her blog: One Step Beyond the Door.