Message from our Readers: Family Really Matters

I am thrilled to be writing this column for Karibu News.
My regular column on Family in the Challenger Community News began in November 2015, and the great response has been overwhelming. Now, to have this opportunity to speak to the refugee and immigrant communities of Buffalo and Western New York is wonderful! I look forward to sharing with you my great love of family, children, parenting and even grand-parenting.
Allow me to give you a little background about myself first. I grew up here in the beautiful City of Buffalo, finished High School in three years, graduated from an Ivy League University and completed Law School in Maryland in 1984. I am a wife, mother and grandmother. My joy has been to raise my family under Christian principles as a follower of the Lord Jesus Christ. I believe God, through His Word, the Bible, has ALL the answers for a Blessed strong family life.  His Word is the foundation in marriage (32 years for Jerome and I) and raising our 3 children (Paul, his wife Alexcia and their son, Paul, Jr.(1); Shayla, her son Xavier (9) and Sara our youngest is 21).
From that perspective I will share in the coming articles on how to be the best parent you can be, how to strengthen families and will even offer advise on how to navigate the Courts and Family Law. Should you have questions on any of these topics, please feel free to contact Karibu News at karibunews@gmail.com; e-mail me at katieharrodlaw@yahoo.com or call (716) 352-4396.
When I started the column in the Challenger it was after an interesting run for Family Court Judge. Running for public office in Erie County was an eye-opening, and invaluable experience that I will always cherish. Meeting so many fantastic people in our WNY area and seeing such strong support for the possibly of the first elected African American woman Judge was exciting.  When that door opens again i will step up. Why? Because it is another way to teach our children to try to reach your dreams and goals, even if it looks impossible.
We must lead by example. Good leaders say “Let’s go!”. Mediocre leaders just say “You go!”. It takes courage to show our children and grand children the way to go forward in life. It’s a simple process but its not EASY.   I like the advise that Moses’ father-in-law gave him in Exodus at 18:20. He said “…Teach them ordinances and laws, and l shew them the way wherein they must walk, and work that they must do.”
This is so important for leaders and parents to understand.  The Lord expects us to teach and train our children in the right way (See Proverbs 22:6). It is our responsibility.  This great responsibility is an honor and the schools, teachers, coaches are there to help. But understand that raising our children is first, foremost and PRIMARILY the responsibility of parents.
Grandparents and other family members can be absolutely invaluable because of their wisdom and experience. But I will continue to encourage our parents as this column is written each month. Until then Be Blessed!