Secrets to Success

Memorizing Scripture With Our Children

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Secrets to Success

Memorizing Scripture With Our Children

Tips on how to learn Bible verses as a family.

Winter 2024 | Olivia Spears

In This Article

From his youth, Jesus committed the Scriptures to memory. When he was confronted with the lies of the devil in the temptation in the desert, he could then recite those passages that were “put on his heart and soul” (cf. Deut. 11:18).

We are wise to do the same— and to teach our children to do the same.

In a world that bombards us with lies about who we are and what we were made for, equipping our children with “the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Eph. 6:17) is one of the great gifts we can give them.

Through our work at Into the Deep, where we create faith formation resources for Catholic parents to use in their homes, we have witnessed abundant fruit in families who set out to memorize Scripture. Learning God’s word together builds family bonds and produces storehouses of truth in the minds of our kids—and in our minds as parents.

While this practice has eternal value, it is rather simple to begin.


1. Choose a Verse

Start with a shorter verse, allowing everyone to stretch their memorization muscles. Then, increase the length of passages, particularly for older children. Choose a verse that is significant to your family. Consider the readings from your wedding or a favorite Gospel account.

You could also choose a Scripture verse that is relevant to the liturgical season. For example, memorizing a verse from the Annunciation would be lovely during Advent.

Finally, all Scripture is “useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness” (2 Tim. 3:16). If there is a virtue you desire to cultivate in your family, or if there is a family cross or struggle, consider related verses.


2. Memorize It Together

Once you have chosen a verse to memorize, present it to your kids with enthusiasm!

You may enjoy writing or printing out the verse to hang somewhere in your home so everyone can see it easily and regularly.

It is helpful to provide some context for the verse they are memorizing. Tell them a bit about the historical setting or the events surrounding the verse. Presenting the verse as a part of the story helps them paint a living picture of the verse in their imaginations.

Then, simply read the verse a few times. The next day, read it again, and have the children repeat after you line by line. Continue doing this until they can recite the verse without your help. There is no timeline here; stay with a verse as long as necessary!


3. Repeat

Once a verse is memorized, select another verse. Occasionally review the verses you have committed to memory.

Finally, remember that this is not sterile memorization for its own sake. Our aim is to plant seeds that our children will harvest long after they leave our homes!


Olivia (Osborne ’12) Spears, the founder and executive director of Into the Deep, may be contacted at [email protected]. For a free list of Bible verses ideal for memorization, visit

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