Why are childhood impressions so important? Why is it essential to fill a child’s mind and soul with light and goodness, starting from the very earliest stages of its life? In childhood we find a natural gift for faith, simplicity, gentleness, a capacity for tenderness, compassion, imagination, an absence of cruelty and hardness. Now this is precisely the kind of soil that yields a harvest thirty-fold, sixty-fold or an hundred-fold. When, later in life, the soul has become hard and dry, a man can be cleased anew and saved by the continuing presence of his childhood experience. That is why it is so important to keep children close to the Church–it will provide them with nourishment for their entire lifetime.
The Diary of a Russian Priest