Springtime brings a rush of promposals among juniors and seniors in high school, and the excitement mounts as the day of the dance approaches. While not every student chooses to attend prom, its enduring popularity makes it a beloved pop culture staple for teenagers, including Catholics. So, we turned to the Bible for wisdom and now proudly present these Prom-verbs to help guide Catholic teens at the big event.

P R O V E R B S 17:17
“A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.”

Prom celebrates high school friendships.

Good friends support one another. From asking a date to choosing a dress to hanging out at the event, friends have each other’s backs. Take fun photos with your date and with your friend group to cherish the gift of their companionship. A big part of prom is enjoying friends and being a good friend.

As one of the final events of the school year, prom can be bittersweet for high school seniors who may be socializing with their classmates in a large group setting for the last time. Seniors need extra love throughout the party. In the Bible, we are reminded to “encourage one another and build one another up.” (1 Thessalonians 5:11)

Pope Francis says that young people are particularly vulnerable to “exalt[ing] physical qualities as if they were the primary goal in life” because this is what society models. But the Holy Father encouraged teens at World Youth Day in 2023, “God loves us as we are, not how we would like to be or how society wants us to be, as we are.” Good friends model this type of Fatherly love.

Friends look out for each other — so don’t give in to jealousy or envy. Don’t totally ditch your friends for your date. Don’t turn a blind eye to a classmate who may feel excluded. As Pope Francis also notes, “It is easy to delegate charity to others, yet the calling of every Christian is to become personally involved.”

This Proverb teaches us that well-tended friendships can last long after high school and provide support during hard times.

P R O V E R B S 13:20
“He who walks with wise men becomes wise,
but the companion of fools will suffer harm.”

Don’t be a fool on prom night.

Despite what movies and music might say about prom, the data shows alcohol abuse and promiscuity have dropped among teenagers. Prom night sex is more of an urban legend than a popular activity. These facts are helpful in avoiding peer pressure. Perhaps the riskiest prom night behavior is getting into a vehicle with an impaired driver. Wise friends maintain safe driving conditions — they ensure passengers wear seatbelts, they support but don’t distract the driver, and they never allow their friends to enter a vehicle with a driver who has been drinking alcohol.

Yes, prom is a rite of passage for many students. Yes, prom definitely embraces youthful fun. But no, prom is not an excuse to abandon your values or common sense. This Scripture passage reminds us that negative peer pressure can cause spiritual (and physical) damage. Choose wisely.

P R O V E R B S 31:25-26
“Strength and dignity are her clothing, and she laughs at the time to come.
She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.”

Psalm 139 praises God the Creator and how He made each of us uniquely and wonderfully. Catholics honor the dignity of all people as brothers and sisters in Christ. It is tempting to “look on the outward appearance” and no further, but in 1 Samuel, we are inspired to look as God does, “on the heart.” This is great advice for choosing a prom date. (1 Samuel 16:7)

This Proverb is the best biblical advice for choosing a prom date. Ask someone (or attend with someone) who has confidence (not cockiness) and a good sense of humor. Choose a self-possessed, kind person, and your prom experience will be blessed! If your prom date shares your Catholic faith, consider starting the evening in the chapel with a prayer for safety and good judgment.

Then, with your date and group of friends, dance the night away in wholesome fun, “all to the glory of God.” (1 Corinthians 10:31)