Presvytera Alexandra Houck created The Children's Word bulletin so children will know they are not only welcome in church, but even more, an essential part of the Church family. She hopes the weekly bulletin will be just one more way we can make kids feel at home in church. Presvytera Alexandra is a graduate of Duke University and Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology. Her husband, Fr. Jason Houck, is a priest at St. Mary's Greek Orthodox Church in Minneapolis, MN. Presvytera Alexandra and Fr. Jason have three small children: Lydia, Paul, and Silas. Presvytera Alexandra grew up attending Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in Asheville, North Carolina with her nine siblings.
Do you know what it means to be obedient? You might think of a dog being obedient to its master. But have your parents ever asked you to be obedient to them? When you obey somebody (when you’re obedient), you do what somebody says to do. Sometimes, that might be something you want to do…but other times, maybe it isn’t!
In today’s Gospel reading, we hear about two people who were obedient to their Master, our Lord Jesus Christ. Peter and Andrew were out fishing, but when Jesus came by, He asked them to follow Him. They dropped everything and followed the Lord. Their friends, James and John, also left everything and followed Christ too, just like that.
Saint John Chrysostom once said that that’s the kind of obedience Christ wants from us, too! He doesn’t want us to waste even a minute! He wants us to follow Him just as soon as He asks us.
Sometimes it might be hard to know what God wants from us. You probably won’t hear a voice from God that tells you just what to do! You can listen to your parents, to your priest, and to your teachers. You obey them because they are watching out for you and helping you to grow in the right way. When we follow another Christian, we are following Christ too!
A GREAT BIRTHDAY: SAINT JOHN THE BAPTIST
When you were born, your parents probably wondered what you would look like, what you would do, what you would be interested in, maybe whether you’d be famous someday. They probably still wonder these things!
When Saint John the Baptist was born, his parents, Elizabeth and Zacharias, knew their son would be great. How did they know this? Because an angel of the Lord told them so! The angel told Zacharias something before the saint was born. “And you will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth; for he will be great before the Lord,” he said.
Saint John the Baptist was Jesus’ cousin. He came before Jesus and told everybody to expect somebody to save them (a savior). He told them to get ready for the savior to come. He told them to repent—to say they were sorry for the wrong things they did.
Saint John is such an important saint for us that we have six namedays for him. Plus, every Tuesday of every week is set aside to pray to Saint John. This week, we can celebrate his birthday, and we can “rejoice at his birth”!
We celebrate the birthday of Saint John the Baptist on June 24th.
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