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 five small children: Lydia, Paul, Silas, Philip, and Sarah. Presvytera Alexandra grew up attending Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in Asheville, North Carolina with her nine siblings.
Have you ever been afraid of somebody who is really there to help you? Maybe you’ve been a little scared of talking to a teacher or going to the doctor. Maybe you have seen a police officer or firefighter, and you wanted to hide. Sometimes we are frightened of somebody who is actually there to help us!
When we read today’s Gospel, we think about how sometimes we might even be scared of our good and loving Lord! But why? Well, maybe we might think God will punish us for doing something wrong, or He might be angry at us and we’ll be in trouble then! But the Gospel tells us these beautiful words: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. For God sent the Son into the world, not to punish the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.”
Do you see? God is on our side! He didn’t come to earth to punish us and get us in trouble. He didn’t come from heaven to tell us all the things we’re doing wrong. God came to save us. He came to love us. He came to bring us to heaven. When we remember the love God has for us, we can’t be scared of Him!
THE ELEVATION OF THE PRECIOUS AND LIFE-GIVING CROSS
Do you have something that is precious to you? Maybe a pet animal or a favorite toy or a present from your grandmother? Maybe your parents have told you that you are precious to them!
Something precious to you is something that means so much to you, something you wouldn’t trade for anything! A pre- cious jewel is a diamond or another gem that is worth a lot of money, but something precious to you might not be worth anything to somebody else.
On Wednesday we remember another great feastday of our Church. It is the Elevation of the Precious and Life-Giving Cross. It’s the day we remember how the Empress Helen searched for the real and holy Cross of our Lord, Jesus Christ. Then, when she finally found it (with the workmen), she elevated it—she raised it up high. She wanted everybody to know how precious the holy Cross is.
This week (and every week), let’s try to think about how much our Cross means to us. When Jesus died on the Cross, He wanted to give us something more valuable than any amount of money. He wanted to give us life with Him forever!
We celebrate this great feastday on Wednesday, September 14th.
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