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.
Just two days ago, you might have heard about April Fools’ Day. That’s the day people play jokes on other people. They try to make the other feel silly or like a “fool.”
Today is the third Sunday of Lent, when we remember the Holy Cross. In the Gospel, we hear about how we might have to give up something if we really want to follow Jesus Christ. Today, we look at the Cross, and we see the power of God!
But in another part of the Bible, we read how some people might make fun of us Christians because we worship Christ, Who really died on a Cross! That part says, “For the message about the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” So some people might think we are fools— like we are silly or stupid—for worshiping Christ!
Did you know people have made fun of Christians for hundreds and hundreds of years? Archaeologists found a picture from 1,800 years ago. The picture is of a donkey on a Cross. The person who drew it was making fun of our Lord, and also making fun of a Christian who believed in Him! Always remember: Being a Christian might be hard sometimes, but the Cross shows us the power of God, and the love God has for us!
A NEW DISCOVERY Saints Raphael, Nicholas, and Irene
Have you ever gone exploring? You might have gone out in the woods and discovered something new, something you never saw or knew before.
On Saturday, we celebrate the nameday of three saints who lived more than 500 years ago. The funny thing is that we didn’t know about these saints until just recently! Here’s how this amazing story went:
For many, many years, people on the Greek island of Lesbos would visit some old ruins, on a special day each year—the Tuesday after Easter. But time went on, and after a while, nobody remembered why they went on that special day. It was just habit! About 50 years ago from today, a man decided to build a little chapel there. Soon, people on the island began to find out about some special saints who had been killed just for being Christians. Saints Raphael, Nicholas, and Irene had died right there, where the people had visited and prayed for so many years.
These saints were alive in Christ, even though they had died on earth. They visited the people, and told their stories. We know that there are thousands of saints that we might not know about, but God knows about! These saints are new favorites to lots of people. Lots of new churches have been named after them, including two in the United States!
We celebrate the nameday of these three saints on Saturday, April 9th, and also on Bright Tuesday, the Tuesday after Pascha.
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