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.
Have you ever tried to make a big decision all by yourself? Even little choices can be hard to make when you make them alone! Lots of times, it helps to make a decision with other people. You might know one thing, but your friends or family probably know other things. When you talk about them, you can agree together.
Today in our Church we remember the Holy Fathers of the First Ecumenical Council. (That’s the Church’s first big meeting). They met together because they had to make big decisions. They knew it was better to agree on them together.
In the Gospel today, we hear the prayer that our Lord Jesus Christ prayed before He was about to be arrested and before He would die on the Cross. He prayed to God the Father, “Holy Father, keep them in your name…that they may be one, even as we are one.” Our Lord wanted His disciples to be one. That means they would agree on things together. They would have the same faith.
Did you know that after Jesus rose from the dead, His disciples had a meeting too? We can read about it in the Bible. We can read how they talked together, and made a decision together. They knew the Church is one!
THE RIGHT KIND OF PROTEST: SAINT THEODOSIA OF CONSTANTINOPLE
Have you ever heard on the news about some kind of protest? You know, sometimes people might march in the streets with signs and shouts because they want something to change. Sometimes the protesters have good reasons to march around, but lots of times, they don’t.
Saint Theodosia was a protester too, but she had a very good reason to protest. She was a young Christian woman who loved the Church very much. When she was around, the Emperor started to make rules that said Christians could not have icons. They started to take down icons around the holy city of Constantinople.
Saint Theodosia wanted to do something about it. She was a young woman, but she led a march around the city, and lots of brave, faithful Christians followed her. When they saw somebody taking down an icon, they kept him from doing it.
Saint Theodosia knew she would be punished for going against the Emperor’s rules…and she was. She was hurt so much and thrown into prison when she wouldn’t give up. Then she was even killed for her faith. But, isn’t it great that now, 1300 years later, we still remember her name, her bravery, her love for Christ, and her place in heaven with Him?
We celebrate the nameday of St. Theodosia tomorrow, Monday, May 29th.
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