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 told on somebody… about something you’ve done too? You might have told your parents or your teacher on a brother or sister or classmate. “He hit me!” “She called me a mean name!” “He wrote on the wall!” “She broke my Lego creation!” But maybe you did that too!
In today’s Gospel reading, we hear a story about just that same thing. A king asked his servants to pay him back what they owed him. Well, sadly, it was a lot of money, and one servant couldn’t pay it all. He begged the king, “Have patience with me, and I will pay you everything!” The king felt sorry for him, and he said the servant didn’t have to pay it. The king forgave him.
After that, that same servant found somebody who owed him money. He told him to pay him the money back. Remember, even though the king forgave him, he wouldn’t forgive the other guy!
That story in the Bible is about forgiving others. It is about treating others as you would want to be treated. It is about not complaining about our friends and our classmates, when we’ve done the same wrong thing!
Let’s remember how much our Lord forgives us every day. When we remember that, we will know we shouldn’t talk about other people who do the same wrong things!
WORLD’S BEST MOTHER-THE THEOTOKOS, THE MOTHER TO US ALL
On Mother’s Day, do you make a card for your mother? You might say something like “Number 1 Mom” or “You’re the best!” Your mother might have a coffee mug that says “World’s Best Mom” or something like that.
This week, we celebrate a great feastday for somebody who really is the “World’s Best Mom.” Who is that? It’s Mary, the Theotokos, the Mother of God! We honor her this week, on the day that she died. We honor the Theotokos because she made a good choice to be the mother to Jesus, Who is God Himself. We honor her because she loved Him and took care of Him as a child. We honor her because she saw her Son die on the Cross. We honor her because she has a special place with God.
We know Mary is so close to God, so we can pray to her. Then, she will ask her Son to help us. For the last two weeks, we have been praying special prayers to the Theotokos. Lots of times, we say, “Through the prayers of the Theotokos, Savior, save us.” Mary, the Theotokos, listens to everyone who calls to her. That’s why we call her the “Mother to us all.” That’s why she is really the “World’s Best Mom”!
We celebrate the Dormition on Wednesday, Aug. 15th (August 28th, OC).
Welcome to “The Children’s Word,” a weekly ministry of the Orthodox Christian Network. Each week, Presvytera Alexandra Houck writes this little newsletter for young parishioners! You will find age-appropriate articles, stories, and activities in every edition. The newsletter is provided in PDF format so that you can easily download and print it, and share it with your parish, church school, homeschool, family, and friends.
Each issue includes a message on the Sunday Gospel lesson and on one of the saints for the week. You’ll also find a coloring page and other activities. It is designed for a 8.5 x 14 page, so it can be printed and folded.
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