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.
Salvation is A Gift
Has anybody ever given you a gift…and you never gave anything back? Sometimes you might get a present, and you just say “thank you!” You might not give a present back. Today’s epistle reading reminds us of the great gift that God gives us…and we can never give anything back for it. Saint Paul writes, “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and this is not your own doing, it is the gift of God.”
God has given the world a great gift—the best gift! When God sent His Son, He wanted to save the world. He wanted to give people a place in heaven with Him forever. When Saint Paul wrote, “By grace you have been saved,” he meant that saving the world was a gift. God gave us this gift because He loves us. He didn’t save us because of something we did, or because of a gift we gave God. God saved us because He loves us.
On Christmas or on our birthdays, sometimes our parents have to remind us to say thank you for all of our presents. But today, when we hear the epistle, let’s remember to say thank you to our Lord for the best gift anybody could ever give—joy in heaven forever!
New Martyr George of Chios
Think to yourself: What’s the biggest mistake you’ve ever made? Sometimes we might make mistakes that we feel bad about for the rest of our lives! This week we remember a Saint George who made a mistake when he was a boy, and he regretted it very much. Once, young George was caught stealing some fruit. The owner brought George to the authorities, who told him he could be free if only he would give up his Christian faith. George said okay, and became Muslim. Now, he had a new name,Ahmed. But George felt so bad about his mistake.
We celebrate this Saint George Wed., Nov. 27th (Dec. 10th 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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