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 visited a cave, or have you gone for a walk in a very dark place? Maybe it was so dark that you couldn’t see anything or anybody around you. What did you do? Did you turn on a flashlight and look around? When you turn on a flashlight in the darkness, suddenly you can see what you need to see—the path or your friends with you.
In the epistle reading today, Saint Paul writes to the early Christians, but he writes to us, too! He writes, “It is the God who said, ‘Let the light shine out of darkness,’ who has shone in our hearts to give the light of knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.” God wants light to shine in the world. That light is our Lord, Jesus Christ. He came into the world to be like a light, to bring joy and hope for everybody and everything. We can share this light of Christ around us, when we try to act like our Lord Himself. Then, we will be like a flashlight in a dark cave! Share the Light.
SAINT XENIA OF SAINT PETERSBURG, RUSSIA
We celebrate St. Xenia on Thursday, January 24th (Feb 6, OC).
Have you ever found yourself staring at somebody? Sometimes we can’t help staring at somebody who looks different or does funny things. Saint Xenia was a saint who probably had lots of people staring at her. She wore old rags for clothes. She didn’t have any money. She wandered the streets of the city. People stared at her. Saint Xenia wasn’t always that way. Learn about other Saints.
People stared at Saint Xenia because she did strange things. But then people started to pay attention to her, because they knew she was close to God. She loved God and she looked to God for everything. People asked her to pray for them, because they knew God listened to her prayers. We can pray to Saint Xenia for help too. She is a saint who helps especially to take care of children, and to help find a job!
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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