Feast Days, Lent, Pascha

Come Out of the Tomb, Lazarus!

Lent has begun and I’m sure you’re thinking about activities you can do with your children or Church School students. I know I am! Every year we have a Lazarus Saturday event at the church for the kids and I wondered if others might do the same thing. Here are a few engaging activities you might want to try at home or in your classroom.

Fun Facts about St. Lazarus

Lazarus was 33 when Jesus raised him from the dead. This occured near the Mount of Olives. There is a mosque, a Catholic Church and a Greek Orthodox Church near his 1st tomb. Click here for images of the tomb.

Some time after Jesus’s Resurrection, Lazarus was forced to flee Judea. There were rumors going around that there were people who wanted to murder him. He fled to Cyprus where he lived for over 30 years. While there St. Paul appointed him the first bishop of Kition, which is now called Larnaka. This is where he was buried for the second time.

St. Lazarus missed the Theotokos and sent a ship to bring her to Cyprus to visit him. She brought him a gift – a bishop’s omophorion that she wove herself.

HIs feast day is October 17th.

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Our Kouvouklion and Epitaphios

Today as we prepare for Holy Friday services at home, we made our own Kouvouklion & Epitaphios! Please know that this was not my idea. Sotiria Stavropoulos created a Facebook video where she showed how to create it. I was so amazed by how beautiful it was and we decided to make our own! I have included instructions on how we did this. Some of the work will need to be done by an adult but there are also tasks kids can do. (more…)

Perler Bead Cross Gifts

At Christmas my kids love to make gifts for the people in our family. They are really into Perler Beads which are little plastic beads that you place on a peg board. You use an iron and a parchment type paper to melt the beads together. Today, I’m going to show you some of our cross designs.

These can be made into Christmas ornaments or necklaces. If you use glow in the dark beads, you can have your child write out the verse from John 8:12 on a tag to go with the gift: “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.” It can be put in a child’s room to remind them at night that Jesus protects them and keeps them safe.

Making these crosses is also a great gift idea for a child who likes to act out the liturgy at home. You could use yellow beads and I think they might make gold ones, too.

And of course, children love it when they can make something that adults can use. They can make a cross necklace for family members or themselves to wear. (more…)