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Raising Saints

Raising Saints Educating Our Youth in the Orthodox Faith, Both at Home and in the Parish

Start date: June 2012 50 episodes

“Raising Saints” with Elissa Bjeletich offers tools to bring the Orthodox Christian faith to life for our children. Providing specific ways to express complex ideas to children so that they can understand and make them their own, and offering concrete and practical suggestions to reinforce those ideas, this podcast hopes to equip adults to share the faith with children, shaping the way in which our youth understand their lives. This podcast is for parents, grandparents, and godparents, for Sunday School teachers and for those working in the Youth Ministries—for anyone interested in shepherding our youth along the path to God.

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Episodes

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Date Title & Description Duration        
Oct 16, 2014

Death and Dying: Talking to Kids

Elissa offers some suggestions for guiding children through death and dying.

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20:20
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Oct 02, 2014

Seeing the Church in a Circus

Elissa is teaching middle schoolers this year at Sunday school, and she will be using the film The Butterfly Circus as the grounding image.

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15:38
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Sep 13, 2014

Does God Have a Plan for You?

Elissa reminds us that it is our job to make our free will line up with God's will.

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20:27
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Aug 14, 2014

Orthodox Ecosystem

Elissa reminds us that the body of Christ is a living organism, and we remove pieces of it to the detriment of the whole.

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11:54
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Jul 10, 2014

Modern Comforts

Citing the writings of Elder Paisios of the Holy Mountain, Elissa demonstrates how the conveniences we have invented to make life easy have actually made it quite a bit harder.

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18:46
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Jun 13, 2014

The Life-Giving Cross: Marriage and Parenting

Elissa discusses Orthodox marriage and parenting, focusing particularly on how both involve dying to self.

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17:07
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May 15, 2014

Teaching the Story

Elissa shares with us how to get our kids to the place where their worldview is totally dependent on the Christian story.

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16:55
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May 07, 2014

Christian Gonzalez on Youth Ministry

Elissa interviews Christian Gonzalez, the California deanery youth director of the Antiochian Diocese of Los Angeles and the West, about how we need to rethink our approach to ministering to our youth.

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54:52
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Apr 24, 2014

The Light of Pascha

Elissa reminds us that we are temples of God, meant to light up and become a lamp for the world.

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10:01
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Apr 10, 2014

Traditions of Holy Week and Pascha

Elissa shares some of the youth-centric traditions of her home parish with regard to Holy Week and Pascha.

25:30
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Mar 20, 2014

The Devil’s Fast

If you are fasting from meat and dairy products, but you are not praying, studying the word of God, and making an effort to show love and charity, then your fast looks a lot like the devil's fast.

9:02
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Mar 06, 2014

The Triumph of Orthodoxy: Icons in the Church!

The Sunday of Orthodoxy offers us an opportunity to discuss with our kids the Orthodox understanding of the materiality of this world and its potential for holiness.

14:25
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Feb 13, 2014

Prayer Groups: the Psalter and the Blessings of Intercession

Elissa describes the "Psalter group" and its purpose during Great Lent.

18:48
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Jan 30, 2014

Noah’s Ark: Why We Go to Church

Elissa tells the complete story of Noah's Ark to demonstrate how doing so can be used to teach children about why we go to—and participate in the disciplines of—the Holy Orthodox Church.

18:47
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Jan 16, 2014

St. John the Forerunner:  Repent!

Elissa demonstrates how talking about St. John the Forerunner can be a great way to illustrate and understand the roles of the prophets and the saints all at once.

21:36
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Dec 20, 2013

Praying for Our Children II: In God’s Hands

Elissa discusses the story of Abraham and Isaac and her favorite prayer for children.

12:50
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Dec 05, 2013

Praying for Our Children I: St. Porphyrios

Elissa shares the wisdom of the newly canonized St. Porphyrios with regard to raising up children.

7:22
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Nov 14, 2013

Exams? Examining St. Euphrosynos

Elissa addresses the issue of testing Sunday School students.

10:49 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download rs_2013-11-14.mp3
Oct 30, 2013

YES! Teaching Our Youth to Live the Gospel

Elissa details what she and her parish learned when FOCUS North America's Youth Equipped to Serve (YES) came to visit Austin, Texas.

19:29
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Oct 10, 2013

On Being Imperfect

Elissa expresses how important it is to be honest and humble when teaching children, freely showing our imperfections.

18:25
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Sep 27, 2013

The Devil

Elissa reminds us that Satan is real and we should discuss him with our kids.

18:03
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Sep 12, 2013

Tattletale

Elissa asks, "If the devil's goal is to isolate us from each other and to make us miserable, do you think he is for or against tattling?"

12:35
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Aug 29, 2013

Humming Theology: The Cherubic Hymn

Elissa talks about the new hymnology program at her parish in Austih, TX, and then discusses the Cherubic Hymn.

14:03
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Aug 18, 2013

Camp St. Sava: Talking about Miracles and the Butterfly Circus

Elissa recounts her week at Camp St. Sava, the official Orthodox summer camp of the Serbian Orthodox Church's Western American Diocese.

12:44
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Jul 18, 2013

Saved in Community

Elissa discusses the ways in which it is helpful for our children to have an understanding of how even the imperfections of the people we meet are an important part of how God saves us.

14:34
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Jun 20, 2013

That’s Not Fair!

Elissa reminds us that if God were fair, we would be in big trouble.

14:04
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Jun 06, 2013

The Little Church in Your House

Elissa addresses the little church of the family unit, reminding us that learning to live the Faith shouldn't stop during the summer.

13:29
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May 09, 2013

And Upon Those in the Tombs

Elissa encourages families to spread the joy of Pascha to a local cemetery.

9:18
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Apr 25, 2013

Let Pascha’s Drama Unfold

Elissa encourages parents and Sunday school teachers to stress the importance of Pascha by sharing in its fullness the story that leads up to Christ's Resurrection.

13:54
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Apr 11, 2013

The Old Testament

Let’s not just offer little Bible Stories as morality tales. Let’s instead help our children to encounter the Scriptures in their wholeness, finding Christ in the Old and the New.

11:46
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Mar 28, 2013

Spring Cleaning for the Soul

Elissa encourages us to teach our children to view their souls as habitations for our Lord.

11:20
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Mar 08, 2013

Teaching Why We Fast

Elissa offers some suggestions for teaching children about the purpose of fasting.

11:24
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Feb 21, 2013

Parables That Prepare: Part 2

Elissa presents part two of her brief series on preparing for Lent.

16:30
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Feb 08, 2013

Parables That Prepare: Part 1

Elissa offers ideas for teaching during the three-week period of preparation for Great Lent (which is itself a preparation) to ensure that our kids benefit from the Church's wise preparation before the preparation.

18:53
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Jan 24, 2013

Heaven and Hell

Elissa shares some examples of how to teach children about the Orthodox understanding of heaven and hell.

12:58 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download rs_2013-01-24.mp3
Jan 10, 2013

Lessons Kids Keep

When teaching Orthodoxy to children, our goal is not just to make sure that our kids know things about our faith, but rather to shepherd them in their faith. So how do we do that? Elissa shares a few ideas.

15:25
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Dec 28, 2012

Teaching Theophany

Elissa offers various ideas for communicating the glorious feast of Theophany to children.

19:47
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Nov 28, 2012

Giving in Secret

Elissa describes how the life of St. Nicholas can be used as an inspiration to give anonymously.

15:17
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Nov 15, 2012

Gratitude

Elissa offers some suggestions for teaching gratitude to our children.

12:28
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Nov 01, 2012

The Nativity Fast

Elissa encourages us to participate fully in the Nativity fast in order to prepare our hearts for Christ.

11:31 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download rs_2012-11-01.mp3
Oct 18, 2012

Halloween and St. Cyprian

Elissa shares how to use the lives of the Saints to combat children's fears.

13:31 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download rs_2012-10-17.mp3
Oct 04, 2012

How Do You Know That There’s a God?

Elissa explains how to help children who struggle with doubt about the existence of God.

14:46 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download rs_2012-10-04.mp3
Sep 20, 2012

Children in Church

Elissa explains how to be responsible for a child during the Divine Liturgy.

19:29 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download rs_2012-09-20.mp3
Sep 06, 2012

Sanctifying Time

Elissa explains how it is that God has no beginning and no end and what that tells us about Him.

18:30
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Aug 23, 2012

Back to School

Elissa encourages us to allow this season—the beginning of the new school year—to be one that sanctifies us and changes us for the better.

18:42
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Aug 09, 2012

The Monastery in Our Hearts

Elissa demonstrates how the idea of the monastery is a very useful illustration to help all of us, especially our youth, understand how to be Orthodox in this world.

14:59
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Jul 26, 2012

Prayers of Holy Communion

Elissa explains how to use images from existing pre-communion prayers to help children prepare themselves for the Holy Mysteries.

16:18
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Jul 12, 2012

Prosphora and Theosis

Elissa explains how to use the baking of prosphora to talk with children about theosis, which she calls "the meaning of life."

18:00 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download rs_2012-07-12.mp3
Jun 28, 2012

Teaching Prayer to Children

Elissa encourages us to develop a vocabulary to communicate the significance of prayer in terms children can understand and then offer opportunities to put it into practice.

14:12 Transcript Available Direct link (play in browser) Play in Popup Download rs_2012-06-28.mp3
Jun 13, 2012

Introduction

Elissa explains that the purpose of her podcast is to present ideas for educating our youth in the Orthodox faith—to identify new ways to talk about ancient Truths.

5:02
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