OCA Releases New Children’s Activity Book on Saints

January 26, 2010

SYOSSET, NY [OCA] — The third in a series of activity books for children and parents is now available for downloading free of charge at dce.oca.org/page/activity-books.

Developed and written by several members of the Orthodox Church in America’s Department of Christian Education, the book is titled “Saints Commemorated in the Litiya Prayers.”

“Like earlier books in the series, it contains biographical stories and iconographic drawings of 12 saints, maps of their travels or the areas in which they lived, discussion questions, and puzzles and activities relating to each story. Quotations from or about each saint, photographs of those saints who lived in recent times, and a glossary round out the activity book.

Among the 12 saints presented in the new volume are the fourth century Ambrose of Milan and Catherine of Alexandria, the 11th century Anthony of the Caves in Kyiv, the 15th century Jonah of Moscow, and the late 19th/early 20th century Nicholas of Japan.

In the book’s informative and engaging introduction, the Litiya is historically defined and described as “a section of Vespers that culminates in the blessing of bread, wheat, wine and oil for the strengthening of the faithful who then continue in worship during a Vigil.” It goes on to read that the selection of saints in this volume was “specifically inspired by a popular composite of names used during Vespers in many American Orthodox communities.”

“Saints Commemorated in the Litiya Prayers” is geared to pre-teens and teens, although with parental guidance it also can also be useful for younger children. Like the first two books, it offers a variety of ways for young people, with their different learning styles, to get to know the lives of a very diverse group of saints.

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