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Author Topic: Just a child becoming Orthodox?  (Read 866 times) Average Rating: 0
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TheodoraElizabeth3
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« on: March 24, 2011, 07:53:35 PM »

On another forum I frequent (non-religious, but with a religion section), a woman with a lower elementary aged child asked about which church to take her child, since he was showing an interest in Jesus and God. This was a household where Christianity isn't really practiced, more New Age-type stuff. Someone else who has attended Orthodox parishes, but is not Orthodox, suggested the mother take her son to an Orthodox parish since we go lighter on the hell and damnation thing - and that the boy might find friends and others to support him if he decides to be baptized. The mother doesn't believe Jesus is God, but her son is interested in Jesus and God, and she wants to support him.

I had to add my two cents that looking for an English-language parish might be a good thing, given the circumstances.

I also added that it might be a difficult thing for just such a young child to become Orthodox - and that now has me thinking - I can't even imagine a 6 yo converting to Orthodoxy himself without either parent being Orthodox and not even believing Christians. Orthodoxy is so much more a whole life than just going to church on Sunday, even for a young child. In addition, a child in such a family would pretty much only be "Sunday Orthodox" since I suspect getting to other services would be near impossible.

That doesn't even take into account that I really wonder if a priest would baptize a child in such a family.

Any thoughts?
« Last Edit: March 24, 2011, 07:54:37 PM by TheodoraElizabeth3 » Logged
genesisone
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« Reply #1 on: March 24, 2011, 08:04:05 PM »

I thought immediately of Isaiah 11:6 (SAAS): "...and a little child shall lead them." I know that passage is generally taken to be prophetic in regards to the Messiah, but...

If the child is taken to a healthy parish, the possibilities for evangelizing the rest of the family are very real. Yes, it would be difficult. But isn't it interesting how children often question such things. It is also true that a loving parent will try to give the child what he wants (hopefully within reason of course!).

Yes, the home might not be very conducive to Christian growth, but that's where the good selection of godparents (by the priest) can be a real asset. If in time the child shows that he clearly that he is really drawn to faith in Christ and has his parents' consent at least tacitly, then I would hope the priest would baptize him.

Unfortunately, without your having a direct connection to the situation, it's hard to grasp the entire situation.
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« Reply #2 on: March 24, 2011, 08:06:04 PM »

Suffer the little children to come to Me.

Who knows - perhaps this blessed little one's foray into Orthodoxy might mean an awakening of the rest of his family. The Lord does work in mysterious ways.
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Thankful
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« Reply #3 on: March 24, 2011, 08:21:35 PM »

I have heard our priest say he would baptize a child in this type of situation (if the parent/s were agreeable).
« Last Edit: March 24, 2011, 08:21:55 PM by Thankful » Logged

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« Reply #4 on: March 24, 2011, 11:17:41 PM »

It's not as if the child has to convert to attend, and if the mother will attend as well, so much the better.
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« Reply #5 on: April 03, 2011, 12:25:26 AM »

Simply attending wouldn't be different from the experience at most other Christian churches in the USA. Usually people don't look to participate in any sacramental rituals when they go to church. They are content to sing songs and listen to a lecture. The only real difference from this orientation is that there is a lot more singing and that the lectures tend to be very short.
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Maria
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« Reply #6 on: April 03, 2011, 12:35:26 AM »

On another forum I frequent (non-religious, but with a religion section), a woman with a lower elementary aged child asked about which church to take her child, since he was showing an interest in Jesus and God. This was a household where Christianity isn't really practiced, more New Age-type stuff. Someone else who has attended Orthodox parishes, but is not Orthodox, suggested the mother take her son to an Orthodox parish since we go lighter on the hell and damnation thing - and that the boy might find friends and others to support him if he decides to be baptized. The mother doesn't believe Jesus is God, but her son is interested in Jesus and God, and she wants to support him.

I had to add my two cents that looking for an English-language parish might be a good thing, given the circumstances.

I also added that it might be a difficult thing for just such a young child to become Orthodox - and that now has me thinking - I can't even imagine a 6 yo converting to Orthodoxy himself without either parent being Orthodox and not even believing Christians. Orthodoxy is so much more a whole life than just going to church on Sunday, even for a young child. In addition, a child in such a family would pretty much only be "Sunday Orthodox" since I suspect getting to other services would be near impossible.

That doesn't even take into account that I really wonder if a priest would baptize a child in such a family.

Any thoughts?

Actually, my son led us into Orthodoxy when he was but 9 years old.
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JimCBrooklyn
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« Reply #7 on: April 03, 2011, 10:11:23 AM »

On another forum I frequent (non-religious, but with a religion section), a woman with a lower elementary aged child asked about which church to take her child, since he was showing an interest in Jesus and God. This was a household where Christianity isn't really practiced, more New Age-type stuff. Someone else who has attended Orthodox parishes, but is not Orthodox, suggested the mother take her son to an Orthodox parish since we go lighter on the hell and damnation thing - and that the boy might find friends and others to support him if he decides to be baptized. The mother doesn't believe Jesus is God, but her son is interested in Jesus and God, and she wants to support him.

I had to add my two cents that looking for an English-language parish might be a good thing, given the circumstances.

I also added that it might be a difficult thing for just such a young child to become Orthodox - and that now has me thinking - I can't even imagine a 6 yo converting to Orthodoxy himself without either parent being Orthodox and not even believing Christians. Orthodoxy is so much more a whole life than just going to church on Sunday, even for a young child. In addition, a child in such a family would pretty much only be "Sunday Orthodox" since I suspect getting to other services would be near impossible.

That doesn't even take into account that I really wonder if a priest would baptize a child in such a family.

Any thoughts?

Actually, my son led us into Orthodoxy when he was but 9 years old.
Really? I'd love to hear this story. Is it on another thread somewhere?
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TheodoraElizabeth3
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« Reply #8 on: April 05, 2011, 10:44:57 PM »

Jim, as I mentioned at the beginning of my post, this was on a totally different forum - totally different website, which I'm not going to give out.
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JimCBrooklyn
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« Reply #9 on: April 06, 2011, 02:59:12 AM »

Jim, as I mentioned at the beginning of my post, this was on a totally different forum - totally different website, which I'm not going to give out.
I read that, I was talking to Maria, who said that her son led her family into Orthodoxy as a 9yr old.
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Thomas
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« Reply #10 on: April 06, 2011, 11:00:17 AM »

When my wife and I became Orthodox after being Mormon for 14 years and about 8 months of catechism, the priest asked us to teach Sunday School, He started us in the elementary age group , the next year he graduated us to the  middle school age group, and the third year he graduated us to the High School age group. After it was over he shared with us that he felt we needed "seasoning" and growth in our Orthodox belief. He had us learn how to teach the faith to children and by reading those  lessons  deprogramed us from Mormon beliefs and allowed us to grow into Adult Orthodox Christians. Such is the charism of a holy priest!

Thomas
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« Reply #11 on: April 06, 2011, 03:51:58 PM »

wow, amazing stories!
children certainly can have a very strong experience of God, i first believed when i was 5 (was protestant, am now orthodox), although my parents got there ahead of me. they were brought up atheist.
may God be glorified in the lives of all these children mentioned, and may it remind us to never withhold the mysteries of God from small children. the children in my church have a beautiful and strong love for God, which encourages me to love Him and trust him like a little child.
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Maria
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« Reply #12 on: April 07, 2011, 03:08:43 AM »

Jim, as I mentioned at the beginning of my post, this was on a totally different forum - totally different website, which I'm not going to give out.
I read that, I was talking to Maria, who said that her son led her family into Orthodoxy as a 9yr old.

I will have to search but that will take some time, or you can search my posts as I have posted about this in several threads here.
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