Office of Educational Services
Melkite Eparchy of Newton
Catechist formation and adult enrichment workshops are available to teach our Byzantine tradition and to enable people to enter fully into the life of our church through its proper expression of Holy Tradition.
Using exclusively Byzantine resources the Office of Educational Services with the support of Archbishop Bustros seeks to make Melkites more aware of their heritage, to be nourished by it and to witness to it in spiritually alive communities.
The early church was built up as a community of worship. of learning and of service. We have a Christian responsibility to learn, grow and teach as well as worship and praise God. In the Acts of the Apostles the Christian community is described as a worshipping people and also a people who adhere faithfully to the teachings of the apostles. It is a community devoted to the passing on of the Apostolic Tradition. While the handing on of the Tradition may be done in the liturgy, we need to be catechized in order to understand the presence of God hidden among us in the Liturgy.
To help achieve our goals, all our courses are accompanied with a text, facilitator’s guides, handouts, activities and self tests. The design of the workshops are lecture, group dynamics and interactive participation.
- Introduction to the Catechist Formation Program
- Text: Discerning Your Call
- This course focuses on the vocation of a Catechist, a brief history of catechesis, the Total Eastern Christian Formation and Development Program and the task of the catechist.
- The Elements of Holy Tradition
- Text: A stream of Living Water
- This course will examine the sources of our catechetical content (the scriptures, the Fathers, the Liturgy, Iconography, Creeds and Councils)This course will examine the meaning of Holy Tradition. The format of the Bible, the Fathers of the Church, the Creeds and Councils, Liturgy and Iconography are also discussed.
- Introduction to Eastern Theology
- Text: “With Eyes of Faith”
- A basic introduction to the major dogmatic themes of Eastern theology as expressed in the Nicene Creed and presented in the Church Fathers and liturgical texts.
- Introduction to Eastern Spirituality
- Text: The Face of God”
- A synopsis by Archbishop Joseph Raya of the doctrinal themes pervading Eastern Christian spiritual life: God’s inner life (theology), God’s love revealed (economy), the Church, and our response in worship.
- The Holy Mysteries in the Byzantine Churches
- Text: “Inexhaustible Delights”
- The work of Christ in His Body, the Church, as experienced through the Holy Mysteries, Christ the Victor over death, the living Bread, the Physical of souls and bodies is seen transforming those who participate in faith in these rites.
- An introduction to Eastern Catholic Church History
- Text: “To The Ends Of The Earth”
- This brief survey of Eastern Catholic Church history touches upon the following historical epochs: the Apostolic Period, the Ecumenical Councils, the development of the Byzantine Tradition, division and reunification of the Churches, Eastern Catholics in the West and in the modern period.
- The Old Testament – A Byzantine Perspective
- Text: “The Old Testament – A Byzantine Perspective”
- This course will examine the Old Testament text used in the Byzantine Churches, and the place of the Old Testament in our Liturgy and Spirituality. It will examine how the Church sees the Old Testament, why we as Christians study it and the style of writing within the various books. It will explore five themes prominent in the life of the church: creation, covenant, Passover, temple, and the Kingdom of God
- Morality and Contemporary Moral Issues
- Text: “Shown To Be Holy”
- An introduction to Eastern moral thought. Based on biblical rather than philosophical roots, Eastern moral thought rests on the understanding of our creation after the image and likeness of God, the restoration of that image in Christ and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
- Introduction to Eastern Liturgy
- Text: “Life and Worship”
- Explores liturgical worship, with insights into the Divine Liturgy, the daily cycle of praise, the feasts and fasts of the year, architecture and iconography, and the role of the various ministers in Eastern worship.
- The Apostolic Writings
- Text: “The Apostolic Writings – A Byzantine Perspective by John Custer”
- An overview of the Acts of the Apostles, the New Testament Epistles and the Revelation to John. A companion to the Holy Gospel: A Byzantine Perspective, this course seeks to be useful both as preparation for studying the Apostolic Writings or as a commentary to be consulted while reading the biblical texts.
- The Holy Gospels
- Text: “The Holy Gospel: A Byzantine Perspective by John Custer”
- This introduction to the study of the Gospels employs the perspective of the Greek Fathers and the liturgical usage of the Byzantine churches with reference to some conclusions of contemporary scholarship.
- Catechesis Forming a People
- Text: “Catechesis, Forming A People”
- This course presents an overview of catechesis in today’s parish and a look at appropriate goals for adult catechesis, youth ministry and children’s learning experiences in the church.
ONE DAY WORKSHOPS ARE ALSO ARRANGED UPON REQUEST.