Popular In-Person Talks:
The Life-Giving Cross: Marriage, Parenting & Caregiving
When we answer our Lord’s call to be fruitful and multiply, we volunteer for martyrdom. Through sacrificial love for others (whether our children, spouses, aging parents or strangers), we learn to die to ourselves and to find true life in Christ. We’ll explore thought patterns that impact our ability to grow in Christ, and how taking on Christ’s yoke lightens the burden of the crosses we carry. Further, we’ll ask how we need to take care of the caregivers, and what Orthodox Self-Care might mean.
My Cup Runneth Over: What is Orthodox Self-Care?
(Usually given at Women’s Retreats). Whether we are in chronically difficult situations or simply being torn apart by a hectic, busy routine, women tend to take care of themselves last. In a culture where self-care can be confused with trips to the spa and long baths, what would real self-care look like? Is there such a thing as Orthodox self-care? How can we embrace it and even prioritize it?
The Trouble with Bulletproof Kids
Parents are called to co-create life with God and then to help nurture and steward that child of God into a fruitful life in the Body of Christ. That’s a tall order, and perhaps it requires a leap of faith — so it should be no surprise that sometimes our fears get in the way and interrupt the miraculous work God is trying to do with our children.
Teaching the Story: Equipping the Saints
For Sunday school teachers: from the most ancient teachings to modern pedagogy, storytelling is a powerful tool to reach a child’s heart. We’ll discuss ways to bring the stories of the Holy Scriptures and the lives of Saints to life, so that we can transmit the living faith to our students.
Preserve Thine Inheritance: Raising Saints in a Post-Christian World
Studies show that many young adults are leaving the Church, and also that a parent’s faith experience is a critical factor in whether the child grows up to embrace or abandon the Church. How can parents, who have become accustomed to outsourcing much of their children’s formation, become the examples their children need? What can the parish do to support families and to embrace young people? How do we best interact with young people who are struggling with the faith or experiencing doubt? How can we best encounter this new age, where being Christian is no longer the default?
Thoughts on Gender Roles and Anxiety
As Orthodox Christians in a modern, secular culture, we are keenly aware that we are influenced by non-Orthodox culture all the time. In surveys of Orthodox parents, I have found that women especially worry about whether our modern mindset is Orthodox enough — are we just doing everything wrong?
At YCC 2017, I discussed an approach to youth ministry that not only asks us to view parents as partners, but which makes parents themselves the targets of ministry — because one of the best things the Church can offer our youth is good and holy parents.
At The Orthodox Family in a Changing World, the Center for Family Care’s second Family Ministry Conference, held in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania, I spoke about the meaning of Family Ministry and how the Church can support families and produce real Christians who minister to one another.
On this site’s menu, in the Info section, you’ll find resources for scheduling and advertising speaking engagements, including my bio, some downloadable images for fliers and the like, guidelines and suggestions for planning an event, and a Contact Form to inquire about scheduling.