St. John Chrysostom Oratorical Festival, Junior Division Winner, Athena Eleftheriou, on the Christian Attitude toward disabled people
Published March 18, 2013
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Greek Orthodox Christian teenagers each year are given an opportunity to shine at the St. John Chrysostom Oratorical Festival. They are given a choice of a number of topics for the Oratorical Festival, one of dealt, in the 2012 contest, with attitudes toward persons with disability.
The winner was Athena Eleftheriou, and her oratory can be read in an article from the April 8, 2012 Northeast Cobb Patch, written by her mother, Marilyn, Eleftheriou. Click here to access the article, and Athena’s oratory: Northeast Cobb Girl Wins St. John Chrysostom Oratorical Festival
The Oratory Guidelines for this particular topic:
St. John Chrysostom Oratorical Festival 2012
Topics, Tips, and Resources
Junior Division (Grades 7–9)
1. Many times in the New Testament, we see Jesus caring about the
blind, the paralyzed, and others with physical disabilities (for
example, Matthew 9:2 and 9:27–29). Following Christ’s footsteps,
discuss the Christian attitude toward disabled people.
A. Read the Church’s teachings:
Matthew 4:23–25, 8:1–13, 9:27–38, and 12:9–14; Mark 2:12; Luke 13:10–13
B. Consider the direction your speech might take. Here are some examples:
• Select several healing stories in the Bible and discuss whom it is that Christ heals.
What is the Church’s attitude toward the disabled? Talk about how the Church in
general and your local church are helping the disabled, and ways in which they
could be of further help.
• What is “disability” in the Bible? How does our society define the term? Who are the
disabled, according to Christ? Who are they in your eyes?
• We are created in the image and likeness of God. How does one carry that image
despite a physical disability?