HG Bishop Ioan Casian virtually with children, teachers and camp monitors to celebrate June 1st – International Children’s Day
With the blessing of His Grace Bishop Ioan Casian, on the weekend of May 30-31, around June 1 the International Children’s Day, the children who participated in the two camps organized by the Romanian Orthodox Diocese of Canada – St. Theodore of Sihla in Ontario, and St. Andrew – the Apostle of Quebec met with some of Sunday school teachers and the organizers and monitors of these camps in two virtual sessions to celebrate this day together.
HG Bishop Ioan Casian blessed the youngest and offered them few spiritual reflections. Guests for the encounter were the older young people from ROYA who spoke about their experiences and their growth in and through the Church over the years since the first camps in 2003 near New York. A short photographic presentation was made with images from these camps when those present were able to enjoy remembering the moments spent together. The children had the opportunity to interact with each other and with the teachers and monitors in the camps.
The joy of praying together, painting icons, making friends and a lot of optimism, jokes, camp songs, sports competitions were the memories unraveled and revisited in the pictures from previous years. Full of enthusiasm and overflowing energy, all the children who participated in the camps protected by St. Theodora of Sihla in the province of Ontario were happy to see each other again on the social network Zoom where they exchanged impressions and shared their experiences in recent months. They were able to find out from the elders, now part of the youth organization ROYA, what it means to be a young Orthodox with Romanian roots in the two eparchies of the Romanian Orthodox Metropolia of the Americas, they discussed how to continue this year’s edition of the camp as well as charitable projects for disadvantaged children in Canada and Romania.
At the meeting of the children from Québec, a recapitulation of the five groups of children with the names of monasteries from Romania was made: Rohia, Cozia, Sihăstria, Prislop and Dervent. Also, they all viewed photos from the first family camp in the Romanian Orthodox Diocese of Canada initiated by HG Ioan Casian and from the pedagogical day, listening at the same time to a classic Bach song performed by the young Theo. The activities of the children’s chess club were also mentioned, which are currently taking place online (https://www.chesskid.com/) and the winners of the competitions were presented.
As in all camps in previous years, the hardest moment was the parting. In the atmosphere of goodwill, joy and enthusiasm, the Romanian Orthodox / Canadian Squad Team was created, which will prepare another online meeting.
At the end of the meeting, the children were congratulated with the song: Happy birthday! on the occasion of International Children’s Day.