Catechism Level 5: God’s Presence in His Saints
While our courses are no longer available for purchase on the website, St. Raphael School is open to inquiries about enrolling in courses at any time during the year. If you wish to enroll in a Yearlong course for the 2020-2021 school year after the official add/drop deadline (September 21), you will need to contact us directly. We will consider each request on a case-by-case basis after considering several factors, including size of the class, the preparedness of the student, the willingness of the instructor to accommodate a late addition to the class, and the content of the course. If you would like to submit a request for enrollment in an ongoing course, please visit our Contact Us page.
Two-Year Rotation: Click for Details
We offer four levels of catechism classes, each on a two-year rotation. This allows students to take up to 8 years of catechism classes without repeating any material. Students who have only taken one year of a given level are welcome and encouraged to take the second year before moving on.
Click here to view the scope and sequence of our Liberal Arts and Catechism Curricula.
In Level 5 Catechism, we delve deeper into the Scriptures. Over 2 years, students will read significant portions of the Old and New Testaments. Our only text for the class is the Orthodox Study Bible. Students will have assigned reading to be completed before class, on which class discussion will be based. In class, we will read and discuss together patristic commentaries on the passages we have read. We will focus our attention on the saints found in the Old and New Testaments with an interest in how later saints understood their lives and imitated their faith.
Besides the assigned reading, each semester students will complete a short biography of one of the saints covered. There also will be an end-of-semester exam to gauge how much the students have retained.
Specific Objectives: In Level 5 Catechism we want the student to:
- Learn to read the Bible for spiritual growth
- Understand how the Church interprets the Bible
- See and begin to understand the common experience of God in the Bible and in the lives of the Saints
- Develop a devotion for several of the Saints in the Bible
- The Orthodox Study Bible
*Required materials are not included in the purchase of the course.
Dn. Michael DeHaven began his teaching career as a graduate student at the University of Kansas in 2008 and has taught several subjects in different capacities since then. Prior to that, he served for a little more than 10 years in the Air Force (Security Forces) and spent some time in the IT world as a help desk analyst and later as an operations engineer.
He holds a BA in German from Washburn University and an MA and PhD in Germanic Languages and Literatures from the University of Kansas but started off his college adventure as a Physics major and still maintains an active interest in science. While still in graduate school, he completed the St. Stephen’s Course in Orthodox Theology and was ordained to the Deaconate by His Grace Bishop Basil on the Feast of Saints Peter and Paul in 2017.
Dn. Michael serves at Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church in Topeka, KS. He has been married to his wife Sandra since 1991 and has two grown daughters. In his spare time, he enjoys dabbling in languages, trying to improve his woodworking skills, and volunteering with the Civil Air Patrol. email@example.com
Elias Diamond received his B.F.A. in drama from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh in 2013, where he received training in playwriting, acting, design, and theatre history and criticism. He has written several plays which have received production in Pennsylvania and New York, including Sense and Senselessness (produced by Pittsburgh City Theater) and The Park Bench Hero (Manhattan Repertory Theater and Tangent Theater). His plays and poetry have received several awards, including Carnegie Mellon’s Adamson Award and recognition from the American Academy of Poets.
In addition, Elias holds a Master of Divinity from Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology, from which he graduated with highest honors. He has been blessed to be able to teach in the Crossroad program for two years in the past, and he currently works as a Pastoral Assistant at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Church in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. firstname.lastname@example.org
Sarah Smith– Shalom! Or should I say, שלום! My name is Sarah Smith and I am very excited to join St. Raphael School this year. I am a wife, a mom of two young kids, and an avid reader. I joined the Orthodox Faith with my Chrismation in 2019 along with my husband. Before I inquired into the Orthodox faith I was an associate pastor in the Method church – specially there to serve the youth. I love the honest questions, the search for truth, and the fun-loving nature of teenagers.
Old Testament is more than something I study – it’s my absolute passion! I received my BA in Biblical Studies at Olivet Nazarene University in 2013 and continued my education with an MDiv at Asbury Theological Seminary in 2017 where I spent all my electives on the Ancient Near East. Some of my specialties include Biblical archaeology – I spent a summer living in Israel digging at Tel Abel Beth Maacah – as well as Biblical Hebrew as I was the teaching assistant and grader for two years in Seminary).
I came into the Orthodox Faith by way of Old Testament study – when I first attended the Divine Liturgy I was brought to tears because I saw the worship of the Old Testament taking place in front of me. My year as a catechumen was spent wrestling with theological ideas and personal ideas I had to let go of, but I never looked back. Orthodoxy is a clear continuation of the Faith of our ancient ancestors. I’m excited to get to know you and I hope to see you in one of my classes! email@example.com
Computer: You will need a stable, reliable computer, running with a processor with a speed of 1 GHz or better on one of the following operating systems: Mac OS X with Mac OS 10.7 or later; Windows 8, 7, Vista (with SP1 or later), or XP (with SP3 or later). We do not recommend using an iPad or other tablet for joining classes. An inexpensive laptop or netbook would be a much better solution, as such devices enable you to plug an Ethernet cable directly into your computer. Please note that Chromebooks are allowed but not preferred, as they do not support certain features of the Zoom video conference software such as breakout sessions and annotation, which may be used by our teachers for class activities.
High-Speed Internet Connection: You will also need access to high-speed internet, preferably accessible via Ethernet cable right into your computer. Using Wi-Fi may work, but will not guarantee you the optimal use of your bandwidth. The faster your internet, the better. We recommend using a connection with a download/upload speed of 5/1 Mbps or better. You can test your Internet connection here.
Webcam: You may use an external webcam or one that is built in to the computer.
Headset: We recommend using a headset rather than a built-in microphone and speakers. Using a headset reduces the level of background noise heard by the entire class.
Zoom: We use a web conferencing software called Zoom for our classes, which enables students and teachers to gather from around the globe face to face in real time. Zoom is free to download and easy to use.
- Visit zoom.us/download.
- Click to download the first option listed, Zoom Client for Meetings.
- Open and run the installer on your computer.
- In August, students will be provided with instructions and a link for joining their particular class.
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This registration will be finalized when the student’s placement assessment has been returned by the course instructor with placement confirmation.