I have found that church school students enjoyed playing games, especially the high schoolers! This game can be fun and a great way of reviewing what our students should know about the Paschal Lenten season.

Our Journey to Pascha is adapted from a game created by Karen K. Wasiseczko and distributed by the Department of Religious Education of the OCA in 1988. It was included in A Resource Handbook for Great Lent & Pascha that I compiled in 1989. Phyllis Meshel Onest, M.Div. (1/7/00)



OBJECT OF THE GAME: To be the first team to arrive at Pascha (icon of the Resurrection).


  1. All team markers are placed next to the first box (Publican & Pharisee).

  2. The first team draws a question. If the team gives the correct answer, its marker moves 2 squares forward. If the team answers incorrectly, its marker moves back one square or stays put if it's the first question for that team.
  3. Play continues to the right.



  1. What happened 40 days after Jesus' resurrection? / His ascension to the Father in Heaven.

  2. Which criminal was freed instead of Jesus? / Barabas
  3. On what day of the week did Jesus rise from the dead? Sunday, the first day of the week.
  4. Which thief joined Jesus in Paradise? / The one on the right.
  5. In the gospel story of the Publican & the Pharisee, who was humble? The publican.
  6. On Holy Tuesday we read the "Parable of the Wise & Foolish Virgins." What do we learn from this parable? / We must be ready at all times for Jesus' Second Coming.
  7. Who betrayed Jesus 3 times before the cock crowed? / Peter.
  8. What is the Gospel reading on the Sunday after Pascha? / Doubting Thomas.
  9. Exactly how long is Great Lent, i.e. from the first day to Pascha? / 47 days: 40 days plus Holy Week
  10. From what foods do we abstain during Great Lent? / Meat, dairy products & olive oil.
  11. List the names given to the four Pre-Lenten Sundays? / Publican & Pharisee; Prodigal Son; Last Judgment; Expulsion of Adam & Eve from Paradise or Forgiveness Sunday.
  12. Why is Holy Unction used? / For the healing of soul & body.
  13. What is another name for Cheese-Fare Sunday? / Forgiveness Sunday or The Expulsion of Adam & Eve from Paradise.
  14. What is another name for Meatfare Sunday? / Last Judgment.
  15. When did St. Gregory Palamas live? / 14th century.
  16. What is the difference between an "iconoclast" & an "iconophile"? / Iconoclast - enemy of icons; Iconophile - friend of icons.
  17. Who were Lazarus' sisters? / Mary & Martha.
  18. When Jesus' side was pierced by a soldier's sword, what gushed out? / Blood & water.
  19. On which Sunday of Great Lent do we remember St. Gregory Palamas? / 2nd.
  20. When is the Akathist service celebrated? / Fridays during Great Lent.
  21. What is Pentecost? / The 50th day after Pascha, when the Holy Spirit descended on the Apostles.
  22. In addition to food, the Church asks us to fast from...? / Gossip, anger, slander, jealousy, hatred, envy, revenge.
  23. Why are eggs a symbol of Pascha/Easter? / Just as Jesus rose from the dead & came out of the Tomb, so does new life come out of the egg which is its tomb.
  24. In which Garden did Jesus pray before He was betrayed? / Gethsemane.
  25. What does "prodigal" mean? / Exceedingly wasteful.
  26. Name the location where Jesus was crucified? / Golgotha.
  27. What service is held in the evening during on Sunday, Monday & Tuesday of Holy Week? / Bridegroom.
  28. Why did Pontius Pilate wash his hands? / To show that he was innocent of Jesus' blood.
  29. What book did St. John Climacus write? / The Ladder of Divine Ascent.
  30. How did Judas show the soldiers which man was Jesus when they were in the Garden of Gethsemane? / Judas gave Jesus a kiss.
  31. Re: fasting, St. John Chrysostom said: "Do not let only our mouth fast, but also..." / "your eyes, heart, ears, yours hands & your feet."
  32. Whose Liturgy is celebrated on the Sundays of Great Lent? / St. Basil's.
  33. What is characteristic of this Liturgy as compared to the Liturgy usually celebrated during the year? / It is longer & has more intense prayers.
  34. What did the Jews want the Romans to do to the tomb where Jesus was laid? / Seal it & place a Roman guard to watch it so no one would take the body.
  35. Why was Jesus Christ welcomed into Jerusalem with such enthusiasm on Palm Sunday? / They had heard that Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead.
  36. Who took Jesus' body down from the Cross? / Joseph of Arimathea. OR For what is Joseph of Arimathea remembered? / He requested the body of Jesus, prepared Him for burial with spices & oil & placed it in a new tomb [his].
  37. The soldiers came to the men on the crosses & broke the legs of the thieves who were still alive, but Jesus was already dead. What was done to Jesus instead? / His side was pierced with a sword.
  38. What does "repent" mean? / To sincerely & honestly want to change your ways.
  39. A good confession requires preparation. / Name 3 ways we can prepare for confession. / Prayer; fasting; evaluating ourselves in light of Christ's command to "be perfect"; make an honest effort to look at ourselves & our lives.
  40. God knows our weaknesses & our strengths. Why then is Confession necessary? / Confession needs to be said aloud in front of a witness [the priest], otherwise it is still a secret that we possess, one that can still bother us.
  41. What does the word "resurrection" mean? / To be lifted up; to rise.
  42. Where in the Scriptures can we read about Christ's resurrection? / Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke & John.
  43. The correct term for Easter is "Pascha." What does it actually mean? / Passover from death to life as did the Israelites when they fled Egypt.
  44. In St. Ephraim's Prayer, what do we call the Lord? / Master of our life.
  45. What did Christ mean when He said that He would destroy the Temple & build it again in 3 days? / His body would be destroyed on the Cross, but in 3 days He would rise & establish His kingdom.
  46. Who betrayed Jesus? / Judas Iscariot.
  47. What historical event is remembered on the first Sunday of Great Lent? / The return of the icons to Orthodox worship.
  48. Who were the first to learn of Jesus' resurrection? / The women disciples, also called the myrrh-bearing women.
  49. What did the soldiers place on Jesus' head before He was crucified? / A crown of thorns.
  50. On what kind of animal did Jesus ride when he entered Jerusalem? / Donkey, in particular, a foal.
  51. What to the goats in the gospel story of "the Last Judgment" represent? / Those who have not listened to God & as a result, will not be in the Kingdom of God.
  52. On which day of Holy Week do we remember the Last Supper? / Holy Thursday.
  53. When Jesus died on the cross, the earth reacted. What happened? / An earthquake & a solar eclipse.
  54. Who greeted the women at the tomb? / An angel [Matthew &Mark] or two angels [Luke & John].
  55. Name one thing Orthodox Christians should do during Great Lent in addition to fasting? / [1] pray more; [2] almsgiving/charity; [3] self-denial.
  56. What is blessed on the day after Lazarus Saturday? / Palm branches and/or pussywillows.
  57. What does the Jewish Passover commemorate? / The passage of the angel of death over the houses of the Israelites at the time they were in Egypt.
  58. On what day of Holy Week is the Sacrament of Unction offered? / Wednesday.
  59. Who helped carry Jesus' cross? / Simon of Cyrene.
  60. What is the Lenten liturgical color? / Purple.
  61. What is commemorated on the middle Sunday of Great Lent and why? / Adoration of the Cross. The cross is placed before us as an inspiration to continue our Lenten efforts so that we don't become discouraged, & to remind us that we are halfway through Lent.
  62. Who was the Empress who helped return the icons to their rightful place in Orthodox worship? / Theodora.
  63. Who wrote the famous Lenten prayer that begins " O Lord & Master of my life"? / St. Ephraim the Syrian.
  64. To which apostle did Jesus entrust His mother? / John the Beloved [also called the Evangelist & the Theologian].
  65. Which woman saint is remembered on the 5th Sunday of Lent and why? / St. Mary of Egypt. She is a model of repentance, of changing her life to become more Christ-like.
  66. While Jesus' body was in the tomb, where was His soul or spirit? / In Hades, preaching to those who had already died.
  67. On Holy Monday, Jesus tells us the Parable of the Fig Tree. What is the lesson to learn? / If we don't bear fruit, we won't enter the Kingdom of Heaven.
  68. What two food items did Jesus bless during the Last Supper? / Bread & wine.
  69. What was written on the sign placed above Jesus' head when He was on the Cross? / "Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews."
  70. On what themes do the services of Holy Friday focus? / Jesus' death & lying in the Tomb.
  71. How much was Judas paid to betray Jesus? / 30 pieces of silver.
  72. Which Roman governor tried Jesus? / Pontius Pilate.
  73. What service is celebrated on Wednesdays during Great Lent? Presanctified Liturgy.
  74. What was Jesus given to drink while he was on the cross? / Vinegar or gall.
  75. What is carried in procession on Holy Friday evening? The epitaphios or cloth icon depicting the burial of our Lord.
  76. What did the father do when his son returned in the gospel story of the Prodigal Son? / He gave him a ring, a coat, & offered a feast.
  77. How is the date of Pascha/Easter determined? / The first Sunday after the spring equinox, after Passover.
  78. Which Sunday Gospel announces the coming of the Lenten season? / Zaccheus.
  79. What is the difference between the Ascension of Our Lord and Pentecost? / The Ascension commemorates Jesus rising to God the Father on the 40th day after His resurrection. Pentecost commemorates the Descent of the Holy Spirit on the Disciples on the 50th day after Jesus' resurrection.
  80. What is a publican and why were they disliked? / A tax collector. Publicans were Israelites hired by the Romans to collect taxes. As a whole, Publicans were not well liked among the Israelites because many cheated the people and kept the extra money for themselves.