Chrysostom Academy is an Orthodox private school providing a classical, Christian education for students based in Bethlehem, PA.
Chrysostom Academy will open in the Fall of 2022 and will offer grades 1st through 9th Grade, with the intention to add one grade per year until the School is 1st through 12th Grade.
Students will be immersed in a culture which puts love of learning and love of God at the center of all academic pursuits. Subjects like Literature, Grammar, History, Math, and Science will be studied as goods in and of themselves without regard for their real or apparent utility. In addition, students will learn to recognize Truth, Goodness, and Beauty in all facets of life, understanding that these transcendentals point to objective realities which can be known and understood as humans.
What is Classical Education?
To the classical mind, all knowledge is interrelated. Chrysostom Academy of Lehigh Valley provides a vigorous classical curriculum steeped in the greatest texts and wisdom of the past. It supports the ongoing conversation of great minds throughout history.
By classical education, we are not defining a pedagogy, for there really is no “classical” way of teaching. Teaching is teaching, classical is classical. When we say classical, we are specifically pointing to that body of wisdom and that canon of texts which has its foundation in the ancient world, found harmony, synthesis, and completion with Christianity, and which even to this day is the foundation upon which all true learning is based. It seeks after the Divine (either voluntary or involuntary) by contemplating the good, the beautiful, and the true, and encourages us to know ourselves; for only in knowing ourselves, can we overcome our fallen human nature and be truly wise. In addition, it supports students in their quest to know Beauty, Goodness, and Truth.
The mind and soul of each child is formed through an encounter with Beauty and beautiful things as the foundation of their recognition of Goodness and Truth. The Beautiful is heard in the music of the great composers, recited in the words of the poets, and seen in the natural world. As students begin to recognize Beauty in the created world, Wonder and Imagination are sparked, thereby leading students to pursue Goodness and Truth.
Knowing and being able to recognize Truth allows the mind to be brought into accord with what is real. The building blocks of learning are set when students are presented with the basics of language, stories of history and literature, descriptions of plants and animals and the human body, the facts of mathematics, and so much more. In this pursuit, the student discovers that Truth leads to Christ, who as the God-man is Truth Himself.
Chrysostom Academy students will understand that there are many “goods” in the world and the degree to which something is better or worse depends on its reflection and embodiment of Goodness. For them, Goodness is not a mere abstraction but a living, breathing reality.
Students of all faith traditions are welcome. As a Classical Orthodox school, Chrysostom Academy will provide students with a solid Orthodox Christian foundation and will help students build truly meaningful and impactful lives in the world around them.
A Message From Our Headmaster
Dear Lehigh Valley Community,
I am blessed and excited to introduce you to the Chrysostom Academy. The Chrysostom Academy will inspire students to think deeply about the world around them, to contemplate the ideas and images of God’s created order, and to pursue intellectual and spiritual excellence in a community of learners and friends. The school will be distinctly Classical and Orthodox, moving students to an understanding of their faith, their traditions, and most importantly, themselves.
I invite you to come and explore what Chrysostom Academy can offer you and your students. I am honored to be serving you and our community and hope to see you soon!
Mr. John Heitzenrater, II A.B., M.H.M.
Chrysostom Academy is a project of the Lehigh Valley Orthodox Clergy Brotherhood. The School’s board is comprised of lay and clergy members from the eight Orthodox Christian parishes located in the Valley.
- Fr. Alexandros Petrides – Chairman
- Salma Zaoudeh – Vice President
- Fr. Thomas Underwood – Board Member
- Dn. Patrick Maher – Treasurer
- Dr. Nicholas Tatalias – Secretary
- Walter Milinichik
The Executive Committee extends special thanks to Dr. Cyril Jenkins for his role as Founder of Chrysostom Academy.
Serving The Lehigh Valley
Conveniently Located off of Bridle Path Road in Bethlehem, moments from Route 22 and Route 191/Center Street, the school is able to serve the entire Lehigh Valley community. The extensive 50+ acre campus is shared with the St. Francis Center for Renewal.
Orthodox Christianity, good works and the presence of the Divine are not just a class or a box to be checked off, but are best woven into the fabric of daily life. Students will participate in and eventually lead in daily prayer, moments of silence, and contemplation. In addition, students will attend the celebration of the Divine Liturgy on feast days of the Church as well as be fully formed by the Church’s rich liturgical year.
Chrysostom Academy is committed to student, faculty, and staff safety. With all recommended safety procedures and policies in place, Chrysostom Academy will offer In-Person learning. Through partnership with the Bethlehem Health Bureau, Chrysostom Academy abides by all CDC, state, and local COVID-19 safety recommendations, and only enrolls class sizes safely able to be welcomed for full in-person education.