Committee for Youth


The vision of The Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops' Committee for Youth is to recognize, understand, strengthen, and unify the numerous youth ministry efforts across America to establish a model of Orthodox youth and family formation which will lead, with one voice, young people to salvation through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

In executing this vision, the Committee of Youth will complete tasks assigned by the Assembly of Bishops, including i) identifying and cataloging all jurisdictional youth programs (camps, age specific groups, etc.); ii) identifying and cataloging all joint youth programs (e.g. OCF); and iii) developing models for coordinating youth-oriented activities and programs that both minimize duplication and maximize the participation of young people in the life of the Church.

The Committee has also tasked itself to i) gather information from parishes, priests, youth workers, parents, and youth to establish the needs of the faithful with regard to youth formation, and ii) research existing Orthodox Christian resources on youth formation, in order to begin work on developing a new cohesive model for youth formation from birth to adulthood.


Bp. Thomas (AOCA) - Chairman
Met. Alexios (GOA) 
Bp. Irineu (OCA)

Committee Liaison

V. Rev. Nicholas Ceko 


Fr. Joseph Purpura - Facilitator
Dn. Mark O'Dell - Secretary
Fr. Angelo Artemas
Fr. Athanasios Haros
Fr. Bratislav Krsic
Fr. Michael Nasser
Fr. Nicolae Clempus
Fr. Michael Shanbour
Fr. Andrei Sommer
Fr. Anthony Yazge
Protodeacon Joseph Matusiak
Fr. Evagoras Constantinides
Andrew Boyd
Katrina Bitar
Gerry Clonaris
Eva Kokinos
Presbytera Marilisse Mars
Natalie Kapeluck Nixon
Presbytera Kathleen Purpura
Thomas Rosco
Marek Simon
Bryan Smith
George Boulukos
Michael Pacurar 

Terms of Reference

What is to be accomplished 

  • Produce a list of all Orthodox youth and college-age programs (diocesan and national) in the United States, with reference to their program descriptions
  • Define characteristics to describe and compare the different programs (camps, retreats, youth groups, college groups, mission outreach, church schools and educational materials, etc.)
  • Produce and document a comparison of the youth and college-age programs with respect to the above pre-defined comparative characteristics
  • Develop models for coordinating among programs that fall within the same pre-defined comparative characteristics
  • Consider models for possible amalgamation of redundant programs to minimize duplication
  • Identify what proper tools and resources are needed to ensure proper spiritual formation for Orthodox youth
  • Develop a cohesive model of youth formation

How it is to be accomplished 

  • Determine at the outset, and update regularly, the timetable for accomplishment of the Committee’s objectives
  • Contact individuals within the jurisdictions responsible for youth and college-age programs as also well-known national programs (e.g. OCF) and request pertinent information
  • Construct a matrix of comparative characteristics for youth and college-age programs
  • Complete the matrix, and catalog and compare the programs and their purposes, content and activities
  • Review and confirm the matrix with the jurisdictions and national programs to ensure agreement upon the results
  • Publish the results for the Assembly and Church at large
  • Conduct research, including surveys as needed, to identify existing tools and resources, as well as unfulfilled needs for forming an Orthodox spiritual understanding for youth

With whom it is to be accomplished

  • The responsible parties for youth and college-age programs within each jurisdiction
  • The responsible parties for national programs

News and Events

Committee for Youth 2014 Annual Report

Friday, November 21, 2014
The 2014 Annual Report of the Committee for Youth is now available online. read more »

Committee for Youth 2013 Report

Friday, December 20, 2013
The 2013 annual report of the Committee for Youth is now available online. read more »

Assembly Committee Fosters Relationships, Unity of Purpose on Youth Programs

Tuesday, March 26, 2013
New relationships and unity among Orthodox Christian youth workers are the result of diligent efforts by the Committee for Youth, one of the very active committees of the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of North and Central America. read more »

Youth Committee 2012 Annual Report

Monday, February 04, 2013
The 2012 annual report of the Committee for Youth is now available online. read more »

Annual Reports from Committees for Youth, Financial Affairs

Friday, March 09, 2012
Annual reports are available online from the Committee for Youth and the Committee for Financial Affairs. read more »

Semi-Annual Committee for Youth Meeting January 2012

Tuesday, January 31, 2012
The Committee for Youth of the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of North and Central America held its semi-annual meeting on January 24th and 25th, 2012. The meeting convened at the Antiochian Village Heritage and Learning Center, Bolivar, PA, in conjunction with the Committee for Youth read more »

January 2012 Orthodox Christian Youth Worker Conference

Wednesday, November 16, 2011
This historic gathering will be held Wednesday January 25 to Saturday January 28, 2012 at the Antiochian Village Conference Center in Bolivar, Pennsylvania, and will be hosted by the Departments of Youth Ministry and of Camping of the Antiochian Archdiocese. read more »

OCF Chaplains Conference – Shaping the Future of Campus Ministry

Wednesday, May 23, 2007
Orthodox Christian Fellowship (OCF) held its annual Chaplains Conference for clergy and lay leaders May 1-3, 2007 at the Antiochian Village Conference Center in Ligonier, PA. This retreat brought together twenty five clergy and lay OCF chaplains from throughout North America. read more »

Paleologos Graduate Scholarship Program Established at Archdiocese

Wednesday, May 09, 2007
A new graduate scholarship program has been established at the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America by Peter and Elli Malta Paleologos to assist students enrolled in professional graduate studies and other helping professions. read more »

OCN Partners With Fellow SCOBA Agencies To Address Virginia Tech Tragedy

Friday, April 27, 2007
Orthodox Christian Network partnering with fellow SCOBA agencies OCF and IOCC, will present special programming all next week (April 30-May 5) concerning our Orthodox Christian response to the tragic events at Virginia Tech on April 16 of this year. read more »

OCF Responds to Tragedy at Virginia Tech

Thursday, April 19, 2007
Prayers, resources, and outreach to the local Orthodox Christian Fellowship (OCF) chapter at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech) are part of the response OCF has mounted to address the horrific tragedy that occurred on the 16th of April in Blacksburg, Virginia, which resulted in the loss of 33 human lives. Although it has been reported that all of the OCF students are safe, some of the students lost friends and acquaintances in the shooting. read more »

2007-08 Katina John Malta Scholarship Applications Available

Wednesday, April 18, 2007
Applications are available for the Katina John Malta Scholarship Fund, a scholarship program established at the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America by means of a generous gift from the estate of Katina John Malta. The donation and the formation of the scholarship program has been done in recognition of the love Katina had for the Church and in honor of the desire she had to help others, especially children and youth of the Orthodox Christian Faith. At least two scholarships of $2,000 each will be awarded for the 2007-08 academic year. read more »

Twelve Real Breaks, Eight Locations, 104 Students and ONE focus– Christ

Monday, April 16, 2007
Throughout late February and March, 2007, 104 college students chose to serve the poor, orphaned and those in need on their spring break as an alternative to the traditional “sun and fun” breaks that college students normally choose. Orthodox Christian Fellowship’s (OCF) Real Break program held twelve trips and served eight different locations this year. Real Break provides an opportunity for college students to actively engage in life-changing experiences and to orient their lives towards Christ. read more »

OCMC Missionary Ed Pier Reports From Guatemala

Friday, March 09, 2007
Orthodox Christian Mission Center (OCMC) missionary, Edwin Pier, has been serving in Guatemala since last year. Mr. Pier’s story will be one of many that we profile throughout the year to keep you informed regarding the many ministries of the missionaries that you have sent to witness for Christ. Last December, he filed the following report detailing the incredible work that is being done at the Hogar Rafael Ayau Orphanage in Guatemala City. read more »

Virginia H. Farah Foundation sponsors “A Conference on Orthodox Schools”

Tuesday, March 06, 2007
“We all hope to incline our students toward Christ, to prepare them to live well in this world, and to share our faith with a generation looking for stability in the shifting sands of the American cultural landscape. We at St. Peter’s invite everyone interested in Orthodox Schools to join us this summer as we examine the principles that will keep us consistent with our faith, as well as the practical skills that will keep our lamps trimmed and burning.” read more »

OCF's Next Big Direction: Board Takes Steps To Ensure the Longevity of the Ministry

Thursday, December 14, 2006
The Board of Directors of Orthodox Christian Fellowship (OCF), meeting at its regularly scheduled fall meeting, took important steps to insure that the vital ministry now being offered for college students will continue perpetually. The revitalized ministry is in its 5th year of operation, following a three-decade lapse as an organized Orthodox North American ministry to college students. read more »

Community & Parents Rejoice in Sending Their Young Adults on Orthodox Mission Teams

Monday, October 16, 2006
The Mission Center commends the dedication of the Church of the Annunciation community in Buffalo , New York , as it rejoices in its efforts to support Orthodox missions throughout the years. read more »

Orthodox Bishops' Conference Statement Concerning Recent School Violence

Thursday, October 12, 2006
We express our sincere concern over the ever-increasing acts of violence that have been perpetrated in the schools of this nation. We call upon all civil and religious leaders to address this evil that has caused these tragic incidents. read more »

College Student Sunday Encyclical, September 17, 2006

Friday, September 08, 2006
For many students, the college years are perhaps the most formative ones in life. The task of learning how to balance study and recreation, the prospect of encountering challenging ideas in the classroom, the idea of living in close quarters with a roommate who might offer an entirely foreign worldview or perspective on life, and the first encounter with total and complete freedom outside the family environment can be altogether exciting experiences for the college student. However, they can also be quite confusing and disorienting. read more »

OCF Growth Surges: First Full-time Executive Director in 30 years and Charlotte Area Chaplain Hired

Thursday, August 31, 2006
Orthodox Christian Fellowship (OCF) continues its fantastic growth as a vital ministry of the Orthodox Church with its recent full time hiring of Rev. Fr. Kevin Scherer as the Executive Director of OCF and Mr. John Stonestreet as full-time OCF Chaplain in Charlotte, North Carolina. Fr. Scherer will be the first full-time Executive Director since the initial establishment of Orthodox campus ministry over 30 years ago. read more »