Ascension's FAITH/JOY ministry provides the opportunity for children in grades K-5 to learn and grow in their faith.  Beginning September 15th, meetings take place once a month on a Friday evening, unless otherwise noted.  Each meeting will explore different topics and consist of a lesson on our faith, a craft, a snack and fun fellowship time.  We also hold several special events and participate in various service projects throughout the year.  Our theme this year will be The Miracles of Christ!

Friendships formed in youth groups have a tendency to last a lifetime.  Don't miss this wonderful opportunity to meet new families and friends and participate in the life of the Church!  For more information, contact


2023-2024 CALENDAR

Note:  Since Faith/JOY meets on Friday evenings, the snacks that we offer will always be fast-worthy for our children. Although your home fasting rules may be different, we encourage our children to begin learning about fast days, even from now.

Contact Pastoral Assistant John Anton at for more information.



+          FALL FANARI CAMP REGISTRATION JUST OPENED Fall Camp brings all of the fun of Fanari Summer Camp to fall! On October 6-8, Fanari Fall Camp will offer two age-based sessions for campers in 5th-8th grades.  More info at


View Photos from Youth Sunday 2023

View our Slide Show highlighting Youth Events throughout 2022

    CLICK HERE for information on Ascension's Parish Oratorical Festival program.  Express Your Faith! Represent your Parish! Do you like to write? Draw? Chant? Present your point in front of an audience? Don’t miss the opportunity to show your God-given talents as a writer, speaker, artist and vocalist by participating in the St. John Chrysostom Oratorical Festival. If you are in 4th – 12th grade, you are encouraged to participate in this program, which gives you the opportunity to reflect upon and express what your faith means to you.   In 2023, our Parish Festival took place on March 22nd and then Ascension hosted the Regional Oratorical Festival on Saturday, April 29 for the entire Metropolis of Chicago. 

  • JR. OLYMPICS TAKES PLACE EVERY MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND!  Jr. Olympics takes place at Saints Constantine & Helen Church, Palos Hills, with a full offering of more than 15 competitive events for youth between 7-18 years old.   For more information, visit our Jr. Olympics webpage.

    GOYANs and Jr. GOYANs look forward to this tradition of assembling college care packages for college freshmen each year from our parish. This long-standing tradition at Ascension lets our freshmen know we're thinking of them when they're away from home!  

  • FANARI CAMPS:  FALL, WINTER, LENTEN: Offered by the Metropolis of Chicago these camps take place at the St. Iakovos Retreat Center in Kansasville, WI  for 5th - 12th graders and activities include: Worship, Orthodox Life, Fun activities like Olympics, tubing, and much more! Stay tuned for more information and registration dates.
  • FANARI SUMMER CAMP Fanari Summer Camp is the Metropolis of Chicago summer camping ministry, available for rising 6th grade through rising 12th grade campers. The Summer camp program has four individual sessions each year, running from mid-June through mid-July. Each year, 150-160 campers join each week of Fanari Summer Camp for growth in their faith & friendships, while having a ton of fun along the way. Some of our most enjoyable activities include: Worship, Orthodox Life & Bible Study, Boating & Swimming, Summer Olympics, dances, field trips, and much more!

    2023 SESSIONS
    Session 1: Sunday, June 18 – Saturday, June 24, 2023
    Session 2: Sunday, June 25 – Saturday, July 1, 2023
    Session 3: Sunday, July 2 – Saturday, July 8, 2023
    Session 4: Sunday, July 9 – Saturday, July 15, 2023
    Session 5: Sunday, July 16 – Saturday, July 22, 2023

    Registration Opened March 6 in 2023 @ noon.  Registration Cost: $700/camper.  CLICK HERE for more information!

    Fanari is looking for wonderful young adults to join the Leadership Team! To learn more and apply, click here.

  • FANARI CAMP COUNSELOR opened on February 21 for summer camp 2023.  There will be priority given to those who submit their applications early.  The early priority deadline will close on April 4th.  Stay tuned to the Metropolis Fanari website for more information.

  • Fanari Camp FACEBOOK Page and Instagram 

  • METROPOLIS OF CHICAGO SEEKING COUNSELORS & LEADERSHIP TEAM MEMBERS:  Lighthouse Counselor Applications are open!  To learn more and apply, click here.  Fanari is looking for wonderful young adults to join the Leadership Team! To learn more and apply, click here

  • LIGHTHOUSE FOR HIGH SCHOOL SENIORS: Lighthouse is a summer camp ministry for Orthodox high school seniors offered by the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago, administered by Orthodox clergy and laypeople who work with campers to prepare them in a Christ-centered way for the social, emotional, practical, and spiritual challenges they will face in college.  In the summer of 2023, Lighthouse offered a week-long summer camp that will help high school seniors build a stronger sense of their identity and allow them to form relationships they need to transition into the next phase of their life - adulthood.  Lighthouse registration for HS Seniors opened March 6, 2023 @ noon.
  • Y2AM Ministry At Home Resources   Check this wonderful resource out!

  • GOA Center for Family Care Comfort Food for Families

  • IONIAN VILLAGE announced the dates for the Summer 2023 programs:  Session One:  June 19 – July 9, 2023; and Session Two:  July 18 – August 7, 2023.  Registration opened on Saturday, January 21, 2023.  Ionian Village is the international camping ministry of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America with campgrounds located in Peloponnesus, Greece. Each 20-day session is open to young people who will have completed grades 9 through 12.  For more information, CLICK HERE to visit

    CrossRoad is a ten-day academic summer institute that prepares high school juniors and seniors to make big life decisions and invites them to connect with the Orthodox Christian theological and spiritual tradition. Historically, CrossRoad has been hosted solely on the campus of Hellenic College Holy Cross; however in recent years, it has also been offered in Chicago on the campus of North Park University.  Application Deadline is typically in February.  For more information, visit; or, or call 617-850-1310.    




  • Sunday, January 15, 2023: DIVE FOR THE CROSS OUR ANNUAL DIVE FOR THE CROSS EVENT took place on Sunday, January 15th from 4:30 - 6:30 p.m. at the Highland Park Rec Center Pool for K-12th Graders.  See photos HERE.

  • Sunday, February 5, 2023: YOUTH SUNDAY A much-loved tradition in our Parish is our annual Youth Sunday celebration, a day to honor our youth. On Sunday, February 5, 2023 we celebrated and honored the important role our children play int his parish.  Witness the exuberance our youth brings to Ascension's Parish life by watching a video presented this year during our fellowship celebration HERE.
    See photos of this year's Youth SundayHERE.